How Joy and Kent maintain a happy and fun 39 years of marriage

Updated: Sep 2, 2020

Kent & I (Joy) met in 1972 when I joined a fellowship youth group and choir at a Methodist (now Uniting) Church in Sydney, Australia. I was about 14 years old. This group was called the Go Group and met one night a week for choir practice and every Sunday morning at Church. The group was made up of around 10 to 15 high school & university age males and females and was led by the parents of three of the boys in the group.


After Church we would then meet up for social activities at a community hall where we listened to music and played games, sometimes we would visit other similar youth groups, go on camps and travel to regional areas and sing at their Churches. Wemade incredible friendships and had romances within the group over the years. I didn’treally think much of Kent romantically to start with but he grew on me. A rather nice guy with lovely curly hair, beautiful blue eyes and dimples. We started seeing each other on dates separate from the Go Group at the end of 1975. Of course my parents didn’t approve of him and wanted me to concentrate on my schooling and final year of high school. We even broke up for a little while but Kent was very persistent and we became the best of friends so kept seeing each other anyway. We were at different schools and lived quite a distance apart. I can remember catching buses after school to go to his house and his Dad would drive me home after dinner.


I got a part time job after school and weekends as a sales assistant at a department store and then the best job of all at a record shop. Kent also had a part time job making candles. We were both still living with our parents until we could save up some money. We finished our final year at high school and I went to a technical college to do a secretarial course and Kent got a full time job at an insurance company in the printingsection where he learned all things printing. Once Kent got his driver’s license it became easier to see each other more often and with the money he had saved was able to buy his first car a Hillman Imp (very old, but cute). At the end of my secretarial course I got my first full time job as a secretary in the architects’ area of a major department store like Bloomingdales. I finally moved out of home with a girlfriend into a small flat and Kent used to come and stay overnight most of the time until we decided to move in together. That lasted about 3 years until Kent got up the courage to propose. We were married in 1981 at the Church where we met in the choir and Go Group and where Kent’s parents were married in 1947 by his grandfather who was the Methodist minister there.


We moved into a couple of different apartments for the next few years having great fun together. We travelled a couple of times to England and then we had our identical twin boys Stuart and Ross in 1986. Kent got an incredible offer to move to Canberra, in the Australian Capital Territory for his job so we moved there in 1989. I stayed home to look after the boys while Kent went to work. I went back to full time work once the boys were in high school. We have both changed jobs a couple of times and moved houses a couple more. We are both retired now, still in Canberra for the time being, thinking of moving to a warmer climate and downsizing for our retirement years of travel and relaxing.


2. How many years have you been married? We are still married and that would make it 39 years this year plus you can addapproximately 5 years to that from when we started actually dating.

3. What is the one piece of advice you would give to a newly married couple on how to make a long and happy marriage? Never argue about money. Never go to bed angry at each other. And also have a kiss good night.



Love Story written by Joy.

Note: This love story is part of on ongoing curation in a series called Love Stories that details how couples met and their advice on how to create a long and happy marriage. Want to tell your love story and be a featured Love Story on Happy Little Vows? We'd love to hear it! Check out our HLV Instructions for more details.

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