Ask Team Practical: Dangerous Hobbies


If only he loved fantasy football

by Liz Moorhead, Ask Team Practical

Ask Team Practical: Dangerous Hobbies | A Practical Wedding

Q: I have the incredible fortune of being with the man of my dreams (as uber-cliche as it sounds, it’s true). One of things that I am most grateful for in our relationship is how incredibly supportive we are of each other. There’s nothing begrudging about it; he greets my dreams and ambitions with genuine encouragement and the occasional round of playing Devil’s Advocate when the need arises (he helps keep me grounded). On the flip side, B makes me feel like I’m dating Superman in all his handsome, loving, muscular, shiny glory. And that’s where I struggle.

The driving force in B’s life, since age eighteen, is whitewater kayaking (he’s almost thirty-five now). That’s what initially drew us together; our first date was kayaking followed by dinner and a trip to the local hot springs. He’s much better at it than I am (which is completely okay), but when I say he’s better at it, I mean that he’s probably one of the top one hundred expedition whitewater kayakers on the continent.

Here’s the thing. Off the top of my head, I can think of six kayakers who have been killed in the past year, one of which was a personal friend. Most were freak accidents, although with two of them no one really knows what happened (they were alone at the time of the accident). I know that B is incredibly competent and never goes in alone; I have heard many stories from people who have gone on trips with him and were amazed at his ability to hang in there and keep a clear head when things didn’t go as planned. But I still get afraid, still lose sleep over wondering what the next phone call will be or if the next “kayaker gone missing” news flashes will turn out to be him. One of his greatest ambitions is the Grand Canyon of the Stikine in northwestern British Columbia, the veritable Everest of whitewater. I want him to go, to fulfill his dreams, to conquer the greatest known challenge of the whitewater world. But I also don’t want him to go and end up dying like that guy did last summer, and I don’t want my fear to bring him down or make him ultimately decide to forgo the opportunity.

How do I celebrate and support the incredible dreams of the man with whom I will share my life without letting the fear of becoming an early widow overshadow the joy of it all?

—K

A: Dear K,

If his passion is death-defying whitewater craziness, you’re signing onto that for life. It’s scary. But, this guy you love wouldn’t be the same guy without his wild passions. They’re a part of what make him who he is, and (admit it!) a part of why you love him so much. You didn’t pick out a guy who loves his fantasy football league. You picked a guy who loves real life whitewater kayaking. Strip someone of what he loves, and he’ll be pretty miserable, and probably unrecognizable.

So, does he know you worry about him? You mentioned not wanting to hold him back, but it’s only fair that he knows how you feel. Flip it, and wouldn’t you want to know if there was something tying him up in knots of worry over you? I’m guessing you would, and sharing your concerns (even a few of the crazy ones) is an important piece of relationship communication. You don’t have to try to talk him out of it, but it could make you feel better just voicing these fears.

Use that conversation to discuss possible safeguards that will help put you at ease. Will you feel better if he has someone with him? If he goes at a specific time of year? If he swears on a stack of Bibles to wear whatever protective gear kayak people wear? (What do kayak people wear?) You mentioned that he grounds you, which is awesome. Sometimes one of the ways we ground one another is in that “wake up to the possibilities here!” sort of way. Maybe there is a possibility of figuring out a way for you to feel comforted, while he takes precautions and does what he loves.

That’s about all you can do. Let him know you worry, ask him to be safe. And then let him do his thing.

Of course you’ll still have nagging worries and doubts about him. This is a pretty scary thing. I know that this is where you want me to tell you how to obliterate them completely and just wholeheartedly cheer him on. But, your fears are not off base. And in general, worry is sort of the cost of caring about someone. Fiercely caring about someone inherently comes with the risk of losing them, and that sometimes means choking back a bit of fear.

TEAM PRACTICAL, how do you come to terms with the fear of losing your partner?

