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Marriage Tips from Someone Who Has No Clue

June 11, 2010

Well I can’t say it’s been smooth sailing for the last decade, but with a wing and a prayer Ali and I somehow made it to our tenth wedding anniversary yesterday.  We celebrated by having lunch at The Blvd in The Regent Beverly Wilshire where we got married.  I used to tell people it is the same hotel where Pretty Woman was filmed, but I’m not sure if I want to make the association between our wedding and the lines:

Vivian: I would have stayed for two thousand.
Edward Lewis: I would have paid four.

Anyway, so yesterday it was just me, Ali, and his iPhone having lunch.  We had some delicious Caterpillar Sushi…

We had some words over Ali’s incessant texting and emailing…

And we had some dessert, courtesy of the hotel…

Considering my parents spent their retirement on my wedding, you’d think the hotel could have come up with something a little more elaborate for our anniversary.  I am totally kidding.  I had a couple of bites, Ali polished off everything else, and it was all excellent.

This morning a member of my Toastmaster’s group (incidentally my first speech went very well, thank you all for your positive vibes!!) asked me what advice I have for someone getting married.  Lucky for him he isn’t marrying me, so he is already off to a good start!  But I also provided him with the following tips:

1. Do not share a bathroom – this is not up for negotiation.  Trust me on this!
2. Do not share a closet – again, not up for negotiation.
3. Maintain a joint checking account but each person should have their own account too.  This was my mom’s advice and honestly? So smart.
4. Do not lie to your wife, especially if you are a bad liar. Seems obvious, right? Well some people in the Din Household have had to learn the hard way.
5. Don’t take 10 months to purchase a car.  This can be, and almost was, a deal breaker.  And I assure you that any divorce court would agree with me on this one.

10 years down…10 more to go?

46 Comments leave one →
  1. Leah @ Why Deprive? permalink
    June 11, 2010 3:02 pm


    I agree with you on not sharing a bathroom. I dont live with my boyfriend, but I dont like him using my bathroom as it is. He can walk to the gas station for all I care, its MINE! lol Can you tell I dont share well?

  2. June 11, 2010 3:13 pm

    10 to go for sure!! then 10 more and 10 more and 10 more ❤ ❤

  3. June 11, 2010 3:50 pm

    Congrats to you two. Very cute picture!
    As you already know, I agree with you on not sharing a bathroom. Lawrence uses our guest bathroom. Poor guy. We have one closet, and it is my domain. He gets a dresser from Ikea. So, I’m with you on that as well. However, we merged all accounts, as I was having weird control issues with money and it helped for me to surrender to being fully “together” with him that way. I know lots of couples who swear by the separate accounts though (and my parents gave similar advice).

    Other rules I would add:
    1. For men or women: Just be appreciative if/when your spouse creates a meal. Never criticize it or demand something else.
    2. Get a hobby. You can’t spend all your free time together; that would be crazy-making.
    3. Take advantage of things like e-mail and text messaging. Stay in touch in little ways during mundane days.
    4. Remember that no problem is bigger than the marriage.
    5. Instead of arguing about something, express confusion over a different point of view. This can turn out to be kind of funny.

    • June 11, 2010 7:51 pm

      Kim – you are so wise…if only Ali could get a handle on #1, I think we could make it another 10 years at least!!

  4. June 11, 2010 3:56 pm

    Those tips all sound like good ones! Happy anniversary!

  5. traynharder23 permalink
    June 11, 2010 4:18 pm

    GREAT TIPS! and you guys look awesome. HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!!!!

  6. June 11, 2010 4:44 pm

    happy anniversary 🙂 congrats!! i love that picture of you two. you guys look so happy

  7. June 11, 2010 4:49 pm

    Happy anniversary to you both! It always makes me smile to see people celebrating wedding anniversaries in an age where the divorce rate is skyrocketing. I’m happy for you, Ameena 🙂

    And I’ll be sure to take those tips to heart when I find Mr. Right.

  8. Michelle permalink
    June 11, 2010 4:55 pm

    Happy Anniversary! Great advice. I’m excited to get married but definitely nervous about a possible divorce you know?

  9. June 11, 2010 5:44 pm

    HAPPY ANNIVERSARY to you and Ali!!! Wow, ten years!!!? That’s awesome guys!!! Can you tell by the exclamation marks how hapy I am for you guys?

    Totally agree with you on ALL those tips. Isn’t it ironic that you get married to be together but the best way to have a lasting marriage is to separate everything? Lol. Have a super weekend.

  10. June 11, 2010 6:36 pm

    Happy Anniversary!! 🙂 The desserts they gave you look so lovely!! 🙂 Now I’m craving sushi! 😉

  11. June 11, 2010 6:53 pm

    Congrats!!! Happy Anniversary!

