Southern Thing Column

How thanking Sweetums for cooking dinner makes our marriage strong

Following is an excerpt from this week’s column on The link at the bottom takes you to the full column.

I think you all know what I am grateful for this Thanksgiving season: Making it through my first year as a middle-aged newlywed. (If I’m not mistaken, we get to claim newlywed status for two years, during which time people can continue to send wedding gifts, although of course I’m not suggesting such a thing.)

I was reading a CNN story recently on factors that lead to divorce and I was happy to learn Sweetums and I have many traits that put us on the list for success, such as marrying when we’re older and have similar educational backgrounds. I ran into one sticking point, though: “Neuroticism,” or a person’s mental instability, seems to be problematic for marriages so there is some concern there. I won’t tell you which one of us has neuroses – you can figure that out for yourself. (Although I can tell you that he’s the one who wanted to dress as Bigfoot at our wedding and who put a Sasquatch and Loch Ness Monster statues in our front garden. Just sayin.’)

But there is one thing I think will keep our marriage stronger than any statistic or characteristic: Saying thank-you. I know it sounds simple, and even obvious, but it wasn’t obvious to me until I met Sweetums. Click here to read the full column on

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