Updated: Sep 18
A bride and groom came to visit me in my office over zoom recently as they are looking for a cantor to officiate their Jewish wedding ceremony. They asked me all about the different parts that make up a Jewish wedding ceremony. I wanted to make sure that their wedding would be customized and unique to suit their vision. We had a great discussion about how to make their Jewish wedding ceremony, meaningful memorable. Then they asked me if I knew any tips or tricks about how to keep a marriage calm and tranquil, keep the peace if you will. They asked me because they know I’ve been performing wedding ceremonies for many years, and have married many Jewish couples and also I’ve been married for several years myself.
I recall asking this very question to a couple who had been married for 45 years and took some notes on their answers about how to keep the peace in a marriage
Adams’s Advice: “Try not to fight like high schoolers—don’t play games, give the silent treatment, argue over the same things over and over, or bring up past issues in every subsequent fight. If you have children, you want to set a good example of how you’d like them to act in their future relationships. You’re teaching if you show love and affection, you’ll get it in return.”
Susan’s Advice: “Never be a ‘counter’—this means don’t get petty about things like, ‘I emptied the dishwasher the last three times or I changed the last six diapers’. Because life is never fair and if you’re always counting to be ‘even’ you’ll never be happy. People have different tasks in a marriage—I may have wiped more bottoms and unloaded more dishes, but my spouse completed numerous other chores as well.”
The wedding couple really appreciated the advice I shared from this happily married couple because often they do get into fights and their relationship about counting. Like I made 300 dinners for you this past year or I went grocery shopping 275 times this year, and they realize that that was petty and silly, and a marriage is about balance and teamwork and collaboration .
When couples come to me, looking to see if I would be a good fit to officiate a Jewish wedding ceremony, we always discuss more than the actual ceremony itself. We get into a wonderful conversation about what will make a successful marriage. We look to stack the deck in the couples favor to help ensure a marriage that is long lasting, and filled with love and respect.