It does take a whole lot of strength, tenacity, resolve and determination to persevere in a marriage. Often times, people confuse endurance for perseverance but they are two totally different things. Marriage is not meant to be endured but there is absolute need for perseverance if we indeed desire to have a lasting and joyful marriage. In such a short time of marriage, even I understand that it is never a smooth sail and will never be. We all go through the good, bad and the ugly. The sweet times come and so does the sour. The pitfalls of marriage comes to meet us head on and often times if feels like the end of the road. Most especially when it feels like your partner is not in there with you and just does not seem to get what you are going through. There is need for perseverance. A determination to keep building, keep loving and caring, keep working at it and keep giving our all even when it feels like it is not worth the sacrifice. Even when it feels like all you do is give without ever receiving in return. After all, you do not give in marriage because you hope to receive, you do not set expectations, you give because you love that person and want to make them happy.
Some of us will now ask the question, How much perseverance is needed? and when do we get to the point of enough is enough? Perseverance for me, is a virtue. It is one you must have cultivated before even entering the marriage institution. It just does not come onto you in one day. With each passing day and each passing phase, we learn to persevere just a little longer. I used to think my level of perseverance was very high before I got married, now I know it has become much more higher and I know by the time I am married for 30 years, it will have escalated (as I am surely not getting divorced).It mostly starts with a decision from the onset that come rain, come high water, you are staying in the marriage. A conscious decision that separation is not an option. Once you have that at the back of your mind, you take on perseverance as your best friend because there will come numerous times that you know it is not humanly possible to keep living with and loving your partner and I am not talking about just for the sake of the kids now. Day in day out, you persevere because you have to understand that nothing lasts forever like my mum always tells me. No terrible phase lasts forever, there will surely be a turning point. Many people will say, it sounds easy but if only you knew half of what I was going through. My reply will be that if you share your story with 10 other couples, then you will know there are people in worst situations who are still hanging on. We cannot afford to let go and give up to easily. We just cannot. A friend of mine was talking about celebrity marriages yesterday and she said most of them are not patient enough or resilient enough to work through their problems. It gets too hard and they pack up and go home after all, they have all they think they need and do not need to take nonsense from anyone. The fact is that does not apply to just celebrity marriages, we are often too quick to pack up and go. It is a marriage my dearest, you do not just pack it up!
Now it would be dangerous to talk about perseverance and not talk about the exception to the rule. To every rule, there is an exception. All I have said above, does not apply to a marriage where there is physical abuse in any way. He/she beats, slaps, shoves you; I am a strong advocate of pack up your stuff and RUN! Trust me when I say he/she because it happens both ways. There is no perseverance when it comes to physical abuse, it is not a phase, the likelihood of it passing is highly slim. The only likelihood is death in such a marriage because trust me, he/she will kill you one day. so RUN. That is the exception.
There is need for a high level of perseverance because that person that you love so much will surely make you regret your decision to marry him/her many times but keep building, keep striving, keep loving and keep working on it. It is all part of the package. Let us live, love and learn for the journey is still far and it is not for the fainthearted.