Book Title: For better, not worse
Penname: Owatar 
Author Biography 
Owatar (whose real name is Sach Krishnan) was born in Singapore in 1951 to Indian parents. His passion for seeking wisdom began during his meditation and listening to his inner voice. He named that inner voice  Owatar. He presently lives in Singapore  
COPYRIGHT © 2021 Sach Krishnan
ISBN APP2107022
National Library Board of Singapore
All rights reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced by any means, including photocopying, recording and taping without the author’s permission.
The heart is on the left, but it is always right
      Love alone cannot sustain a relationship over time as you need to be compatible.  At the outset of a relationship, the passion of love is so intense that you long to be with each other, and it culminates in cohabiting or marriage. Only after living together with your loved one, you start to notice faults in each other and finally realise that you are incompatible. This narrative expresses my thoughts and experiences, and I know several ways to find our compatible life partner.
      Astrology, either Western or Vedic, and even the Chinese Zodiac system and Soulmates are just guides to determine your compatibility in marriage. I have expounded another theory on why couples have frequent quarrels as the fault is not necessarily their stars but themselves. This realisation of themselves could perhaps hold the key to solving their marital problems and preventing divorces.
   Your soulmate is your ideal life partner who has rarely given due consideration.  Do soulmates exist? Am I sure they do and have written a chapter on soulmates to help you find your soulmate? 
    My sincere wish to all the singles and married couples is that this narrative helps you lead a joyful and meaningful married life for the better and not worse.
God Bless All
The Owatar

Chapter 1   The marriage vow……………………………………..5
Chapter 2    The Right partner……………………………………..9
Chapter 3   Soul Mates……………………………………………24
Chapter 4  Know Thyself…………………………………………35
Chapter 5   Moving on…………………………………………….41
Chapter 6  Case Studies…..……………………………………….51
Chapter One
The marriage vow     
      The sanctity of marriage is slowly eroding. “For better or worse, till death do us part” was probably never understood nor heeded when the marriage vows were solemnly read. We probably take it for granted that our marriage will be for the better and not end in divorce.
When a marriage breaks down, it is always the other party’s fault.  In the majority of cases, usually, the men shoulder the blame. But does it matter! The ending is always miserable for everyone and, more so, for the children. Nobody wins in a divorce, as many don’t live happily ever after. Usually, the wife gets custody of the children, and the plight of the children living without a father at home is never considered.
Divorce cases may drag on for years, especially when many assets or monies are involved, and both parties’ keenly contested. Lawyers representing the plaintiff or defendant are more concerned with their fees than the outcomes of the actual trial proceedings, notwithstanding the emotional setback the children undergo.
The Judge finally declares the marriage has irretrievably broken down and annuls the marriage. Just like that, and a family ruined.  The Judge issues a decree nisi to be made absolute in three months and decides on the division of the marital assets, custody of the children, alimony, and maintenance costs. Blame your karma if you made the wrong choice of a marriage partner. But the ones who suffer are your children, as the scars embedded in their innocent hearts may never heal. 
We cannot foresee why a relationship between a couple deteriorate after they get married? Why does the bliss that existed before the marriage takes a nosedive for the worse? But it happens and is still happening. Over the world, divorce rates are climbing as couples refuse to kiss and make up but file for divorce instead. Physical or mental abuse, infidelity, alcohol/drug abuse, incompatibility are common grounds for divorce.
Presently, more young adults choose not to marry but rather cohabitate and choose not to have any children. They probably have seen what has happened to their married friends or even their parents and decide to remain single or live together without getting married.  This negative attitude in marriage must be overcome. Perhaps, we need to take a deeper look to understand what it takes for a marriage to work.
The four C’s in marriage
Those that are married will understand this narrative. Many of us were never prepared for married life, if I may add. We got married because we love someone. Little did we realise that as time goes by and the children arrive, our responsibilities increase. Work pressure, financial burdens and health take a toll on our well-being, and we become miserable. We sometimes blame our partners and regret getting married. 
