In Michelle Obama's new book “The Light We Carry," she shares marriage advice she's given to her kids, and we could all use her words of wisdom.
It’s easy to look at a relationship from the outside and assume things about the couple. But rarely do we see the full picture. And that’s something Michelle Obama has touched on in her new book “The Light We Carry.” In the book, the former First Lady speaks to what love — and her 33-year marriage to former President Barack Obama — looks like from the inside. And she leaves words of wisdom for her daughters about finding a partner that’s sound advice for everyone.
“Our love is not perfect, but it's real, and we're committed to it,” Obama writes in her book, according to an excerpt published by People. “We are, in many ways, very different people. He's a night owl who enjoys solitary pursuits. I'm an early bird who loves a crowded room,” she continues.
However, despite their differences, she and Barack share something that makes it work. “Between us, there's a loving assuredness that's as simple as knowing the other person is there to stay, no matter what.” It’s that shared understanding that they have someone in their corner that Obama believes people see in their photos.
“Our marriage is a place where we can each be thoroughly, comfortably, often annoyingly ourselves,” she writes. “For us, it's a solid certainty in a world where certainty seems hard to come by.”
Michelle and Barack have two daughters together, Malia, 24, and Sasha, 21. And the former First Lady hopes they can find a partnership that allows them to feel like they’re never on their own, too.
“You don't want to settle down with someone because you're looking for a breadwinner, or a caregiver, or a parent for your kids, or a rescue from your problems,” she writes. “The goal, instead, is to find someone who will do the work with you, not for you, contributing on all fronts and in all way,” Obama continues. “When someone wants to play just one role, declaring anything like ‘I make the money, so don't expect me to change diapers,’ my advice would be to start running for the hills.”
The former President and First Lady have known each other for more than three decades, but Obama says that despite the belief that people change over the years and that’s why relationships end, that’s not her take on things.
“Partnership doesn't change who you are. Just as Barack hasn't changed much in the thirty-three years since we met, neither have I,” she writes. “The change is in what's between us, the million small adjustments, compromises, and sacrifices we've each made in order to accommodate the close presence of the other.”
The Obamas aren’t the only presidential couple to offer marriage advice following decades of partnership. Previously, President Joe Biden shared the secret to his 45-year marriage to Dr. Jill Biden, saying, “Everybody says marriage is 50/50. Well, sometimes you have to be 70/30.”
He continued, “Thank God that when I’m really down, she steps in, and when she’s really down, I’m able to step in. We’ve been really supportive of one another.”