If you would like to ask Team Practical a question please don’t be shy! You can email Liz at: askteampractical [at] apracticalwedding [dot] com. If you would prefer to not be named, anonymous questions are also accepted.

Liz Moorhead

Liz is an illustrator and writer who paints custom stationery and types up impassioned opinions about weddings, etiquette, feminism and motherhood (usually while shaking a fist and mumbling expletives around mouthfuls of cheese fries). Her spare time is spent sipping bourbon with her husband and playing Don’t Throw That in the Toilet with her son.

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  • Amy March

    I think also you might want to look into strategies for managing anxiety. Too often I think we view them as ways to handle irrational anxiety (and obviously you have real concerns) but meditation, yoga, deep breathing, prayer etc. whatever speaks to you, but there are lots of ways to try and manage this in a way that’s less stomach clenching for you.

    • Hope

      I would add acupuncture to that list. It really helped rid me of a mild but annoying anxious-thought, frequently-feeling-nervous habit that I picked up in grad school. Anxiety is so embodied, sometimes it helps to support the body in letting go of it in addition to wrangling your thought life.

  • dcblackgirl

    tbh, this whole situation in Ferguson has made me acutely aware of the possibility for losing my FI in some horrible through no fault of his own way. constant communication is helpful in that regard. well maybe not constant, but checking in with each other regularly has become a whole lot more important.

  • Jules

    Amy and Liz are spot-on: you accept it, try to put it in perspective, and manage the anxiety. Mine is an avid skydiver and cyclist. Those carry risks, too, and it DID make me feel better just to remind him, “I need you to come back, so be careful. Please.”

    The other way I handle those hobbies, though, is to think about the risk of dying from just about anything else….car accidents for example. Chances are MUCH, MUCH higher for that than practically all sports except base jumping and some really risky ones like mountaineering in Nepal. (I’m not sure what the case is for a Class V or VI whitewater rapid, but it could be applicable.)

    It doesn’t make me feel better in an absolute sense (OMG what if he gets in a car wreck?!), but it gives me perspective, and then I work on accepting that we just can’t suspend our lives for those risks. We just mitigate them as much as humanly possible and enjoy the ride.

    • ferrous

      Seconding the advice to find a little mantra to remind him to be safe. (Mr. ferrous is a cyclist and ice climber.) The mantra probably does more for me, but I like to think it reminds him we are a family before he does this risky thing. We have a little sketch routine, it helps.

    • Sarah E

      I employ the same strategy. For me, the worry comes out when he’s traveling for conferences because I know he’s liable to go exploring a new city on his own, which makes my stomach clench. But I remind him to be safe, that I want him home to live a long life with me and he respects that. The hard part is when his idea of a reasonable risk and mine don’t match up.

      And I do remind myself that it’s far more likely to lose him in a car accident. Which, like Jules said, not great, but does put into perspective whether I live my life worrying or not.

  • RugbyGirl

    I come from the other side of this. I play rugby which crazy scares my SO. I love the sport. I’ve played since high school. It makes me feel strong, but concussions, broken bones, other injuries, and risk of paralysis or death are a part of this life. He lets me know he worries and I do my best to respect that by playing hard but not going crazy HAM out on the pitch. I try to teach him about the techniques we use for playing as safely as possible. It’s the best balance we’ve managed to strike where you have to live equally with the love, support, and respect you have for each other and the discomfort and fear. And it’s something we talk about on a regular basis so that nothing festers.

    TL;DR: No advice but lots of support and best wishes from the other side of the situation.

    • Daisy6564

      Former rugger here. I remember we spent A LOT of time on proper tackling technique to avoid injury. It always seemed to me that that fact there were no pads in rugby meant that we were more concerned with form than american football players.

      That said, i did quit at 21 when a bad knee injury (from a bad tackle) made me realize that I did not love the sport enough to risk permanently injuring myself over it. Every now and again I miss it.