Our education system or parents do not prepare us to face life after college. Instead, the emphasis is on academic qualifications. Even after getting a job and being financially independent, we are emotionally unstable and unprepared for marriage. What is the point of studying to be a lawyer, doctor or engineer if we cannot sustain a marriage? 
The present generation prefers to cohabit, having noticed their married friends or parents leading a miserable life and opted not to marry. If we do not overcome this negativity in marriage, the day will come when we pick our sons and daughters from the bottom of a long glass tube.
The 4Cs are the pillars that support a happy marriage: compatibility, compromise, communication, and commitment.
We must be compatible with our partners before committing to getting married. A commitment to make the marriage work is of prime importance, as couples must endeavour to reconcile their differences, which requires compromise. Compromise can only come about if we communicate well with our partners. When communication breaks down, it results in a stalemate in the relationship. 
Each of the four Cs is unique in a relationship, and blessed are those that recognise them before signing the marriage certificate? They are all intertwined and need to gel in a relationship. Being compatible but not learning to compromise leads to quarrels as everyone interprets issues differently. Our intentions are sometimes misread and result in miscommunication, as some are straightforward whilst others expect you to read between the lines. 
We surmount most of life’s iniquities if we stop to think before we speak. Sharing our innermost feelings to our partner without fear of reprisals is the cornerstone for harmony. Listening to each other is being mindful and must not be construed as a weakness. 
Therefore, keep these four Cs in mind when you court your future partner and iron out your differences before committing to a lifelong relationship. Say no if you have to. Bear the pain, and you are free to look for someone else; you can be happy. You have only one life to live; make it right. However, if you are already married and having problems, go through the four C’s, see where you come short, and address them accordingly. Attempt to save the marriage. 
Chapter Two
The Right Partner
      Love finds you; if you are worthy, I read somewhere. The chemistry that exists between a loving couple cannot be fathomed or explained by renowned scientists. It just happens. Marriage is a life-long commitment to serve your wife and children and is a legally and socially sanctioned union between a man and a woman. However, as mentioned before, love alone cannot sustain a marriage or relationship if they are incompatible. Can we determine whether we are compatible with our partner before marriage? A big YES!  
      Our forefathers went to great lengths to study the stars in Astrology and made the information available to us. You only have to Google into any Astrology website to get your horoscope for the day, month, and even year to foretell your fortune, health, love, and job prospects. Somehow, some are reluctant to believe in this mumbo-jumbo and rather live it to their fate. 
     Astrology is still one of those irresistible readings sought by many to check their fortune and the future. There is no scientific evidence to support its validity. This chapter is about compatibility between different zodiac signs for marriage and relationships. I will not debate its credibility but leave it to each individual to decide whether the stars can help their quest and find a compatible life partner.
    Astrology consists of several beliefs,  including a connection between the stars’ and planets’ movements that affect human lives, events and behaviour.  Western and Vedic astrology has been around for centuries. No matter what astrology one follows, there will always be scepticism. It is not one size that fits all and thus a general guideline only and depends on one’s faith and trust.
Western Astrology and Vedic Astrology differ in their Zodiac system as  Western Astrology uses the tropical system and Vedic Astrology uses the sidereal system of astrology. In astrology, they are two different ecliptic coordinates used to divide the ecliptic into twelve zodiac signs. Each sign is 30 degrees apart, making a total of 360 degrees.
    The tropical system defines O degrees at Aries’s zodiac sign to coincide with the vernal point or March equinox in the Northern Hemisphere. The sidereal system of astrology is defined as the zodiac signs relative to the apparent backward movement of fixed stars. It moves 1 degree every 72 years from the perspective of the Earth.
In Western astrology, the sun’s position at birth in one of the zodiac signs is your birth star. For Vedic Astrology, it is the Moons placement in the zodiac sign at the time, date, year and place of your birth star referred to as your Rasi. Western Astrology is used mainly by the Westerners, and the Indians use Vedic Astrology. It must be noted that both astrology systems do not restrict nationality, race, ethnicity or religion when it comes to reading your stars, as we are all born under the same sky.
