Fifteen Things I Learned as a Young Married Man

bruce polly gerencser wedding 1978

Bruce and Polly Gerencser, July 1978, with Bruce’s mom and dad

What follows are fifteen things I learned as a young married man. Polly and I married in July, 1978. We recently celebrated our forty-first wedding anniversary. What were some of the lessons you learned as a young married person? Please share your thoughts in the comment section.

  1. Love doesn’t pay the bills.
  2. If you put gas in your car, it won’t run out.
  3. The balder the tire, the more you will need to use your car jack.
  4. A spare tire is of no use if it’s flat.
  5. You will have to teach your wife to drive a stick shift, check the oil, start the car with a screwdriver, and change a flat tire.
  6. Children change everything.
  7. If you pay the light bill, you will always have electricity.
  8. Living across the street from your in-laws is not a good idea.
  9. It is not a good idea to quit your job before you have found a new one.
  10. Having sex in a car is not as much fun as the movies say it is.
  11. Driving too fast is a sure way to get speeding tickets — lots of them.
  12. If you write a check with no money in the bank, it’s going to cost you.
  13. Guinea pigs, hamsters, and gerbils die.
  14. It’s a miracle any couple stays married.
  15. Giving substantial sums of money to the church is not a good idea when you can’t pay your bills. Contrary to what preachers say, Jesus will not provide.

About Bruce Gerencser

Bruce Gerencser, 62, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 41 years. He and his wife have six grown children and twelve grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist. For more information about Bruce, please read the About page.

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  1. ObstacleChick

    It is definitely a miracle any couple stays married! Congratulations on your anniversary!

  2. Scott

    “Having sex in a car is not as much fun as the movies say it is.”

    As evil atheist parents, this is the advise were gave our son. He’s 24 at this point and has had a relationship with his current GF for over 5 years. We told him beds worked ever so much better.

  3. maryg

    congratulations on your anniversary. it really is a miracle that any couple stays married-I say this at year 30 w/my husband. we went thru giving too much to the church and we look back and regret it. it just helped the pastor continue his out of control spending and father in law to maintain control. glad more of us are recognizing the scam.

  4. Skyler

    Congratulations on 41 years! That’s great! My wife and me are celebrating our 20th year this month. We also have three daughters ages 18,15 and 5.

    To your question : ” what have I learned from marriage”. Well I have learned that my love for my wife grows and grows as the years go by. I have learned it’s an awesome thing to be a dad. And I have learned that I still have do much to learn. Lol

  5. Caroline

    My husband and I married when we were 36 but had known each other for 13 years before we married. For lots of reasons we didn’t want to marry in our 20’s although we both knew we were supposed to be together. We had a long distance relationship for a decade and then decided to think seriously about marriage. We eloped and have no regrets about not doing the traditional things. I’ve learned in marriage and in life that you have to do what you know is best for you and have faith in your decisions (especially the really big ones like marriage and children).
    I love my husband and our life together.

  6. Appalachian Agnostic

    1. You can’t pay the fifty dollar electric bill and the fifty dollar gas bill with the same fifty dollars.

    2. The grass always grows back.

    3. Food storage is an art that must be perfected.

    4. Sometimes it is best to admit your marriage was a mistake and get a divorce.

  7. GeoffT

    If you leave the freezer door slightly open the food doesn’t just slightly thaw.

  8. Skyler

    I would also like to add to my above text; another of the things I learned is how happy we all are as a family since leaving the IFB ( about a year and a half ago now).


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