Day 20: You Can’t Pick Your Family…Or Can You?

Like most young people starting to date, I received a lot of advice. One tidbit that stuck with me was to remember that you’re not just marrying your spouse, but you’re marrying his whole family. While not totally insurmountable, I think the abilty to get along with your in-laws is absolutely one of the most important things to consider when a relationship turns serious.

Ten years ago today, I was blessed by marrying Big C on a beautiful late fall day, and also by being accepted into his family.


Like it or not, your family situation during your childhood shapes who you become as an adult. Attitudes and traditions learned in your youth are deep-seeded and can sometimes cause a little friction when you’re faced for the first time with deciding whose house to visit on Christmas Eve or the “right” way to spend time on vacation. (For the record, my family goes on vacation to do things. His goes to relax. It’s great to be able to do both!)

J Family

Even more important than favorite foods or holiday traditions are the morals and values taught by parents and grandparents, aunts and uncles, and relationships formed with siblings and cousins. A child who grows up in a loving, faithful family environment will very likely become a loving, faithful, family-oriented adult. That’s what I intend for Little C to experience, and the kind of person I hope she seeks out one day.

I’m blessed that Big C was brought up in a family who loves God and each other, and truly enjoys spending time together. I’ve been fortunate enough to know all four of his grandparents, and he knew all four of mine. We even had all eight living on our wedding day, which was very special for us, and even better is Little C being able to know five of her great-grandparents.

H Family

We have good times with our siblings, aunts, uncles, and cousins and are very excited as the family grows and Little C becomes part of the next generation.

I’m already praying that if she is to marry someday, that the little boy who will someday become my son-in-law is growing up in the kind of family that will bring him up well and welcome Little C with open arms. I also pray that day is many, many years in the future! As fast as our first decade of marriage has gone, I’m afraid of how much faster the next decades will go by.

Little C, my little farm girl, choose your future husband wisely, and don’t forget that you’re not only choosing him, but his whole family as well.


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