Tax write-offs? Until death do us part? A promise of forever and a constant support system?

Whether you’re a cynic or a romanticist, the truth is there are many benefits and sacrifices involved when it comes to marriage. So many have tried to generalize the institution and give advice on how to make it work.

I’m no expert. However, in the six years, I’ve been married, I’ve learned this: If you want to quickly divide a room, simply bring up the term “marriage.” You’ll be simultaneously bombarded with facts about why it’s the greatest social convention ever created and why it’s the worst.

Disagreements about identity, finances, divorce, biology, intimacy, and all sorts of other issues will quickly arise, and you’ll realize the one truth everyone can agree on: The success or failure of marriage truly depends on the parties involved.

In recent months, I’ve seen quite a bit of negativity about marriage. I’ve read articles about how my marriage may be ruining my identity, my perspective, my sex life, and every other aspect you can think of.

I admit that marriage is hellishly hard. There are true sacrifices made every single day in order to meld two different lives together into a functioning, cohesive vision. It’s not easy being one of two.

Still, over the years, I’ve also uncovered so many benefits. Sure, there’s the romantic notion of being with your best friend every single day. There are the quote pillows and sweet sentiments about soulmates, about lovemaking one better, and about fulfillment.

As a romance writer and as a woman married to the person she met at the age of 12—yes, I perhaps fall on the hopeless romantic side—I must admit that I do believe the benefits of marriage far outweigh the negatives.

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