How To Be Happily Married For 50 Years: Practical Advice From a Couple Who Knows
By: Aesha Adams-Roberts
This weekend I attended the 50th Wedding Anniversary gala of Mr. and Mrs. Donald and Gloria Gridiron. Hundreds of people were there at this amazing event. I was excited to celebrate this amazing accomplishment and also learn how to be happily married for 50 years!
Donald and Gloria met "the old fashioned way": At church, on her 18th birthday. Gloria was actually on a date with a young preacher, but she spotted Donald because he was so well dressed. They had a chance to meet when Gloria's date got a flat tire and Donald offered to help. They were engaged 7 months later!
I loved hearing their story. I also loved the practical advice they shared on how to make your union stand the test of time.
1. "Our foundation was a commitment to God and each other"
As newlyweds, they made a commitment to each other: Divorce is not an option. They took that promise seriously and made a decision to work through whatever came their way. As Gloria stated, "Anything worthwhile is worth doing. And marriage is worthwhile." Donald said, "There isn't a marriage on this earth that won't be challenged. But if I please God, I'll please my mate and I'll please myself."
2. "It's about knowing how to reconcile and make up"
Forgiveness and reconciliation have helped the Gridiron's relationship stand the test of time. For exmple, they described a heated argument in the early years of their marriage–what Donald called an "intense fellowship,"–one Sunday on the way to church. Gloria got so angry that she yelled, "Stop the car!" got out, and walked home. At the same time, the kids were in the back seat discussing which parent they'd live with when their parents got divorced. Donald decided Gloria was too angry to get back in the car so he headed to church. Gloria was not happy when he returned home! But in his usual way, Donald asked: "Ok. How long are you gonna be mad?" Gloria said, "He always finds a way to make me laugh, and we kiss and make up."
Being happily married is not about avoiding conflict; It's about knowing how to get over it.
3. Know your spouse's love language, apology language, and "Do Me Baby" Language!
Gloria was embarrassed by this one, but to stay happily married and chasing each other around the house naked even after 50 years, you need to know how to make your spouse feel loved with the little things you do every day, how to kiss and make up after a fight, and how to romance & seduce each other!
4. "It's just normal to me. It's just one year at a time."
Gloria went on to say, "I don't know what the big deal is. It's just being married!" Although she was excited about celebrating 50 years of marriage (she planned the entire reception, after all) Gloria said 50 years of marriage was just normal! Her husband Donald agreed: "It's one day at a time. Then you look up, and it's been 50 years."
I think Donald and Gloria are right: their tips on how to stay happily married for 50 years will work at any point in your marriage! What do you think? Please share below 🙂