  • lady brett

    “worry is sort of the cost of caring about someone”

  • emilyg25

    My father is a mountaineer, so I grew up with the worry you’re experiencing. Eventually, I realized that this is what my dad loves, and if he died, he would die doing what he loved. Somehow, I was able to find comfort in that. I still wish he wouldn’t climb mountains alone, but it’s not something I can control. Likewise, my brother is a hardcore surfer. He was out surfing that hurricane swell in Southern California yesterday. Yes, it terrifies me. I don’t know what I would do if something happened to my brother or my dad. But I know how much they adore their crazy hobbies, how much peace and joy they get from them. Even if I could, I’d never take that away from them.

    • Pbeth

      Likewise, my husband loves playing in the mountains (hiking, climbing, backcountry skiing, etc). It always makes me nervous when he goes out, but it is the life he loves. To help me manage the anxiety and to keep him safe, we basically follow best-practices for playing in the wilderness. Before every trip, I know what trail-head he’s leaving from, his proposed routes, his expected time back in cell service and a time to call the rangers and report him missing if he hasn’t checked in. We also have an agreement that he only goes out with other responsible folks who are also up on the relevant safety training, be it wilderness first aid or avalanche safety. I find it comforting to know he is with other capable people and that there’s no use worrying before his expected back-in-cell-service time.

      • Lawyerette510

        I think the part about trusting the people your SO does the activities with is a huge help and a great point. My husband no longer rock climbs with people who take risks my husband feels are unnecessary like skimping on water, doing routes that are way run out, skimping on protection, etc. just knowing that and knowing his partners helps a lot.

      • Natalie

        I think the point of trusting your loved one’s friends is huge. Many of these extreme sports rely on teams of people working together to keep everyone safe. So trusting the judgement of your loved one’s dangerous activity partners can help put you at ease. Bad partners can encourage risk taking or put others at risk with their own risk taking or irresponsible behaviors. For example, I once went rock climbing with a friend’s boyfriend who got really high while climbing. Fine for him to climb that way, but I was pissed when I realized he had been belaying me while high. That’s not a risk I want to take. I don’t climb with him anymore. Knowing that I’m strict about safety and responsibility and trust with my climbing partners definitely puts my FH at ease.

        • KimBee

          When I read this the first time, I interpreted ‘who got really high while climbing’ to mean that he climbed very high up, and I was envisioning him belaying from above which is also probably pretty risky behavior.

          • Natalie

            haha. yeah, I meant that he was completely stoned. And I had no idea until after the fact, because I’m kinda clueless.

            When I relayed the story to my FH, it actually made him feel more comfortable with my climbing to know that I immediately blackballed this guy from my climbing friend group.

        • Lawyerette510

          That’s really pretty f**ked up for that guy, it’s one thing to get high and lead or solo, but if you’re belaying some one else they’re trusting you.Good for you not giving him another chance to put you at risk.

  • Jessica

    Spot on advice! My husband is a rock climber, solo, alpine, ice etc. It terrifies me but I love him and this is what he loves and I support him fiercely. We’ve talked through safety measures and it truly eases my worries. Also God Bless personal safety beacons!

  • AmandaT

    This is advice nails it, and nails it for anyone who cares about someone. It doesn’t matter if they kayak or skydive or sit on the couch all day. You worry. You worry because the thought of losing them staggers you every time it creeps up. I have a one year old daughter and she doesn’t do any of those things and I feel disoriented and sick to my stomach at the thought of something happening to her. You are going to worry regardless, your SO might as well be doing something he or she loves as you try to manage.