  12. June 11, 2010 6:56 pm

    Happy Anniversary! I actually implement some of your tips already in my marriage and it rocks! And those foods look delicious…

  13. June 11, 2010 6:56 pm

    Happy Anniversary Ameena!!

  14. June 11, 2010 7:18 pm

    Congratsss!!! I like the joint checking account advice. Your mom is VERY smart!

  15. traynharder23 permalink
    June 11, 2010 7:47 pm

    OF COURSE i’ll meet up with you guys at the park! i have volunteering on tuesdays, but LETS MAKE IT HAPPEN!!!!

  16. June 11, 2010 7:58 pm

    OK, even though I may not know of the intricacies of marriage, I still think that you guys are incredible. 10 years is definitely worth celebrating–I have immense respect for people who can stick it out in a marriage, through thick and thin. I know it’s probably against North American culture or something, but sticking together in a marriage is one part of my Asian upbringing that I don’t despise. 🙂

    Now…when I re-read your post, and realized that you were in THE REGENT HOTEL in BEVERLY HILLS, well…my heart just about flew out of my body. I almost started to hyperventilate. That’s because The Regent Hotel is one of the only places I remember as a young girl in California! My aunt, uncle, and grandparents live in San Marino, in California, and we used to visit them quite often when my brother and I were little. Whenever we went, the highlight was always going to Beverly Hills. My uncle would go to Prada — grandma, my cousin, my brother and I would head over to the Blvd café thing in Regent. (I didn’t find out what it was called until today though! :P) We’d order the white chocolate mousse cake for dessert, of course, and even though it was 10 bucks for a piece of cake the size of my two thumbs (and probably more expensive now) we loved every fancy schmancy bite of it. We especially loved how when we ordered the waiter would bring out a plastic “sample” platter that had all of our options on the tray.

    I know this is going to sound weird but I also remember loving their washrooms. They were the nicest public washrooms I’d ever been to. 😀 I also remember my parents and grandparents and everyone telling us kids that it was the place where Pretty Woman was filmed, and me not believing them. I thought they must have meant the one down the street and told myself they probably just didn’t understand the English explanation given by whoever it was that told them that. But as of today, I now realize that I was wrong, and they had been right all along.

    Sorry…this was a really long comment. Remember that I’m from Canada so anything outside of the great white north is really exciting for me. 😀

    Happy anniversary! ❤

  17. June 11, 2010 10:05 pm

    i know huh! quinoa millet patties are so good. yea i get it all from a vegan restaurant in town.. its like a buffet and they change the items on the menu every day so its always somethnig different. its really amazing. the chef/owner is a macrobiotic chef and an amazing vegan baker.

    have a great night lady! ❤

  18. June 11, 2010 10:22 pm

    Happy anniversary to you and Ali! 10 years is quite an accomplishment. 🙂 Here’s to 10 and 20 more.

    Thanks for the tips. I’ll have have to keep them in mind for when I do end up getting married. If and when that will be. hahaha…

    • June 12, 2010 3:19 am

      Happy Anniversary!

      We only have one bathroom – hope it doesn’t lead to our ultimate demise 😉

  19. June 12, 2010 3:30 am

    Happy anniversary! Wow! 10 years! Definitely an achievement.

    I love your advice. I’m definitely going to stick to the having my own bathroom and having my own closet guidelines. And the no lying. Of course.

    As for this car business. I think I might actually have to divorce someone who HAS a car…since the stress of trying to find parking in NYC may cause more stress than it’s worth! 😛

  20. June 12, 2010 4:29 am

    Happy Anniversary to you Ameena & Ali. That is an awesome treat from the hotel but yeah they should have just treat you the entire meal. Good advice about money and sharing.

  21. June 12, 2010 4:58 am

    Happy Anniversary!

  22. June 12, 2010 5:59 am

    Happy Anniversary!! The 10th anniversary is the year of “Tin” (or so my book says)…so maybe you’ll be getting a tin necklace haha

  23. June 12, 2010 6:03 am

    Congrats! That’s awesome. I hope I look as happy as you do when I reach my 10 year. We have only been married 1 year so far. Great tips. We have always shared a bathroom but it was bigger than some peoples homes. I have no idea why the last 2 places we lived had that much room. We had our own sinks, our own 3 drawers and under the cabinet space too. The good news for me is that Ryan is very clean. Have a good weekend.

    I think I am logged in under my word press account, so this is Melinda from Nutrition, Food , Travel and More.

  24. June 12, 2010 7:29 am

    Happy anniversary! Sounds like it was a wonderful way to celebrate and reflect on the last 10 years of your life together.
    I think it’s very important to let the other person know how much you appreciate him/her.
    The other thing for me – spend time away from each other. I’m always so excited to see Michael after he’s been away or I’ve been away. Maybe it reminds me of our first two years together (not married) when we were doing the bicoastal thing, but I’m always so happy to be home or to have him home.

