I got married late last year. I wanted to share some thoughts on marriage and hopefully providing some useful take-aways for navigating through one of life’s biggest decisions. 
What do you want to do when you grow up ? Raise your hand if part of the answer to that question involved an image of your dream wedding. I’ll admit that I’m one of them, we all grew up with Disney Movies and a concept of happy ever after. We’re embedded by a strong  bias that part of what makes normal people happy is a to settle down and marry someone. The society also pushes people toward marriage as the general expectation of life: going to good school, earn a degree, get married, have kids, settle down. The problem with that is that you miss out the largest variable, the someone in your dream wedding you will spend the rest of your life with. Perhaps wedding might be one of the most successful social invention ever as it exist across so many different cultures and religion. It’s an effective scheme to put up financial and reputation risk so this decision becomes close to irreversible. Everyone expect an exceptional wedding and marriage, but that expectation, by definition, already lands everyone in the mediocre land. 

Then why did I get married? why would anyone get married ? I got married because I found someone I believe in, someone that I don’t want to ever give up on, and someone that can change both of us for the better. All of us have a desire to be special. Desire to be special to group of people, or to a single person.  It’s a long term project that time is on your side if done right. A good time to get married is not when you find someone with all the glitter, but when you find someone that’s worthy to accept their shortfalls. 

My wedding night was probably the best night of my life. The best part about the wedding aren’t the fancy pictures, or the videos, or the decoration. 
When I look back, there are three special feelings that night. 

1) To actually do the thing you set out to do. 
2) To make a special person happy.
3) To see most of the people that shape your life in a single room. 

The best things in life are free (or almost free, you could probably get all of the 3 without spending the $$$). 
For those of you who are getting married. Here are my three tips for you.
Regardless of how similar you are, two people are different, two families are even more different. Expect the different expectation, voice your opinion, but empathize and be the bigger person in the relationship you value. Have your own opinion, but be the bigger person in the relationship you value. 
If the parents prefer things to be a certain way, be empathetic. They might’ve had it differently when they were younger. You may think that wedding is about celebrating two people, but parents may think that it’s about two families. They might’ve had it harder during their weddings too, respect their experience and perspective. You can compromise on the minor constraints if you it makes people who means a lot to both of you happy. If you expect that wedding should be mostly the couples choice, note it down and pass them on to your children.
Like I mentioned above the three special feelings about wedding aren’t money dependent. The smiles on the faces are more important than the chandeliers or fancy flower backdrop. Don’t spend all your savings on the single night, the utility diminishes. Money can also buy a memorable honeymoon, a home, or your children wellbeing. 
Lastly, there isn’t a happy ever after. If you’re single, you have single people problems. Likewise, if you get married, you will have married people problems. Make the decision for yourself, know your why, and you will have a memorable and rewarding lifelong journey with the family you make.

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