putting together a shared vision
of how you want to
spend your lies together
- is constructing
the psychological identify
of the marriage
as an entity in itself.
The adolescent and the young adult are fundamentally
A person at this stage in their development
is chiefly engaged
in establishing his or her identity
separate from the family of origin.
Building the new,
his or her identity of a marriage
requires a shift from the "I" of emancipated adult
to a solid and lasting
At the same time the sense of
has to include room
for the autonomy of each partner.
who divorce this
is often weak or absent all together.
it's staying power
in the face of
life's inevitable frustrations and temptations
to run away or stray.
It also give the partners a sense
that they constitute a sovereign country
they make all the rules.
Marriage commands loyalty and
is worth defending
requires each partner to
and to sacrifice a portion
of his or her autonomy.
In a good marriage
the new identity is built
on a solid foundation of
love and empathy.
Each person must learn to identify with the other,
and both together to identify with their marriage.
The couples decisions now reflect what is best for him,
what is best for her,
and what is best for the marriage.
Happy couples seem to carry
the image of the marriage
as a separate presence
continuing attention and nurture,
like a healthy garden.
They say things like,
"What we both need
what the marriage needs
more time together."