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Module 2: RESPECT OTHERS

(Page 12) Worksheet 5

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STILL DRIVING TOGETHER AFTER SIXTY YEARS

INTERVIEWER: How old were you when you first met?

GLADYS: I was seventeen and Sam was my driving instructor. After I passed my test he kept coming around to my home to "see if I was still the excellent driver he had made me". I didn't like him at first but my mother did! Two years later we got engaged and when I was twenty-one we got married. The first year of marriage was the worst year of my life but I wouldn't be without him now.

INTERVIEWER: What do you think were the roots that made your relationship strong enough to last more than sixty years?

SAM: Promises are important roots for a lasting relationship. We decided to make a promise to each other in front of God and our friends to stick together for life. When things were difficult I would remember the promise I made to Gladys and knew I could not break it.

INTERVIEWER: How did you settle quarrels?

SAM: Gladys is stubborn and I am quick-tempered, but any difficult situations were usually put right with humour or giving ourselves a cooling-off period. We've always been equal partners. I cannot ever remember telling Gladys to do something. We always ask each other to do things. That's because we respect each other.

GLADYS: There's got to be lots of give and take. I made my home and husband my priority. I did a lot of things outside the home but I aimed to get back before he did and if we went out in the evenings we did things together like going dancing and out with friends. We had many visitors, because we've always liked to be with others. Sam liked golf and football so, on some week-ends, he would go off to those. I sometimes went but not often. I loved gardening, so we'd plan it together and then I'd do the work!

SAM: To keep a good relationship you need to be outward-looking. It's no good just living for each other. You always need something to look forward to and to plan for together. You mustn't take yourself too seriously either.

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