  • Lawyerette510

    To echo the great coents of everyone below whose partners love something with physical risk involved, my husband is a rock climber and we met as he was quitting his job to take time off to climb and surf. The harder I fell for him the more I found myself worrying. What made it better is when he talked to me about both his goals and where he draws the line in terms of risk taking and managing those risks. Sometimes there is still room for improvement, like when he forgets to tell me about a change of plans and is home 5 hours later than expected. That said, when it came time to making the decision to get married, I didn’t pause for a second knowing that his love of climbing, surfing and cycling meant for risk of bodily harm, not did I consider his history of stage 0 skin cancer and the likelihood that he would have more. All of that is who he is, and over the 5 years we were together before we were engaged we worked out standards and ways of communicating that allowed h to pursue his passions but also made me feel like he was doing all the things he should so he could come home at the end of the day. And now 3 months into our marriage it’s not the adventure activities that have us on edge, it’s more skin cancer that is more serious. So my point is, you love the person, you love the risks associated with who they are passion wise and health wise and you work together as a couple to find ways about communicating and each engaging in your passions and taking care of your health and safety that work for both of you.

  • 39bride

    Liz nails it (as usual): “But, this guy you love wouldn’t be the same guy without his
    wild passions…Strip someone of what he loves, and he’ll be pretty
    miserable, and probably unrecognizable.” I have a lot of friends in military aviation and I’ve seen this phenomenon in action. It’s absolutely true. It’s hard to love people who love danger, but it’s that danger-love that makes them the people they are.

    I had a therapist who used to say that death/loss is the unavoidable price we all pay for being human (we all die eventually); the question is whether or not we live a life that makes that huge price worth paying, since we all have to pay it anyway. In other words, make the inevitable pain worth it by opening yourself to all the wonderful parts of life that exist alongside that pain. It’s a tough lesson and one that I’m still working on. But it also enabled me to look at a friend who died doing what he loved and realize that I was incredibly lucky to have had him in my life at all, and I would rather have known him for the time I did and lose him painfully, than be the person I’d be if I’d never met him.

  • Kate

    My SO is also an avid kayaker, backcountry hiker, and general mountain man. He’s soon to depart for a 2 week trek in the middle of Alaska (with 8 other people; he’s not TOTALLY crazy), and I share your same concerns.

    Something that has helped tremendously in the past (and that he’s agreed to do this time) is renting a satellite phone. One of the functions of these phones (at least in my experience) is the “Everything is OK!” button. It works sort of like this: the trekkers compile a list of email addresses on a distribution list, then every night a designated person presses the “OK” button, sending a generic “We are OK” email to everyone on the list. There is also a separate list and button for “Nothing is OK” and phone functionality for when shit gets real. I’ve expressed to him my concerns and stressed the importance of these regular check-ins, and he totally understands my fears and is willing to do his part to alleviate them. Maybe this system could work for you?

    TL;DR: Satellite phones are awesome.

    • Natalie

      I do field biology work in remote regions of South America for a month or two a year. Our lab has a satellite phone, and it’s great. With our sat phone plan, text messages are free. So we regularly check in. We haven’t had to use it in an emergency situation, but it makes us (and our families) feel much better about what would happen if things went wrong.

    • K

      We had SPOT device with the “I’m OK” button to send to a preset list of email addresses along with GPS coordinates, but after three days (of a seven-day expedition) the SPOT quit working. I was *this* close to calling SAR, but I remembered that B has always said to give him a chance to get himself out first. So I waited until the day they were supposed to be out, and sure enough, he was okay.

      Do you guys use a different device? The SPOT has been relegated to a dusty shelf in the shed.

      • Kate

        They did use a SPOT a couple years ago for a week-long trip and it seemed to work fine (searching old emails is like an awesome, personal time capsule!). I don’t know what device they are planning to use for this trip.

        It seems like the SPOT should have some sort of warranty. Maybe you could send it in for a unit that actually works? (Oh look! I found it! SPOT Warranty Website for the US: http://www.findmespot.com/en/index.php?cid=210)

      • CJ the Kayaker-And-Stuff

        A bit late to the party here, but I use a DeLorme inReach SE. It costs more (for the device and for the service) than SPOT, but it’s two-way text messaging and live tracking. You get live verification from the constellation that each of your messages (and trackpoints) were successfully sent. With SPOT, you’re just transmitting blindly and assuming it… probably… went through. (So, if I see a bunch of updates not making it through, I could do a little diversion to send a “Don’t worry, I’m fine. The terrain/weather are just impairing transmission a bit.” message.)

