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"DO YOU LIKE HER?"

One Saturday, I left the shop a little early so that I could change clothes and make it across town in time to officiate a wedding. It was for a very sweet, young couple we know. I was reminded of the time not long ago when Sherry and I celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary. Though we've only been married 35 years, we’d heard so much about the 50th anniversary that we decided to go ahead and celebrate it in advance. We had one grand celebration. We went on a cruise and everything. Having actually been married 35 years, and being recognized by the state as an officiant; I thought maybe I was qualified to give a little marital advice during the ceremony. I considered telling them that had they lived in the 1500's they would have been about a month early for the wedding. Back then they took their annual baths in May and got married in June. Thus, the popularity of June weddings. I decided the bride and groom didn't need to know that. What I did tell them was about the young man who went to the father of his intended to ask for his daughter's hand in marriage. The old gentleman fixed his eyes on his future son-in-law and asked, "Well, son, do you like her?" "I love her," he said. The wise old fellow had a very direct reply. "I didn't ask you if you love her. I asked you if you like her." He explained the difference. He explained, as I did during the ceremony, that falling in love is one thing. Being lifetime friends and companions is quite another. Falling in love is largely the result of physical attraction, and is natural. To stay in love we must learn to like each other. That can be a bit more of a challenge than attraction, because it requires an ongoing exercise of maturity. It doesn’t just come naturally. BARBER-OSOPHY: If a relationship lasts it's usually because those involved have worked at liking each other. Copyright 2004, Sumerlin Enterprises. Permission is granted for you to copy this article for distribution as long as the above copyright and contact information is included. Please reference or include a link to www.barber-osophy.com.

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