This couple gets it. They just do. Donnell and Deidre are focused on their friendship, their faith, and working to maintain a fulfilling marriage. What struck me about this couple was a Facebook status posted by Deidre the other day: "My hubby: leads us in prayer every morning, leads our family devotion, and discussion around the dinner table at night...Now that's a #mancrusheveryday #mancoveringeveryday)" I said to myself YAASS!!! What a powerful example of Young Black Love.
Check out the interview below for an introduction to Donnell and Deidre. I am hoping to also feature them in a special post on how spirituality can be a saving grace in relationships.
Why is marriage relevant in 2015?
[Donnell]: Marriage is relevant for family structure among other things. When people love each other and want to start a family, marriage is the avenue for us to do that and have the chance to be successful.
[Deidre]: Yeah, relationships are the foundational elements of our communities and society. So when it comes to having models of commitment and examples of unconditional service and love, that's where Christ-centered marriages come in.
What was your biggest hurdle before getting married compared to after?
We put in a lot of work before. We were intentional about preparing for a marriage and not just a wedding. So while it was fun dating, we were also taking premarital classes, going through pages and pages of premarital questions, and resisting our flesh! (Read: maintaining physical purity until marriage). Our challenges since getting married are just different. We're combining lifestyles, we've started a business, determining when to start a family. I don't even think they can be compared. We are more unified in how we approach things that come up though.
What is the biggest misconception out there about love and commitment in the media?
[Donnell]: The media makes love and commitment seem like it's almost impossible to be in a lifelong committed relationship.
[Deidre]: The media doesn't show positive, realistic examples of love and commitment as much as they show negative examples. It's all about the passion and the drama - relationships are all crash and burn in the media. They also don't show people dealing with conflict in healthy ways - I guess that wouldn't be good for ratings but it would be good for expectations of marriage. We just saw War Room though - and loved how it showed that it wasn't all perfect but how you have to choose whether you want to be right (self-righteous) or be in relationship. Sometimes you have to choose.
What sacrifices have you made for each other?
[Donnell]: The biggest sacrifices we make for each other involve time. Having to be willing to compromise to do things that the other person likes and accommodate each other's schedules.
[Deidre]: Ego. Ego and selfishness go out the door the minute you say "I do."
How do you make it work?
[Donnell]: We're intentional about making it work. You think about how would you feel if you were in the other person's shoes.
[Deidre]: We are best friends. I like spending time with him and we're on the same team. So I'd rather get back to enjoying spending time with my husband instead of holding a grudge or being angry. Sometimes you have to ask yourself, in the grand scheme of things, does this matter? And 9 times out of 10 the answer is no. So you either figure it out or let it go. You learn the real definitions of unconditional love and you learn how to forgive quickly.
What impact will you and your spouse make in the world?
[Donnell]: We will spread the love of God and be an example of his love for the Church.
[Deidre]: We want to show the world that marriage is definitely worth it!
Until next time...