        I just did a 109-mile, 8-island solo trip in three days of kayaking off the Mississippi coast. All along the way, I could send (at no additional cost) predefined notes when I was underway and stopping. Automatic live tracking every 10 minutes while underway was uploaded to the “cloud”. And if necessary, I had two-way text messaging and real, we-mean-it SOS capability. I shared the map link so others could follow along, which was fun.

        (I also have cell coverage much of the time, marine radio coverage throughout, no fewer than three GPS sources, and so on, but the live satellite tracking apparently really helped with the peace of mind side of things back home. If mb accompanies me on a camping trip to one of the islands, I’m sure her mom will *really* appreciate the inReach, even if it is only nine miles offshore.)

    • Crayfish Kate

      This sounds fantastic!

  • Leah

    I totally hear this. My now-husband is in the same scene for ski mountaineering – really pushing the sport, has many many first descents of previously un-skiied lines in the Northern Rockies. Often this includes a lot of un-roped ice and rock climbing, and he generally does his big objectives solo. Similarly to you, this is something we do together, and also how we met, though his skill and risk-taking far outstrips mine. This is what lights him up, and not something I’ve ever asked him to stop doing (and damn, it’s hardcore & sexy), though of course I worry.

    BUT, something that you guys might want to talk about if you haven’t:
    We have had many conversations about the fact that a large percentage of people pushing the envelope in the mountains are killed. That is an accepted risk of many of these activities, and we both admire the people who accept that risk. However, we both feel that having children changes these priorities. B has told me that it bothers him that mountaineers who become fathers don’t dial back the risk. He believes that if you want to lay your life on the line to push the limits of what people can do in the mountains, that’s a valid life choice, and if you are willing to be with someone who does that, that’s your informed decision, but that kids don’t sign up for that. He has told me from the beginning that if/when we have kids, he’ll take a bit of a step back from the risk edge (though still of course play in the mountains a lot) – not because he feels he has to, but because he feels that’s the trade-off in priorities that one should make as an adult, and that he wants to make.

    Of course there’s no one right answer when it comes to risk, but if you are considering kids at some point, it’s worth talking that through.

    (Also, in our wedding last month, one of his vows was a promise to always come home from the mountains. So I’m holding him to it)

    • Elizabeth

      Thank you for this. I was typing up a comment addressing how children can affect the answer to the LW’s questions, but you said it so well that I’ll stop! Life changes in so many ways when you become a parent. Namely, you need to show up. This applies whether you have dangerous hobbies or completely harmless ones for which you merely need to spend less time on. I don’t think that changes the core of who a person is, but acknowledges shifting responsibilities.

    • Natalie

      I think you’re spot-on here. I’ve seen many friends go through similar decision making processes when they have kids. They have this instinctive fear of what would happen to their kids if they died or were seriously injured. I think it’s important if you plan to have kids to talk about this with your partner.

    • Kara E

      Makes sense. I think it also makes sense to get stuff written down and shared right away (wills, account information, etc.). If, God forbid, something SHOULD happen, at least everyone knows things aren’t ull undone.

      My husband’s nowhere near that intense, but travels a lot and road bikes a lot and having a plan (especially now that we have a kid) has lowered my anxiety about the possible risks a great deal.

  • Sparkles

    Oh dear, this, except with my husband it’s his job that’s dangerous. He works around heavy equipment every day and you hear about people losing limbs, getting crushed, just a split second of exhaustion or inattention and that’s it. I don’t find it productive to worry about these things (no advice on how I got there, sorry).

