Get The Ring: How to Find & Keep the Right One for Life.
Tziporah Heller - Part 6
help by helping each of the people notice what’s really happening in the process of dating.
Sometimes the reason why dating stays in this place is because it’s easy. It’s an easy place to be. You have the companionship of somebody whom you have come to like without having made any commitment towards them. In the traditional community, oftentimes at this point, the third person and/or the parents, in ways that are sometimes less than subtle, will push things forward. But this isn’t what’s going to move it. The only thing that’s going to move a person at that point is their willingness to look ahead. Who do they really want to be, not just now, but ten years down the road? When they question that and answer honestly, then they’ll be able to move beyond the comfort of the moment. As long as they’re looking only at the present, it’s a very easy place to stay. There are whole communities of young people who are afraid to make commitments, who desperately long for something of more endurance, who pray silently, and who are afraid to say yes as much as they’re afraid to say no. Conversely, one of the great advantages that one finds in the traditional community is that when people do date, they know one thing about each other with absolute certainty. The person who is sitting across the table from me wants to get married. They’re just as vulnerable as I am. The process of dating ideally should move to greater and greater emotional caring, greater intimacy, until the point is reached where the people could actually see themselves as married to each other. Sometimes it helps to picture, what would it be like to go on a vacation with this person, to have this person leading the Seder, to have this person making Shabbos. The more you could see this as real, the more you could actually visualize marriage in a way that’s not threatening and is happy, the easier it is to move beyond the moment and to make a commitment.
As you mentioned, the divorce rates these days are staggering, but nobody goes into a marriage expecting to break it up a couple of years later. We all want a successful, long-lasting marriage and a partner for life. So what do we need to know to increase our chances for a successful relationship?
Tips for a Successful MarriageAs we said already, what marriage is all about is giving. And again, I don’t mean the kind of giving that people often equalize with martyrdom. I mean with taking pleasure and seeing that the other person is happy because you’re so closely identified with them.
What do men need to know? They need to know that what makes the woman happy is not necessarily what makes the man happy, although everybody is also an individual. What women
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