Marriage Isn’t For You By Seth Smith

15 11 2013

marriage is not for you

Having been married only a year and a half, I’ve recently come to the conclusion that marriage isn’t for me.

Now before you start making assumptions, keep reading.

I met my wife in high school when we were 15 years old. We were friends for ten years until…until we decided no longer wanted to be just friends. 🙂 I strongly recommend that best friends fall in love. Good times will be had by all.

Nevertheless, falling in love with my best friend did not prevent me from having certain fears and anxieties about getting married. The nearer Kim and I approached the decision to marry, the more I was filled with a paralyzing fear. Was I ready? Was I making the right choice? Was Kim the right person to marry? Would she make me happy?

Then, one fateful night, I shared these thoughts and concerns with my dad.

Perhaps each of us have moments in our lives when it feels like time slows down or the air becomes still and everything around us seems to draw in, marking that moment as one we will never forget.

My dad giving his response to my concerns was such a moment for me. With a knowing smile he said, “Seth, you’re being totally selfish. So I’m going to make this really simple: marriage isn’t for you. You don’t marry to make yourself happy, you marry to make someone else happy. More than that, your marriage isn’t for yourself, you’re marrying for a family. Not just for the in-laws and all of that nonsense, but for your future children. Who do you want to help you raise them? Who do you want to influence them? Marriage isn’t for you. It’s not about you. Marriage is about the person you married.”

It was in that very moment that I knew that Kim was the right person to marry. I realized that I wanted to make her happy; to see her smile every day, to make her laugh every day. I wanted to be a part of her family, and my family wanted her to be a part of ours. And thinking back on all the times I had seen her play with my nieces, I knew that she was the one with whom I wanted to build our own family.

My father’s advice was both shocking and revelatory. It went against the grain of today’s “Walmart philosophy”, which is if it doesn’t make you happy, you can take it back and get a new one.

No, a true marriage (and true love) is never about you. It’s about the person you love—their wants, their needs, their hopes, and their dreams. Selfishness demands, “What’s in it for me?”, while Love asks, “What can I give?”

Some time ago, my wife showed me what it means to love selflessly. For many months, my heart had been hardening with a mixture of fear and resentment. Then, after the pressure had built up to where neither of us could stand it, emotions erupted. I was callous. I was selfish.

But instead of matching my selfishness, Kim did something beyond wonderful—she showed an outpouring of love. Laying aside all of the pain and aguish I had caused her, she lovingly took me in her arms and soothed my soul.

Marriage is about family.

I realized that I had forgotten my dad’s advice. While Kim’s side of the marriage had been to love me, my side of the marriage had become all about me. This awful realization brought me to tears, and I promised my wife that I would try to be better.

To all who are reading this article—married, almost married, single, or even the sworn bachelor or bachelorette—I want you to know that marriage isn’t for you. No true relationship of love is for you. Love is about the person you love.

And, paradoxically, the more you truly love that person, the more love you receive. And not just from your significant other, but from their friends and their family and thousands of others you never would have met had your love remained self-centered.

Truly, love and marriage isn’t for you. It’s for others.

This post originally appeared on, a website dedicated to helping people move forward in life.




17 responses

14 01 2023
21 11 2015

for you

26 10 2015
Goldrose Adebola

Reblogged this on Goldrose Adebola's Blog.

20 10 2015
Bassey Nsebot

Am lifted

10 06 2015

Don’t like this at all. It assumes widest happiness means husbands happiness. It assumes wives are honest and unbiased. It assumes your marriage is more important than you. It suggests that divorce is the fault of the husband for failing to satisfy the wife. It allows the wife to be dissatisfied for any reason without remorse and be unaccountable. It creates a subjective duty for the husband to prove love while the wife has no duty at all, since obeying has long been tossed aside. I would rather live alone.

2 01 2014

Worth sharing. Thanks, Uba, and happy new year. As soon as I’d read the piece I sent it to my wife and assured her I agree with the writer and would try to live the belief!

2 01 2014

You are welcome, and I am happy you found it useful. Cheers and Happy New year

18 11 2013
Francis Nayo Philip

wow you have given me enlightenment

17 11 2013
Ifeanyi Okoye

Reblogged this on DrMaestro's Blog and commented:
This article really blessed me.

17 11 2013

Am geartful for the post,does great,keep it up

16 11 2013
Winny Linus

A must read 4 all singles, married, divorces, and all those in relationship, you will be glad you did. Good am friends and have a nice day ahead, you are the best.

16 11 2013
Lailla Sobulo

Wow this is deep

15 11 2013
kresterwel nongbri

i just love this site..its good nm real.

15 11 2013
Mutumba Silver Trumpet Litebele

mhm..i like this..thats a powerful concept. thank you for sharing.

15 11 2013
Harold Ikewueze

We appreciate your post. Quite an interesting story of love by Seth. The golden rule comes up again to remain golden. With the philosophy of ‘It is not for me’ marriage can always work for two consenting adults of the opposite sexes; of course who like Christians have prayed through the whole hog of decision to marry one another. A good piece for the married and yet to be married. I love the question that love asked in the article ‘What Can I give?’. Oh, my God, love is truly a giver. No matter how dark the journey maybe love will always give. And as you read this you discover that even in that dark hour when Seth slided back into selfishness, it was the wife who still had love that rescued the situation. Selfishness is like the Dead Sea as I wrote recently in an article “The Dead Sea Complex”. Any person with such a “Me-Me” complex is a threat and danger to marriage. This is a must read . Thanks. We love you forever.

15 11 2013
Todi Adu

Lovely read!!! Thanks 4 sharing! Indeed life is abt love, love is abt sacrifice

15 11 2013

You are welcome Todi Adu Yes, only few know it, no thanks to hollywood and soap operas, yet , love is about sacrifice!

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