Today in Relief Society the teacher opened the lesson by asking if any of us had examples of couples whose marriage we really admire. I immediately thought of an answer and smiled to myself, but the teacher saw me and asked who I had in mind, so I had to tell her:
Coach and Tami Taylor from Friday Night Lights.
Except it's true, y'all! They are awesome. As I tried to explain to the room full of blank stares, I admire that the writers really seem to have gotten it right--this is a couple who has a strong marriage, and the respect and love they have for each other always comes through, even when they argue.
(And I'm not the only person who thinks so. There are tumblrs and everything.)
At that, a few older ladies cited their own parents' marriage as ones they admire, making sure to add that their parents never argued. (Uh huh.)
Anyway, when I reported my class contribution to my pop-culture-loving husband after church, I think it made him love me that much more. Thanks again, Taylors!
This made me think about the Marriage Prep class I took once at BYU (of course I did, everyone did, hello). Actually, wait, I technically took two--one from the School of Family Life and one from the Religion department. So, you know. Bases. Covered. Was fascinating to contrast and compare the two:
Religion department instructor: "I recommend that you not do any reading or study about intimacy before you marry. The Spirit will tell you what to do." (Note: No, He/She/It won't.)
Family Science instructor: "I don't care what your bishop says--disclosure of sexual history before marriage is important because repentance can't fix AIDS, kiddos. Now let's discuss the seminal pool."
Can you guess which class was more useful? The textbook for the religion class was just a compilation of General Conference talks and Ensign magazine articles going back several decades, including one that contained a story about a woman who honored her perpetually unemployed husband's status as provider by not getting a job herself or seeking government assistance but instead by living out in a shack in the woods for years without electricity while collecting rainwater for their children to drink and bathe in. Even before I became a crazy feminist, I knew that was not an inspiring story. That was, like, Winter's Bone.
Anyway, the Marriage Prep instructor from the School of Family Life, who was a PhD student training to be a marriage and family therapist, said that his favorite couple on television were Paul and Jamie Buchman from Mad about You. Remember that show? He said they had the best fights--they stayed to the point and avoided "kitchen sinking," they didn't spiral down to name-calling, they just really did it well. He even brought in a few clips to show us during class sessions about communication.
So. I feel absolutely justified in my choice. Anybody else want to share the names of the fictional people that inform and influence their real-life relationships?