     What are faith and trust? Not many may know the difference, and here is a story that may enlighten the reader. A man was walking on a tight rope 300 ft above the ground hung between two buildings. At first, he walked alone, and he got to the other side safely. He then told the crowd that he would put his son on his shoulder and walk the tight rope. Everybody had faith in him and said he could do it. He walked across the tight rope with his son and reached safely across. Then he asked the crowd if anyone would trust him with their child, and he will do likewise and walk across the tight rope and ask for volunteers from the public below. Not a single person gave their child as they did not trust him when their child was concerned. That is the difference between faith and trust. You can have faith, but if you do not have trust, it is pointless. You need faith and trust in Astrology to help you understand who will be your ideal life partner.
Western Astrology
     Western Astrology uses the Tropical astronomical system to define a year. The tropical Zodiac is also called the moving zodiac system that divides the ecliptical coordinates into twelve Zodiac houses. The earth revolves around the Sun in a year and passes through the twelve  Zodiac Signs beginning with Aries, Taurus, Gemini…and ends in Pisces. The date of your birth will denote to which Zodiac sign you belong in the horoscope. The twelve Zodiac signs in Western Astrology represent twelve basic personality types or characteristics divided into four elements: fire, earth, water, and air. Fire and air signs are masculine, while earth and water signs are considered feminine.
      Compatibility based on the Zodiac signs is an indication of whether you can click or clash with someone. Furthermore, the elements such as water, fire, earth, and air represent how we express ourselves and act on things. We are compatible with signs that share the same elements in most cases. We also tend to be compatible with people who share the same duality as our sign in astrology, even though they are of a different element. The star of the same duality tends to direct energies similarly.
Your birth date will denote which Zodiac sign and element you belong to:
Aries- March 21 to April 19, Fire Sign.
Taurus- April 20 to May 20, Earth sign
Gemini- May 21 to June 21, Wood sign
Cancer- June 22 to July 22, Water Sign
Leo- July 23 to August 22, Fire Sign
Virgo- August 23 to September 22, Earth sign
Libra- September 23 to October 23, Wood sign
Scorpio- October 24 to November 22, a Water sign
Sagittarius- November 23 to December 21, Fire sign
Capricorn- December 22 to January 19, Earth Sign
Aquarius- January 20 to February 18, Wood Sign
Pisces- February 19 to March 29, a Water sign
In summary:
Fire element signs are Aries, Leo and Sagittarius
Earth element signs are Taurus, Virgo and Capricorn
Wood element signs are Gemini, Libra and Aquarius
Water element signs are Cancer, Scorpio and Pisces
In Western Astrology, the zodiac signs are divided into three categories as each sign has its peculiar qualities. They are cardinal, fixed and mutable. Along with the four elements of Fire, Earth, Wood and Water, they affect the vibes of each sign. The four fixed signs are Taurus(Earth), Leo(Fire), Scorpio(Water), and Aquarius(Air). The mutable signs are Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius and Pisces, and the cardinal signs are Aries, Cancer, Libra and Capricorn.
      Fixed signs fall in the middle of a season; for instance, Taurus falls in spring, Leo in Summer, Scorpio in Autumn and Aquarius in Winter. They are stable signs in the zodiac, and as such, they can be relied upon and the ones who will be there for you. They are loyal but stubborn minded, and it is hard to change their minds once it is fixated.
      The four cardinal signs are Aries, Cancer, Libra and Capricorn, acting as initiators of the zodiac and constantly changing and creative. They take action, and their drive is immense even though they can be affectionate and tender. Only Libra in this group or the zodiac system is not portrayed as an animal but by an object(the scales). The scales must always tip in their favour as understanding others’ feelings can be complicated, although they are loyal and crave love with a capital L. Cardinal signs do not like to be slighted.
       Mutable signs (Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius and Pisces) are adaptable creatures and thrive on changes and are restless.  They are diplomatic, although they can be unreliable, inconsistent and uncommitted. They are the chameleon in the zodiac and change with the surroundings and see life from all perspectives
     I will not dig deeper into Astrology, as what is relevant in this narrative is the compatibility between Zodiac signs that can match a couple seeking to get married. Hence the following are guidelines to help you find your ideal partner. 
