Adriana & Fred
Adriana & Fred (Married 9 years)
How long have you been married?
Fred: We got married in 2008?
Adriana: No, 9. Hahahahaha! It’s so funny because in our sixth year, both he and I said to each other, ‘Happy five year Anniversary! Then my sister, who was there said, “NO! It’s your sixth year married.” So funny! So bad! Thank goodness that we both forgot.
Adriana: When Fred proposed to me, I remember a lot of people in his department told him, think about it. He told me this and I was like, they are taking away the excitement, but we learned to live for ourselves.
Fred: I think a lot of people, at least in the job, a lot have been married and a lot of people have been through a divorce and ultimately you don’t want to see that for anyone else. I think they tend to say that whether it’s jokingly or in a serious sense, just to think about it, even if you have thought about it. Obviously, you go into a marriage and you never foresee something like divorce to happen. Even if people tell you don’t do it has that ever stopped somebody? Is it really going to be something that holds you back?
Adriana: Maybe for some people though. It’s already a big step it can make people question it.
What was the biggest surprise/lesson after marriage?
Adriana: For me, when you get married there are vows, but do you really listen and know what those vows are? Because in reality when you are married and value your marriage, those vows really mean everything your marriage goes through. Even though we have been married 9 years we have already gone through some hard times and we have a whole life ahead of us, we are probably going to go through so much more. For example, we have both had surgeries, we’ve had kids, stuff has happened, and you need to be strong in those moments with each other. We have had plenty of good times and the bad times have been really bad. When you are in those bad time it’s hard for you to see anything beyond that, but you should always remember the good times and always value your marriage. You have to remember why you are together. You do love each other, you are happy but you are just in a bad moment. It’s easy to say I’m done, I want to divorce or what not. But even if you say that you are going to wake up the next day and you're going to feel different. There is more to value in your marriage than to just throw it away. I come from a divorced family, obviously, my goal was to never even think about divorce, but I’m surprised by how much I’ve learned to put my marriage before anything, like drop my pride. Sometimes I may have a vision of something, and just because it is my vision does not mean it is his. It’s surprising how much I can change as a person because I want our marriage to work. There are commitments, I’ve committed to many things like, saving money, meal plans or not to curse etc. And sometimes those commitments don’t stick, but I do commit to our marriage. We have done marriage counseling, we’ve talked, we’ve argued, but always come back to the commitment of “we are going to make this work.” This is a commitment we are not going to give up.
Fred: My biggest surprise is how much work a marriage takes. I never realized. I obviously know what a marriage is and the love that goes into it, but you don’t realize the work it takes till you’re in it and I don’t mean that in a bad way. It’s about learning how to listen to your spouse. Learning how to compromise, where maybe before you didn’t do that as much and maybe in your marriage, you are still not compromising as much as you should, but you strive to do it, to do right by your partner. The work that you put in is what you are going to get out of it. Obviously, if you put in that work to become someone you want to, you want to be a better person for your wife and your kids. All of that is going to come back for you and create that life you want to be happy. But going into it I just thought, well we’re married that’s it. I’m the husband and you are the wife and that’s it. Obviously, that is not the reality of it, the reality is you are a team and you should work together to try to reach the same goal. We’ve been married for nine years, we’ve had down times and good times, but at the end of the day we made vows to each other and I think, it’s worth it to really work at it.
Adriana: Communication is the biggest thing. When we first started dating, obviously we both had pride and we both wanted to win an argument, but in a marriage, no one wins if you are arguing and just because you may think, I win because the other person said sorry, you don’t win. You both win if you both made it work. We are (you and me, Lily) coming from a place of what is it like to be married to our husbands in these jobs. We are not only dealing with the usual things that can affect a marriage but also dealing with this person not always being there physically for you. Or they are exhausted from their demanding job.
What about advice for new couples:
Adriana: Communication. No one wins unless you’re both happy and both feeling in love. Talk about EVERYTHING and don’t feel defensive. I know that there is a lot of times I’ll say something to Fred and I’m not saying you’re a bad person, I’m saying I don’t like this. He will think I’m saying he’s a bad husband and I’m not saying that. I love you, I’m with you, I married you and I still love you. All I’m saying is I don’t like this, what can we do to move on. Learn to not just build up. Actually, listen.
Fred: Have love. We all show love in different ways, some may not be as good at showing it, but constantly learn how to love one another, but as long as you have that love and are willing to work at it than you guys can always make it work. Again, it is a piece of everything you have to continue to work at it. It will be a lifetime of love if you do that. You sometimes have to choose to love your spouse. Its kind sappy and it sounds so simple, but love each other. Talk about things with your spouse. Strive to be a good husband, a good father, a good person. Ultimately if you love one another you willing to do whatever it takes for that person. It’s easy to throw something away at the end of the day. It’s easy to say forget it. In reality though is that the value of your marriage when you said I do or I’m going to be with you forever.
Adriana: I feel like to me it is easier for us to make it work then to get a divorce and deal with us, the kids, the life we’ve built. I think that it’s harder to give up on our marriage then to make a marriage work and to get over an argument. But I feel that way because I value our marriage, I value him and our life together.