Barack Obama Reveals Three Questions to Ask Before Selecting a Mate
Barack and Michelle Obama have been married for 25 years. That is not a long time when compared to other couples who have been married much longer. On the other hand, it is a long time compared to some of the shorter marriages we have heard about. Being married for a quarter of a century is long enough to determine what works and what doesn't work in a marriage.
While the 44th President of the United States is not a marriage counselor, many of his workers looked at his and Michelle's marriage as one to be admired.
Marriage of Barack and Michelle Obama
Most people don't know that Michelle was not Barack's first choice to be his wife. Before meeting Michelle, Barack lived with anthropologist Sheila Miyoshi Jager while he was a community organizer in Chicago in the 1980s.
He wanted to marry her. In fact, he proposed to her twice. Jagger turned him down twice. Her parents were against their relationship.
Obama met Michelle Robinson in June 1989 when he was employed as a summer associate at the Chicago law firm of Sidley Austin LLP where Michelle worked. She was his adviser during his first three months at the company. She refused to date him, but she did join him at several group social functions. At the time she was 25, and he was 28.
Two years after meeting, Barack won Michelle over and they began dating. Their courtship wasn't long because they became engaged in 1991, the same year they began dating. They also had a short engagement because they got married the next year on October 3, 1992.
Obama's Conversations with Dan Pfeiffer
Dan Pfeiffer was Obama's traveling secretary during his campaign and later he was the White House director of communications from 2009 to 2013 and senior adviser until 2015.
The 42-year-old looked up to his boss and had many conversations with him. Their talk was not always about politics. Pfeiffer was about to get married for the second time; therefore, the commander-in-chief gave him some marital advice.
Pfeiffer writes about those conversations in his new book, Yes We (Still) Can that was released on June 18, 2018. The title is based on Obama's campaign slogan.
Former President Barack Obama gave three questions Pfeiffer and everybody else should ask before selecting a mate.
The first question:
"Is your mate someone you find interesting?
According to Obama, you will spend more time with this person than anyone else for the rest of your life, and there is nothing more important than always wanting to hear what your potential mate has to say about things.
The second question:
"Does your potential mate make you laugh?
Both Barack and Michelle have agreed that it helps that the family doesn't take themselves too seriously. They confirmed that Michelle is funnier, and Barack tells more bad jokes.
The third question:
"Do you think your potential mate will be a good parent?”
Pfeiffer was able to answer "Yes" to all those questions. Obama attended Dan's wedding in 2016 when he married Howli Ledbetter, the former director of message planning in the White House. That was only one of four weddings the former president attended of couples he had met and counseled while working for him.
People on social media said Obama gave sound advice that was better than what some marriage counselors provide.
Pfeiffer valued Obama's advice because he had been married before, but the marriage ended in a divorce. On July 16, 2006, he married Sarah Elizabeth Feinberg, a senior advisor and spokeswoman for Mayor of Chicago, Rahm Emanuel. The couple divorced in 2011.
Obamas' Strong Marriage
After 25 years of marriage, the Obamas have been open about their strong bond and solid relationship.
Last May, Michelle shared a throwback photo from their October 1992 wedding. She confirmed the pair are still having fun. She wrote. “I can’t imagine going on this wild ride with anybody else.
Earlier she told a magazine that their marriage has been "a true partnership, and you have to really, really like and respect the person you're married to because it is a hard road."