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The Old Money Book

Living Better While Spending Less – Secrets of America's Upper Class

Getting It Right,

Making It Last

Is it just ‘true love’ that holds a marriage together?

Or are there other factors? Are there techniques, strategies, or an overall philosophy that can enable a couple to not only survive, but thrive throughout their married life? To make their relationship richer and more rewarding than they’d ever dreamed?

When we look at marriages in different cultures around the world—those defined as ‘arranged’ marriages and those in which couples marry someone they’ve ‘fallen in love with’—I believe that the most important question we have to ask ourselves is…exactly what makes a marriage ‘work’, regardless of where or how it starts?

Are there common denominators that contribute to an enduring and fulfilling marriage? What are they? Where can I find them? How can we recognize and implement these in order to ‘get it right’ and ‘make it last’?

Or is a happy, lifelong marriage just the luck of the draw? Or worse, a test of endurance?

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Because marriage is one of the most important choices we make—perhaps the most important choice we make—these questions are worth asking and the answers are worth pursuing.

In writing The Old Money Guide To Marriage – Getting It Right and Making It Last, I did more than a little research and no small amount of reflection. I spoke with a large number of married couples, as well as many single and divorced people, to get an idea of what has and has not worked for them. I inquired about what they hoped to find in a partner, and what they hoped to experience in a relationship.

I’m happy to say that I’ve been happily married to the same woman for over 30 years, so I know a little bit about the subject. But I’m not foolish enough to think I know it all. Every person’s personality, desires, needs, aspirations, goals,and backgrounds are different. Every person also has a different level of commitment, how much they’re willing to work and grow in a relationship.

So how did I approach the subject of dating, getting serious, getting engaged, and getting married, knowing that my idea of a great marriage might not be everybody’s idea of a great marriage?

Very simply: I articulated a few enduring fundamentals—The Rules—that apply universally to humans and relationships. Then I asked a lot of specific questions that had no ‘right or wrong’ answer: they could only be answered by each reader, honestly and privately, in order to have the best shot at finding the best partner, and experiencing the best marriage.

First, The Rules. There are some rules about dating and marriage that are timeless. They remain constant because people worldwide have pretty much the same needs, goals, and desires, and they seek to fulfill some of those through relationships.

To address this reality in the most effective manner possible out the outset, you must be honest with yourself, and, as much as possible, know yourself.

‘Knowing yourself’ has some obvious components. You should know what you like and what you dislike. Know what you are willing to tolerate, what you must have, and what is an absolute ‘non-starter’, in a partner or in a marriage. You need to accept and own these preferences. That’s a good rule.

You’ll want to articulate your values—to yourself and your partner—and know to what extent your potential partner shares these same values. Sharing the same values is a cornerstone to any lasting and healthy relationship, so that’s another rule to follow.

Some ‘rules’ are less conceptual and more grounded in the real world. For example, do you think you can have sex with someone on the first date and have their respect going forward in the relationship? The honest answer to this question creates a ‘rule’ that you’ve probably heard from your parents, teachers, and friends your entire life.

Photo credit: Weatherford Bradley
So I started these straightforward ideas, and then added more ‘rules of the road’ for each ‘phase’ of a relationship.

In the book, you’ll find helpful insights about the following:

  • How to have a fun, safe, and fulfilling dating experience;
  • How to know when you’re ready to commit to an exclusive relationship;
  • How to think about getting engaged;
  • How to know if you’re ready to get married, and how to a prepare for a life together.
Of course, with every set of guidelines offered for each milestone, I also present a bundle of corresponding questions that only you can (and should) answer

They include:

  • What values do I want to share with my potential mate?
  • Will I date only people who are in my social circle?
  • Or will I date people who aren’t like me at all in terms of background or values?
  • How long will I date someone exclusively before I agree to get married?
  • Will I want my partner to be as ambitious as I am? More ambitious?
  • Do I want children?
  • Do ‘we’ want children?
  • How many children do we want?
  • What are the basic rules on how would I want to raise children?
  • How large a role will money play in my marriage?
  • Do our financial goals and priorities align?
  • Is saving money important to me?
  • Or am I a ‘spender’?
  • If my partner and I are both ‘spenders’, how will that impact our future?
  • If only one of us is a ‘saver’, how will that impact our marriage?
  • Is my desire to get married being fueled by peer pressure, family pressure, financial considerations, or cultural traditions?
  • Do I want a marriage like the marriage my parents had?
  • How would I like my marriage to be different?

So, as much work as I’ve put into writing The Old Money Guide To Marriage, it’s going to require just as much work from you as you read it. You’ll need to dive into the exercises at the end of each chapter and honestly respond to some soul-searching, sometimes difficult questions.

My hope is that, after reading the book, your approach to marriage will be thoughtful, thorough, honest, and intelligent. I encourage you to engage your head as much as your heart—regardless of whether your single, dating, engaged, or already married. Remember: it’s one of the biggest decisions of your life.

No matter where you are in your life or in a relationship, I believe that The Old Money Guide To Marriage will enhance your dating experience, help you make smart choices as you enter an exclusive relationship, encourage you to ask important questions as you get engaged, and allow you to maximize your chances of happiness when you get married.

Not that marriage is all work. It is work, but it’s also passion, joy, adventure, accomplishments and just plain fun. I have never laughed as hard as I have when my wife and I experience something funny together. I’ve never felt the same level of joy as when we share a beautiful moment together. I’ve never felt the same depth of fulfillment as when we accomplish an important goal together.

And just so you’ll know: this is it. There’ll be no request for your email address, no online classes, no up-selling of more expensive products.

Just take the time, read the book, invest in your future, and learn the secrets that have served so many, so well, generation after generation. Get your copy of The Old Money Guide To Marriage today.

You really do want to Get It Right and Make It Last.

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