The most compatible Zodiac signs for marriage are:
Taurus and Cancer       
Leo and Aries 
Libra and Gemini
Virgo and Capricorn
Pisces and Scorpio 
Sagittarius and Aquarius
The least compatible Zodiac signs:
Aries and Pisces 
Cancer and Aquarius 
Taurus and Leo
Sagittarius and Virgo
Scorpio and Libra.
Capricorn and Gemini
   The above guideline is for couples who choose to follow their Zodiac sign in Western Astrology for compatibility or incompatibility and reveals your personality, which you may not realise yourself. Western Astrology does not consider your moon sign nor the effects of the sun and the major planets in determining your actual destiny as in Vedic Astrology. Compatability based on the Sun’s sign between two people indicates an elemental affinity and does help in some way to find your ideal life partner.  
Vedic Astrology 
     Vedic Astrology or Jyotisha in Sanskrit is Hindu Astrology or Indian Astrology widely practised in the Indian sub-continent. The term Jyotisha means light, coming from the Sun or Moon and other planetary bodies. Its origin dates back 4000 years ago when the Rishis or sages recorded the Moon, Sun, major planets and the Star Constellations in the twelve Zodiac signs. The sidereal Zodiac system is used in Vedic Astrology, and Rishis compiled an Almanac depicting their cyclic orbits around the Sun. Using this Almanac, a Vedic astrologer checks your date, time, year and place of birth and creates a Natal or Birth Chart that maps out your destiny from the moment of conception.
      The twelve Zodiac signs in Vedic Astrology are the same as in Western Astrology. Still, in Vedic astrology, each zodiac sign is ruled by a significant planet, influencing your psyche and destiny.  A Vedic Astrologer reads your character from this Natal Chart, important events, finances, health, and your love life. A couple’s chart is read conjunctively for matchmaking to see if they are matched for marriage and check their compatibility. Indians believe in matchmaking a couple before marriage as they believe that if you are a matched pair, you will learn to love each other as husband and wife as time goes by. This is difficult to comprehend by Western standards, but Indians place their trust in the Vedic System.
Four main factors in your Natal Chart will determine your destiny. They are:   
Rasi or Birth Star
The Moon’s placement in one of the twelve zodiac houses at your time, date, year and place of birth is your Rasi or birth sign. You would be an Aries if the Moon were housed in Aries at the time of delivery, even though your birth date was in November, and that is the significant difference between Western and Vedic Astrology. The orbiting Moon stays in each zodiac sign for two and a half days before moving to the following zodiac house clockwise. The Moon denotes your feelings, subconscious, instincts, habits, emotions and intellectual mind.
Lagna or Ascendant star
Where the Sun transits in the zodiac sign at the time of birth is your Ascendant or Lagna. It is the first moment of contact between your soul and its new life on earth. Each zodiac sign is placed in a house, starting with Aries as number one and counting clockwise, Taurus is house number 2 and so forth till Pisces, house number twelve. The Sun is placed in each zodiac house every two hours in a 24 hours cycle. It depicts your personality, character and predicts your auspicious or inauspicious times for significant events like a marriage or starting a job.
The Star Constellation or Nakshatra
When the moon transits through a Star Constellation at the time of birth is called Janma Nakshatra or Birth Nakshatra. There are 27-star constellations that the Moon passes through as it plies across the sky. Each Nakshatra is 13 degrees and 20 minutes apart in the Zodiac of 360degrees; there are 27 Nakshatras. Each Nakshatra is ruled by a Hindu Deity and reveals our primary attributes, motivation, sensual desires, material desires, and Dharma. Hinduism is based on our spiritual principles, morality, generosity, compassion. Its antonym is Adharma which is betrayal, evil doing, immorality, unrighteousness, wickedness and vice. This constitutes our Karma: the beneficial effects from our practical actions and the harmful effects from our past harmful actions. Indians believe in the incarnation, and our past lives karma is embedded in our soul DNA and is carried forward into the present. Thus, your soul has journeyed through many lives. According to Hinduism, there is no escaping from all your past Karma, as you reap what you sow. However, doing Dharma or good deeds in your present life will lessen the bad karma and enlighten your soul, which is the ultimate goal of reaching Nirvana or Paradise.