    I have had several talks about this with my partner, though, and each time he’s reassured me how safe he tries to be. It helps, and I do my bit by encouraging him to get enough sleep, reminding him to take breaks. And I don’t know if it does anything, but I tend to send him off for the day with a “be safe”. I’m a fairly pragmatic person, and when I approach situations where I feel helpless, I try to find the ways I can do something supportive, even if it’s tiny. So if it’s trying to make sure we get enough sleep at night, then that’s what I’ll do.

    Like Liz said, you wouldn’t have the same partner if he didn’t love kayaking, and he probably knows that it’s dangerous. Talk to him about how he feels, and then figure out a way to live with your fear. And maybe make it productive somehow?

  • Gina

    “Strip someone of what he loves, and he’ll be pretty miserable, and probably unrecognizable.”
    This exactly. I’m married to a rock climber, and not just a normal, sport-route, 5.10 rock climber– a big-wall, trad, death-defying rock climber. We had an incident not long ago where I was belaying him, he fell, the gear didn’t hold, and he fell 80 feet, stopping just 10 feet above the ground. Did this scare the ever-loving shit out of me? Yes. Will I ever ask him to stop climbing? No. He loves it. It makes him, him. It makes him the man I fell in love with. I signed on for this, and I honestly try not to worry about it because it’s far more likely he’ll get killed in a routine car accident. I’ve spent my whole life doing one extreme sport or another, so perhaps that’s part of it–I understand that living without these sports, for me, is not really living.

  • jhj

    i love this. i feel this way not only about my husband, who in his everyday life is not so much of a risk-taker, but who this week is at Burning Man [yes...insert whatever you feel about that here, I get it]–but honestly, about all of the men i love in my life. my dad is an avid waterskiier/surfer/camper who is now in his mid-60s and has had his fair share of scrapes and misadventures. my brother has had a love affair with every sport involving a board and i try not to think too hard about it when he’s surfing post-hurricanes in hawaii. my mom’s approach to this has always been to be honest and use humor. her longstanding joke with my dad is that she married him to have more fun, and he married her to avoid accidentally killing himself. thankfully these are all humans who at their core live for passions outside themselves, which is one of the reasons i love them. most of the people i love who are adventurers also do their fair share of research, reading, background checks, etc., which can go a long way to alleviate fears [though not all of them].

    we take risks when we drive, when we fly, and, judging by recent events, when we walk down the street. for the kayakers and skiiers and burners in our lives, i’m grateful for what they’ve taught me about acknowledging real fear, assessing risk, and committing to a full life whenever possible.

    • eao

      I’m curious how you handle the outsider perception of your husband attending the Burn without you? I have had this experience (when he wasn’t yet my husband) and I did not fair well with all the ridicule….

      • jhj

        honestly, i don’t think about it too much. Burning Man has been important to him for several years, and every year he asks if I want to go, and the honest truth of it is, I don’t want to, but I have no problem with him going, because it’s clear it’s important to him. in many ways it is an exercise in trust for us both which has made our relationship stronger. his BM friends always ask why i don’t go, and in reply i say, i’ll go camping with you elsewhere, any time of the year! :) my husband intimated this year that this might be his last year…though he has at other times said he wants me to go once so we can renew our vows. i’m on board with that, so long as we get an airstream trailer!

  • ella

    One of my good friends used to be one of the top 5 free divers in the world. His wife felt the same way – loved him for it, but worried every single time he practiced or competed. She told me over time she learned her own way of managing her anxieties, which included her own sets of rituals for stress reduction on competition days. If he is going to be out there doing it, is there something you can do then that you love? Go camping or hiking? Get a massage? Take a run or go to yoga? You won’t stop worrying, but you’ll have somewhere to re-direct that nervous energy.

    My friend’s wife told me that at the end of the day, we never know what’s going to happen, regardless of what we’re doing. The best she could do was communicate her worry with her husband, so he could re-iterate all the training and safety precautions in place, and then find a way to manage her own feelings, since that worry never went away.

