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Words of wisdom ? ? ?


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5/15/2006 9:05:33 PM

Q: How can the deep feelings for each other felt in the beginnings keep growing instead of dying down? How can they transform into true love?

Father Ryan: The couple must become aware of the phenomena of change and growth. It is very important to get off to a good start.

This means that the first years of marriage must be intense and full of loving commitment. Then they should renew their commitment often, every year or at least every time that life is going to change in an important way.

In other words, they should prepare for each stage of marriage: the arrival of children, the long years of raising the family, the seven-year itch period, when their children are adolescent and the couple are midway in their lives, etc.

Each stage should sum up the positives and negatives of the previous stage, make new commitments, let go of certain things that will never be, and strive to be interdependent in a healthy way.

Q: In your opinion, what's the real secret of happy marriages?

Father Ryan: To answer that question I refer to the results of an extensive inquiry made in more that 20 countries, with more than 40 researchers asking questions to more that 17,000 families.

The results tells us that a happy marriage has the following characteristics: The couple spend time together, in quantity and quality; they know how to express their affection for each other; they show commitment to family life; they know how to discuss in a constructive way; they have shared spiritual values.

This is the recipe I would give any couple who want to build a happy future.



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