Planetary Positions
     In Vedic astrology, the major planets, Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Mercury, Venus, Sun and Moon (is considered a planet in Vedic Astrology) placement in your Natal Chart at birth further influences your destiny. Each planet affects the Zodiac sign differently and can be favourable, unfavourable or neutral. I will not delve deeper into this aspect as I am not an astrologer. But anyone can look it up on a website for more information. Vedic astrologers thrive on this business of doing your reading. Please be warned. Look for sites that teach you about Vedic Astrology and learn how to read your stars.
     In addition, there are two shadow planets as per Indian mythology called Rahu and Ketu, representing the head and tail of the serpent. The serpent tricked Vishnu, the God of Preservation and Protector of the Universe as per Hindu religion, into giving it an immortal elixir. When Vishnu knew of this trickery, Vishnu beheaded the serpent. The serpent had already consumed the potion and obtained immortality. It is represented by its head(Rahu) and tail(Ketu). They are situated at the intersection of the Earth and Moons orbit and are not a solid form. They are directly opposite each other, 180 degrees apart, Rahu is the north node, and Ketu is the south node. Rahu signifies your earthly desires, and Ketu represents your soul desires and leans more to your spiritual journey in this life. Their movement is anticlockwise in your natal chart.
Mahadasa Period or Planetary Period
     Mahadasha period is a particular period of a person’s lifespan and is ruled by a planet. They can vary from 6 to 20 years and 120 years in one’s lifespan. This is referred to by Vedic Astrologers as the Vimshottari Dasha period and influences us differently at different times in our lives. The Saturn period is 19 years, Jupiter period is 16 years, Venus period is 20 years, Rahu period is 18 years, Ketu Period is seven years, Mercury period is 17 years. Mars period is seven years, Moon period is ten years, and Sun Period is six years. Each period is defined in Vedic Astrology and has its peculiarities affecting your life during that period.
       The above factors are all read conjunctively by an astute Vedic Astrologer to determine the couple’s compatibility and future. Indians strongly believe in Vedic Astrology rather than the magic of love to wed a couple. Thus a couple may be madly in love and plan to marry, but if their astrological stars do not match, they will be told their marriage will have ill effects. But then again, it is up to the couple to listen and abide. If the marriage fails, the old saying ‘I told you so’ will indeed be uttered by their parents.
    Thus, the couple’s Rasi, Lagna, Nakshatra, and Dasha periods must match before a wedding can take place. Even the in-law’s Astrology is taken into account as the Indians believe they marry into a family.
Vedic signs Compatability
Vedic Astrology took a deeper look at your stars, and appended below is a guideline:
Aries ~~ Leo and Sagittarius
Taurus ~~ Virgo, Capricorn, Cancer and Pisces
Gemini ~~Libra, Aquarius, Leo and Aries
Cancer ~~ Scorpio and Pisces
Leo ~~ Aries, Gemini, Libra and Sagittarius
Virgo ~~ Taurus and Capricorn
Libra ~~ Gemini, Leo, Sagittarius and Pisces
Scorpio ~~ Cancer, Virgo, Capricorn and Pisces
Sagittarius ~~ Aries, Leo, Libra and Aquarius
Capricorn ~~ Taurus, Virgo, Scorpio and Pisces
Aquarius ~~ Taurus, Gemini and Libra
Pisces~~Taurus, Cancer, Scorpio and Capricorn
Your Lagna or Ascendant sign depicts your personality.
Aries ~~ Impetuous, and strong-willed and ruled by Mars
Taurus ~~ Stable and sensuous and ruled by Venus
Gemini ~~Verbal and high-strung and ruled by Mercury
Cancer ~~ Emotional and responsive and ruled by Moon
Leo ~~ Confident and exuberant and ruled by Sun
Virgo ~~ Methodical and discerning ruled by Mercury
Libra ~~ Charming and appealing ruled by Venus
Scorpio ~~ Controlled and reserved ruled by Mars
Sagittarius ~~ Cosmopolitan and irrepressible ruled by Jupiter
Capricorn ~~ Respectable and proud ruled by Saturn
Aquarius ~~ Friendly and individualistic ruled by Saturn
Pisces ~~  Idealistic and receptive, ruled by Jupiter
      Although you can obtain an Astrology reading on numerous websites (for a nominal fee), giving them your birth time, date, year, and country, they only provide preliminary results. It is generically computerised and follows a set of algorithms. It needs a truly well versed Vedic Astrologer to get a proper interpretation of your Natal Chart and is not accessible as a fee is generally imposed.
