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Growing Old Together
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Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD posted:
Growing Old Together


Are you amazed by couples who have been together and in love for decades? Their ability to stay happily together is not a miracle. It takes loving actions, such as nurturing closeness, accepting differences between them, and finding ways to keep themselves and their relationship interesting.


Even if you have not been in a relationship for decades, what have you found that works to keep your relationships alive and healthy?


If you would like to read more in detail about this topic in my The Art of Relationships blog, click here .




Dr. Becker-Phelps's discussions and her responses in those discussions are for general educational purposes only. If you need help for an emotional or behavioral problem, please seek the assistance of a psychologist or other qualified mental health professional.


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dfromspencer responded:
I was amazed by my grandparents love life! They both lived into their 90's, for him, and 102 for her. They may have scowled at each other, and said some words, but one thing they never gave up on was, their love for each other! They met when my grandma was 13, and my grandpa was 16. As soon as she turned 15, it was off to the races to get hitched!!!


They were married for so long, nobody can remember that far back! LOL!!! They never could afford things like vacations, claimed the only thing they needed was, more time with family! And when they got invited to come stay with family somewhere, anywhere, it tickled them pink! With them, that was what really counted, quality family time! Being together meant so much to them, when my grandpa would go to the bar for a beer, he had better not stay long! If he did, she was a goin after him! We would all sit at the end of the alley, and watch grandpa come shambling back with his head hangin!!! Later on, when he couldn't go on his own, we would come over, snatch him up, and carry him out to his beloved shop, and have a couple of beers with him. Grandma knew, she just never said anything. My grandmother never weighed more than a hundred pounds soakin wet, but you never messed with that woman!!!!


They are both gone now, and I miss em dearly!!! Love, it was all about family!!! I remember my grandma would get so frustrated with my grandpa, she would sometimes say, I wish he would just go on and die, so I wouldn't have to wait on him hand and foot! Just as soon as he would need something, there she'd be, taking good care of him! And when he did go, she was pretty much inconsoleable! She grabbed hold to his coffin, and refused to let him go! It took four of us grandkids to get her off, and she was an old lady!!!


They loved each other to the very end, and it was family, they said, that kept them together all these years!


I hope I get to experience that some day!!! I really do!!!


Dennis
LIVE LONG, LOVE WELL!!!
 
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Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD replied to dfromspencer's response:
What a beautiful story! I hope you get to experience that someday, too.
 
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dfromspencer replied to Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD's response:
Thank you, Dr. Leslie!


I honestly do not believe it can ever happen for me, but it doesn't stop me from hoping!


Happy Holiday's!!!


Dennis
LIVE LONG, LOVE WELL!!!
 
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fcl replied to dfromspencer's response:
Ah, I have to tell a story here. My parents were married at age 26 and stayed together until my father died at the age of 78 two years ago ... Their relationship always made me think of a Hagar the Horrible cartoon I once saw many years ago. Helga is in the background saying "I could have married ANY man in the world! Why did I have to pick YOU?" and Hagar replies "Pure spite ..."

I had the cartoon framed and it hung for many years in their kitchen alongside another where Hagar is in a bar and complains to a young blonde woman "My wife doesn't understand me". There's a moment of silence and the woman (without even turning her head) answers "That's probably because you talk with your mouth full".
There's nothing inherently dirty about sex, but if you try real hard and use your imagination you can overcome that.
 
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fcl responded:
My turn. We've been together for over 30 years ... It was love at first sight and he moved in on our first date (weren't the 80s FUN!). What works for us is communication (never wait for things to come to a head), trust, respect (take your partner into consideration when making decisions), looking out for the other (if you can make the other's life easier then do so), being there when the other needs you (being the support that is needed). All of this is a two-way street. We're a partnership, a tag-team, if you will. The one who sees that something needs done, does it.

We've been through some hard times but they have never been as hard as they could have because there were two of us facing them.
There's nothing inherently dirty about sex, but if you try real hard and use your imagination you can overcome that.
 
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dfromspencer replied to fcl's response:
Thanks FCL!!!


Both of your stories are absolutely touching!!! Funny how we can relate things to our own lives, isn't it? The cartoon with your folks, and the love at first sight, with yours! Yes, in a way, the 80's were fun. Would I like to revisit them? Not a chance! That was when everything came spiraling down on me!!!


I am so happy to hear of these amazing love stories, especially the love at first sight ones!!! That is what I thought I had found, only to have my hopes dashed upon the rocks of my LUCK!!! My marriage was not to be. My love at first sight, was also not to be. Alas, such is my life! Would I opt out? Not on your life!!! I plan to find MY love at first sight, and I will!!! I just hope its sooner than later, though!!! LOL!


Thanks again, FCL!!! Wonderful stories!!! I wish you both a very long, and blissful life!!!


Dennis
LIVE LONG, LOVE WELL!!!
 
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rohvannyn replied to dfromspencer's response:
I've had a couple cases of "love at first sight." One of them I befriended, then parted from due to circumstance and moved in with. That ended badly. The other, I dated but circumstances once again drove us apart. I still love that one, a little, but it would have been a disaster if we had stayed together. I've been with my current partner for nine years. I can't say she's my soul mate but nobody understands me better. I am trying to be a better partner for her. I don't know how long our relationship will last because I don't know how long she has to live, but at the same time I want to do better so what time we do have is good.

My folks have been married thirty five years this year. They seem to get along pretty well though tolerance and understanding.
Roh

'Your focus determines your reality.' --QGJ
 
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dfromspencer replied to rohvannyn's response:
Nice story Roh, I hope you get what you want! I'm pulling for you!!!


Take care!


Dennis
LIVE LONG, LOVE WELL!!!
 
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Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD replied to dfromspencer's response:
I'm glad to see all of your thoughts here and your willingness to share such great stories. What I'm hearing definitely fits with the gist of my thread. That is, love at first sight might be wonderful, but it's the everyday "work" that keeps love alive and relationships happy.

And, Dennis, I'm hoping that you hear that what goes into creating a happy relationship is something you have to offer -- and so a happy relationship is something you can (and hopefully will) find and create one day.
 
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dfromspencer replied to Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD's response:
Thank you, again, Dr. Leslie!!!


I am hoping for the same thing! I want that love ever after kind of love!!! I want to wake up every morning thinking of how much I love this woman beside me! I want to have daydreams of her throughout the day! I want to have that anxious anticipation of seeing her at the end of the day! I want to fall asleep in the arms of the one I love, every single night, for the rest of my life!


Yes, I'm hoping too, Dr. Leslie! I will never give that up, now, thanks to you!!! You made me see how hope is more than a word, its a belief, and I sure believe I will, someday!!! I will have that awesome love, one day!!!


Thank you, thank you, thank you Dr. Leslie!!!


Please take care!


Dennis
LIVE LONG, LOVE WELL!!!
 
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jdlipscomb responded:
Whenever I tend to get unhappy with something my mate did or wishes to do, I remember there are times when she gets unhappy with me so I try to forget it and go on. As I'm sure she does with me many times. So far the relationship has been good for 52 years come Jan 2014.
 
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Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD replied to jdlipscomb's response:
Happy anniversary!
 
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dfromspencer replied to jdlipscomb's response:
Fantastic!!! HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!!!






D.
LIVE LONG, LOVE WELL!!!


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