  25. Jessica permalink
    June 12, 2010 7:51 am

    Congrats on 10 years! That’s quite a milestone in today’s world. Great tips to share!

  26. June 12, 2010 7:53 am

    Happy Anniversary, Ameena and Ali! May you have many many more wonderful years.

  27. Daisy permalink
    June 12, 2010 8:06 am

    Happy 10 years!! Your lunch looks incredible. You give great marriage advice!

  28. June 12, 2010 8:33 am

    Happy Anniversary! I’m not married, but love the tips from you (and Kim.)

    Just from experience, I do have a couple to add:
    * I just want to emphasize the “don’t spend all your time together” point first.
    * If you can walk your dirty dishes as far as the kitchen counter next to the sink, you can actually place the dirty dishes into the sink.
    * Do not always try and sound out personalized license plates of other cars while driving. Once in a while it’s fun, but every time–and trying to figure out the story behind them–is just plain annoying.
    * Only clip your toenails in the bathroom–your own bathroom.
    * Don’t eat corn on the cob loudly.

    Maybe this is why I’m not married…

  29. June 12, 2010 10:26 am

    Happy Anniversary! I totally agree on the checking account thing. And all others, actually.

  30. June 12, 2010 5:15 pm

    God you are such a good writer…I’m not married and am the LAST person to give advice…but I love yours…to be honest I don’t think I believe in marriage anymore, I’ve seen far too many go awry and it’s too hard …but I would definitely agree with the separate accounts – unless he’s filthy rich…but even then – take his money and stow it away in your own 😉

  31. June 12, 2010 5:39 pm

    Congratulations! I always love your sarcasm!

    My mom always maintains that one about having a joint checking account and then two seperate ones as being very important. My fiance and I have talked about this and see what a good idea it is!

    Have a great evening! 🙂

  32. highonhealthy permalink
    June 12, 2010 7:10 pm

    Regardless of what you may think, I thought those tips were awesome! Not sharing a bathroom is such a GREAT idea, as is the closet.. and everything else you listed.

  33. June 12, 2010 9:10 pm

    With all the above wishes, I’ll add another Happy 10th Anniversary here.
    Lasting marriage is the takings & givings in the union.
    Add with 6th sense & telepathic mind, marriage is heaven.

  34. June 12, 2010 11:13 pm

    WHat about hiring a housekeeper?

    🙂 I think marriage is harder than childrearing, but that is just FEAR talking (i have niether at the moment). It looks easy, messy, perfect…and yet it is. One second. Then it changes. Right?

  35. June 13, 2010 3:18 am

    Happy Anniversary! I agree with all of your tips! The bathroom is my favorite though! Not going to go into too many details on that one! 😉

  36. June 13, 2010 9:39 am

    Happy anniversary Ameena!

    How funny that you are writing marriage tips from “someone who has no clue” (even though I don’t believe that for a second…I mean, you made it ten years and I haven’t been able to commit to someone for longer than three), and I just basically blogged about relationship tips from someone who definitely has no clue (namely me).

    I love your tips and they are things I have considered in depth when I’ve thought about living with someone. I don’t think I could handle sharing a bathroom or closet with anyone…I can barely handle sharing my bedroom. I like having my own space, what can I say? I think it is important to have that, and to have time to yourself. It helps keep the connection alive because you get on each others nerves less.

    You and Ali seem to have a wonderful relationship. It’s obvious you love each other and that makes me happy (and feel a little more positive).
    By the way, I love Pretty Woman. It was one of my favourite movies back in the day!

  37. Katherine: What About Summer? permalink
    June 13, 2010 12:56 pm

    Happy anniversary. I am going to take these tips to heart! Thank you for sharing. Those are some of my favorite lines from Pretty Woman

  38. June 14, 2010 11:44 am

    Happy Anniversary my friend 🙂 We have got our 3rd coming up in August 🙂

  39. June 14, 2010 9:51 pm

    This is a great post Ameena and congrats on the anniversary! I am not even a year in a relationship but we spend most time in the same place (since we work and I stay at his place often) so definitely feel separate bathrooms and closets will be ideal for the future… in no matter what relationship I am in. Love the Pretty Women quote…hilarious.

  40. June 15, 2010 4:58 am

    Happy Anniversary, Ameena and Ali! Hope you guys have many more years to come…

  41. June 15, 2010 9:08 am

    I just found your blog today…and I’m loving it! Congrats on your anniversary. My husband and I just celebrated our first, and I’m already amazed at how much work a marriage requires. Your pictures of your evening were both beautiful and fun. It sounds like it was a lovely evening. Thank you for sharing!

  42. June 15, 2010 12:09 pm

    Congtats on your anniversary, what a milestone 🙂 wishing you many happy years together. Love your advice
    *kisses* HH

  43. June 16, 2010 2:44 am

    Happy Anniversary to you and Ali! Here’s wishing you many more years of fun 😛


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