    • JDrives

      I love this advice to find some great self-care activities while Partner is away doing awesome/dangerous things.

    • Lawyerette510

      Yes, I also found that making plans to do things I enjoy when my husband is out rock climbing reduces my opportunity to worry, because I’m not hanging at home thinking about it, instead I’m getting a massage, spending time with friends, absorbed in a good book etc.

    • Sarah

      Hmm.. This seems like great advice. My SO is planning to go back to his country of birth in a few months… the first time he has visited since he left at age two. The government travel advice for the country warns of that kidnappings, armed robbery and the like are common, and his family have warned him not to go. However, his curiosity about his birthplace has been with him for a long time and I know he needs to see it for himself. On the one hand I want him to go and see where he comes from, but on the other hand I want him to stay so I know he’s safe. Planning something nice that will keep me sane while he’s away is a good plan.

  • Kathy

    My husband and I are kayakers and river guides, currently working in the Grand Canyon. My husband competed internationally in kayaking for many years and is much, much better than I am, of the caliber to kayak the Stikine. Three years ago this month, he and a lifelong friend were paddling a stretch of continuous Class V and our friend died from a head injury and drowning. My husband got him to shore and tried to revive him, but wasn’t able to. He had to come break the news to our friend’s wife and me, who were waiting at the take out. All that to say, I hear you. I really, really hear you.

    For me, what I have taken from that experience and other unfortunate fatalities on the river is to be forever reminded and mindful of the preciousness of life. I also stood by a friend whose quite young husband passed away in his sleep, with two small children and her expecting their third. Not a day goes by (and often it’s multiple times a day) that I don’t consciously recognize that I don’t know if either of us will see the other again. I don’t live as if it’s doomsday, but I live knowing that every moment is profoundly precious and treat it accordingly. I embrace every interaction we have, no matter how small, with the intention of gentleness and kindness. This is partly naturally who we are and how we love each other, but going through the experiences of the deaths of friends’ spouses crystallized it even more.

    We also have made sure that we have all of our estate documents in order – wills, powers of attorney, and especially living wills. We have had conversations about what we would each want in terms of end-of-life decisions, so that the other wouldn’t be left dealing with the angst of having to make a decision not knowing what the other would want in a given situation.

    I was guiding a kayak trip once and had a guest tell me a quote that has always stuck with me: “The past is done and behind you, the future you thought you would have never really existed, and all we really have is the present.” I suppose what I try for is to use the present we have to squeeze in every bit of love and caring I can into each moment. And hold each other close. And be grateful and thankful for every bit of it we get.

  • Elizabeth

    My best friend’s husband died suddenly a few months ago, so this is a question that’s been on my mind a lot lately. None of us knows how much time we have. All any of us can promise our spouse is to live the best life possible with him or her. Cherish this moment.
    Ultimately, though, all marriages end. It is an eventuality that we all must face – either I will lose my spouse, or he will lose me. You have to know that if you’re the unlucky one who is left behind, you will be OK. Your friends will be there for you to get you through the worst of it. As for the practicalities, get life insurance. Get a will. Make sure you think about these things now, because I can tell you from personal experience, it really, really sucks having to deal with it after the fact.

  • Whitney Kerr

    Oh I feel this deeply. I feel this because my intended’s passion is supersport motorcycles. He rides on public roads, not tracks. And though he’s “sensible” when other people are around, nothing is going to stop him from being torn apart if he comes off his bike at 200km/hr. I’ve been half threatening him for most of our relationship that if he kills himself on a motorcycle then “I will resurrect you, and murder you myself”.
    I do my best to recognize, when I worry, that he will die some day. Preferably not any time soon, but if he was to die, on his bike would be going in a way most suitable to him. And, yeah, this is going to sound crass, but we have a really good insurance policy on him. So at least if the worst does happen, there won’t be a financial crisis on top of losing the man I love.