How to make marriages work

How to make marriages work
Apprentice Troy See kissing his girlfriend Liang Pei Wen after she accepted his marriage proposal before Race 3 at the parade ring of the Singapore Turf Club in Kranji on 3 November 2013. He later won the race while riding Benji's Empire.

I agree with Ms Ada Chan Siew Foen that we need to address the underlying causes of failed marriages ("Address reasons behind failed marriages"; Forum Online, Wednesday).

She is right to pinpoint the lack of open communication as a major reason.

The wife of one of my relatives divorced him three months after marriage on the grounds of adultery, after seeing him talking to a woman during a business trip. He was never given a chance to explain himself.

It is also true that too much focus on one's job can cause marital problems.

I have a very close friend in Hong Kong whose wife was employed by a very big law firm, and she worked past midnight daily.

A few years after she took up this job, my friend could no longer stand the thought of returning to an empty home after work every day, and issued an ultimatum to his wife - to save the marriage, she had to choose between her family and her work. She eventually gave up her career as a lawyer.

For a marriage to work, both spouses must be willing to give and take.

When my parents got married, my father was very healthy. However, due to the nature of his job, he often had to entertain clients with drinks and big feasts, and go on a lot of business trips.

About seven years into the marriage, he developed ailments such as diabetes and heart problems.

My mother stood by his side and took care of him until his death in February 2007. They were married for 32 years.

Li Dan Yue (Ms), Reader

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