6 useful tips to keep in mind when going into a second marriage

6 useful tips to keep in mind when going into a second marriage

A beautiful Indian advertisement draws our attention to issues of divorce and re-marriage. Here are 6 useful tips if you're considering re-marriage. Don't forget to make your voice heard in our poll at the end of the story.

What do you think about divorce and re-marriage? They are touchy topics and can get even more complicated when kids are involved.

I believe that if two people are unhappy in their marriage and just cannot seem to make it work after trying hard, divorce and maybe re-marriage down the track could be the way to go, even if there are children involved.

But that's just my personal opinion. Living in Asia, even though negative attitudes to divorce and re-marriage are slowly changing, second marriages are still considered taboo by many.

So when this ad by Tanishq, a famous jewellery company in India, hit the screens, it caused quite a stir.

The ad shows a beautiful bride getting married as her little daughter watches on, impatient to be a part of the marriage ceremony.

The groom decides to include his soon-to-be step-daughter in the ceremonies and carries her as they complete their beautiful wedding ritual.

The ad ends with the little girl smiling and asking in Hindi: "Should I call you daddy from today?"

Tanishq - Revamping old taboos, remarriage Should I call you Daddy?

The advertisement has been praised by many for celebrating remarriage in a country where in some areas, poor widows are still abandoned and treated as social outcasts.

But second marriages in India are not uncommon, especially among the upper and upper-middle classes. There are even websites that help divorcees look for new partners, showing that attitudes are changing.

The ad opens our eyes to attitudes about re-marriage - not just in India but in the rest of Asia, including Singapore.

Have you ever thought about what people here in Singapore think about second marriages? And what do you need to consider if you are going in to a second marriage?

Marriage can be a beautiful partnership between 2 people who love and respect each other very much. But sometimes marriages fail - it can happen to the best of couples.

All married couples encounter problems from time to time, but if these problems are unresolved (or unresolvable), a marriage can end in divorce.

A marriage can also end if, sadly, one partner dies. But does the end of a marriage for whatever reason/s need to signal the end of the road for those involved? Not necessarily.

second marriage Re-marriage can be good for health

Re-marriage can actually be good for a person's mental health. According to a study conducted by the University of Chicago that looked at the link between health and marriage, re-marriage can help a person especially if they have a condition like depression.

Here in Singapore we are lucky that attitudes to second marriages are more progressive and open than in some other Asian countries. Last year, about a quarter (17%) of total marriages in Singapore were remarriages (www.singstat.gov.sg).

A second marriage can be quite different to a first marriage on many levels and knowing what to keep in mind when getting into a second marriage is important.

second marriage Making a second marriage work has its challenges

6 useful tips to keep in mind when going into a second marriage

1. What went wrong the first time? It's so easy to blame mistakes made in a first marriage on your ex-partner.

But according to marriage guru Stephanie Coontz, you have to be prepared to admit that whatever went wrong in your first marriage wasn't exclusively your ex-spouse's fault.

Coontz has interviewed many re-married couples whose second marriages have lasted longer than their first. She found out that a reason for their success was their willingness to take responsibility for some of the things that went wrong the first time round.

2. Don't rush into re-marriage. Research shows that divorce is more likely in a second marriage if the relationship is less than 1 year old. In other words, it could just be a 're-bound relationship'.

Take time to get to know your new partner, especially if there are kids involved.

3. Avoid comparing partners. Once a person re-marries, they may find themselves comparing their new spouse to their ex-spouse -- this is human nature especially if the person had been previously married for a long time.

Try not to do this as your new partner, as a unique human being, will also have personality traits that are negative and positive. These may be completely different or opposing to the traits your ex-spouse displayed.

4. Don't forget the little things. Marriage experts say that a mistake many people make is to stop doing the little things that make dating so exciting.

This applies to second marriages too. So don't stop doing things like sending flowers and cards, giving massages or cooking favourite dishes. Don't let the romance die even if you've 'been there and done that' before!

5. Make your sex life important. According to Dr Tina Tessina who is a well-known marriage expert, it's really important to ensure communication about sexual issues is open in a second marriage.

She advises that “sex is a great way to comfort each other, to reassure each other, and to heal emotional rifts that may be a result of a previous marriage gone sour".

second marriage How to handle bringing kids into a second marriage?

6. Blending families. It can be challenging if either partner is bringing children from an earlier marriage. But there's a lot of research out there that tackles this issue.

Experts say that when it comes to kids and blending families, the key is to ease kids slowly and gently into the new relationship.

For this, you need time, and time is also what is needed for a bond to develop that is not forced or unnatural. But sometimes, this just won't happen however much time and effort you devote.

If this is the case, the biological parent should be supportive of his or her spouse and take on greater responsibility for disciplining the children, as well as spending quality 'alone' time with them to reassure the child that he/she is not losing a parent.

We hope you find this article informative and interesting. What's your opinion on re-marriage? Take the poll below and make your opinion count!

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