Plan Your 50th Anniversary – Assume Love

My first husband and I did this entirely by accident, and now I highly recommend it, even though he did not survive to enjoy the date, and I am happily remarried to someone very different.

Who will celebrate with you? It’s likely your parents and perhaps even some of your siblings and friends will be gone by then. Do you (both of you) picture being surrounded by children and grandchildren? Or off on a grand trip you can afford only because you had none of the expenses of raising children and spoiling grandchildren?

Would you (both of you) like to celebrate in or near a home you’ve lived in and loved for at least 30 years? Will most of your family and friends be neighbors or flying in from distant places? Or would just the two of you be enough?

If one of you is by then dealing with dementia, the results of a stroke, or some deadly disease, will you have the money for paid help or will one of you be pushing the wheelchair or guiding the elbow of the other?

Do you (both of you) hope dancing will be a big part of your celebration? How about other energetic pursuits? Ours was to be at Six Flags Magic Mountain, and I have friends who might enjoy a celebration at the top of a mountain they’ve climbed up or plan to ski down.

Do you (both of you) expect to be retired before this date?

Will you (both of you) want your celebration be a fundraiser for a great cause?

How do you (both of you) hope you’ll be dressed for this event? Formal? Stylishly casual? Jeans and flip flops? Or maybe bunny costumes or Steam Punk outfits?

Do each of you expect the other to keep the exact date free, even if there’s a war to be covered, a disaster where your help is needed, a book due to the publisher, or a grandchild receiving a doctoral degree that day?

And what do you (both of you) hope your sex life is like that week after 50 years together?

If you cannot discuss such long-term lifestyle issues together before you marry, it’s likely to be an especially rocky ride. If you can handle the discussion, it’s the ones you disagree on that will shape you as a couple, because you will need to be aware of what matters to your mate and find some happy Third Alternatives for the ones you don’t agree on.

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