What’s that expression the family that plays together stays together? I believe there’s some truth in that. I also believe it’s true that the couple that laughs together regularly is more likely to stay together longer and more happily.
Life can get so hectic and stressful at times. OK, I heard that “duh”, but I want to remind you this week of the importance of laughter within a marriage.
Actually laughter has many health benefits. In fact there is an entire science called gelotology which is dedicated to the study of the health benefits of laughter.
It’s said that laughter can reduce blood pressure by increasing vascular blood flow and oxygenation of the blood. Now I’m not a medical doctor, but that sure sounds like a benefit to me.
Laughter is a good physical workout as it exercises muscles in the diaphragm, face, leg and back. The respiratory system also gets worked well during hearty laughter and stress hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline are reduced.
Laughter is said to improve one’s immune system and improve alertness, creativity and memory. Someone remind me please that I may need to laugh more- just in case I forget.
So to do my part in improving your overall health and that of your marriage allow me to share with you some words of wit I have picked up along my life’s journey.
I heard of a nine year old boy named Johnny who was spending a few days visiting his grandmother. He came in from playing one day and asked his grandmother what it’s called when two people sleep in the same room and one is on top of the other. Grandmother was a little taken back, but she decided to tell him the truth. She said “it’s called having sex” to which the boy replied “ok” and went back out to play.
A short while later Johnny came in rather irritated and told grandma it is not having sex. He went on to tell her the correct answer is bunk beds and that his friend’s mother wants to have a chat with her.
When it comes to marriage there seems to be a never-ending supply of advice which folks are more than willing to share- much of which I find humorous. Rita Rudner offers the following: “I think men who have a pierced ear are better prepared for marriage. They’ve experienced pain and bought jewelry.”
Other sage advice for marriage comes from Allan who was 10 when he said: “you got to find somebody who likes the same stuff. Like if you like sports, she should like it that you like sports and she should keep the chips and dip coming.”
Kirsten, age 10, suggests that: “no person really decides before they grow up who they’re going to marry. God decides it all way before, and you got to find out later who you’re stuck with.”
If you’re wondering when you should get married, Cam age 10 says “twenty-three is the best age to marry because you know the person FOREVER by then!”
And, lastly, the true essence of marriage is given to us by Marlon, age 10 who said: “a man and a woman promise to go through sickness, illness and diseases together.”
Like I said, advice for marriage abounds. Please note I did not say all advice is appropriate or beneficial or wise.
Someone once said “you don’t stop laughing because you grow old. You grow old because you stop laughing.” So if it’s been a while since you and your spouse have done some serious laughing together may I suggest you not waste many more moments before correcting this imbalance in your lives.
Ron Price is the co-founder and Executive Director of the Four Corners Coalition for Marriage & Family, a 501-C-3 organization dedicated to strengthening and equipping marriages and families in the Four Corners Area. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 505 327-7870.