I saw this article from Real Simple - readers speak out.
What Is the Secret of a Good Marriage?
Come as You AreMarry someone you love exactly as they are, and be sure they feel the same. That way, you'll never expect more of each other than you are each happy to give. I didn't realize this until my second marriage. Another secret? Don't get married until you're sure of who you are.
Martinsburg, West Virginia
The Fun HouseTickle fights! Several times a week, my husband and I engage in a spontaneous tickle-battle royale. I almost always lose, but writhing in giggles is a great way to end the evening.
My husband and I have a strict rule: Never argue with your clothes on. If we are out and about to fight, we know that we have to wait until we're home and undressed. By then we've usually forgotten what the trouble was about.
Cameron, North Carolina
Friday-night dates. We might eat at a nice restaurant, go bowling, or just sit at home with a freshly purchased gallon of ice cream and (to my husband's dismay) the latest chick flick.
Las Vegas, Nevada
Rules of the GameMy husband and I always make sure that the bedroom is our private place. Not just for physical intimacy, but for having a space to talk and be together.
Knowing the grass isn't greener on the other side. My husband and I married a bit later than the average couple, and by then we had both had plenty of time to "sow our oats." We truly love one another and never wonder "what if," mainly because we've been there and done that. We know we want to be together, without question.
My father asked me this same question when I was in college. Full of know-it-all, psychology-major cockiness, I answered, "Love and trust." "Wrong," he said. Stumped, I followed up with "Communication." Wrong again. His answer: sex and money. If a couple can't get those two things right, then they're not going to be happy. After eight years of marriage, my husband still chases me around the house, and courting expenses are built into the budget.
Colonial Beach, Virginia
Something to Talk AboutThe key to a happy marriage is speaking the same language. My husband and I both speak sarcasm fluently.
Beverly Hills, Michigan
My husband and I live an hour and a half away from our parents. Those long drives give us time to vent about our families, talk about our pasts, and reaffirm our bond. The kids sleep, and we connect―he talks to me more in the car in that small amount of time than in a whole month at home.
My husband of 35 years and I agree that every couple should go out of town yearly, without the children, and follow this not-so-simple rule: "You cannot discuss the kids or your jobs." It is amazing how much you can find to talk about.
In BriefKissing every day, even when you don't feel like it.
I once asked an elderly neighbor this very same question. He and his wife had been married more than 50 years. He replied, "Oh, my dear, it's really very simple. My wife and I agreed long ago that I'd make all the big decisions and she'd make all the little decisions. And in all these years together, there just haven't been any big decisions."
Bedminster, New Jersey
I love the last two !!