by Merritt on April 18, 2012

In my 20s there was this simple list of things I heard people talk about related to marital compatibility–and it seemed they all were about personal preferences. Whether or not you put the cap back on the toothpaste {yes, you should}, which way the toilet paper should go {over, of course} and which side of the bed you sleep on {if lying down, I’m on the left}.

© Adambooth freeimage 1391091 200x300 PreferencesIt may have been these kinds of topics that made me think living with my boyfriend would help me determine if we’d be compatible for marriage. I mean if we could work those things out, what COULDN’T we do? Right? But with two different boyfriends, two living-togethers {yes, at two different times}, neither relationship resulted in marriage. And it had NOTHING to do with how well we managed toilet paper or toothpaste.

I’m oh-so-much-the-wiser now. Playing marriage didn’t help me understand what it meant to be married. It took BEING married to help me with that. And I learned it’s about so much more than compatible preferences.

Still, we’ve both definitely got our preferences. I’m slow to throw things away; he’s quick. I like to let the hand-washed dishes dry on the counter; he likes to grab a towel and dry them immediately. I don’t mind clutter; it drives him crazy. He could eat the same thing for lunch every day for a week; I like a little more variety. I make emotional decisions; he makes practical ones. He prefers a firm bed; the squishier the better for me.

Despite our different preferences, we’ve got a pretty good marriage. Some of this stuff drives us crazy about each other, but that’s where learning to be patient and forgive often has made all the difference.

What preference differences & similarities do you notice in your marriage? 

Photo Credit: © Adambooth | Stock Free Images & Dreamstime Stock Photos

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