     Vedic Astrology is a science by itself.  I must emphasise that this chapter does not intend to tell which is better, the Western or Vedic Astrology, as the intention here is to give the tools available to make a happy and successful marriage.
Chinese Zodiac
The Chinese Zodiac system is based on the Chinese lunar calendar year and assigns an animal each year in a repeating twelve-year cycle. Each animal sign has different characteristics and personalities, and it correlates to a person born in that sign. The Chinese use this system when it comes to marriage and love and give guidance on their compatibility. It does not apply to couples only but to other relationships, such as siblings, parents, friends, and even co-workers.
The Chinese Lunar New Year Chart
Rat ~~ 1948 1960 1972 1984 1996 2008 2020
Ox ~~ 1949 1961 1973 1985 1997 2009 2021
Tiger ~~ 1950 1962 1974 1986 1998 2010 2022
Rabbit ~~ 1951 1963 1975 1987 1999 2011 2023
Dragon ~~ 1952 1964 1976 1988 2000 2012 2024
Snake ~~ 1953 1965 1977 1989 2001 2013 2025
Horse ~~ 1954 1966 1978 1990 2002 2014 2026
Sheep ~~ 1955 1967 1979 1991 2003 2015 2027
Monkey ~~ 1956 1968 1980 1992 2004 2016 2028
Rooster ~~ 1957 1969 1981 1993 2005 2017 2029
Dog ~~ 1958 1970 1982 1994 2006 2018 2030
Pig ~~ 1959 1971 1983 1995 2007 2019 2031. 
Compatible Animal Signs
1 Rat ~~ Dragon, Rabbit and Ox
2 Ox ~~ Snake, Rooster and Rat 
3 Tiger ~~ Horse, Dragon and Pig
4 Rabbit ~~ Sheep, Pig, Monkey and Dog
5 Dragon ~~ Rat, Monkey and Rooster
6 Snake ~~  Dragon and Rooster
7 Horse ~~ Tiger, Rabbit and Sheep
8 Goat ~~ Rabbit and Pig
9 Monkey ~~ Ox and Rabbit
10 Rooster ~~ Ox and Snake
11 Dog ~~  Rabbit
12 Pig ~~ Rabbit, Goat, and Tiger 
Incompatible Animal Signs
1 Rat ~~  Horse and Rooster
2 Ox ~~ Tiger, Horse, Goat and Dragon
3 Tiger ~~ Monkey, Ox, Tiger and  Snake
4 Rabbit ~~ Snake and Rooster 
5 Dragon ~~ Dog, Goat and Ox
6 Snake ~~ Goat, Rabbit, Tiger, Snake and Pig
7 Horse ~~  Rat, Ox, Horse and Rooster
8 Goat ~~ Ox, Dragon, Snake and Dog
9 Monkey ~~ Tiger and Pig
  10 Rooster ~~ Rabbit, Rat, Horse and  Rooster
  11 Dog ~~ Dragon, Goat and Rooster
  12 Pig ~~ Monkey and Snake
The Five Elements
     The five elements earth, metal(gold), water, wood, and fire are ancient Chinese philosophies used to describe interactions and relationships between things. They are believed to be the fundamental elements of everything in the Universe where interaction occurs, especially in generating or overcoming a relationship. It is used in the Chinese Zodiac system to rate the compatibility or incompatibility between the zodiac animals you belong to.
    Generating promotes development, and Overcoming enables control. Thus causing interactions are fuelling, forming, containing, carrying and feeding. To simply this statement in the proper context, Wood fuels Fire, Fire creates Earth(Volcano), Earth has Metal, Metal takes to water(bucket, pipes), Water feeds Wood(Roots). It follows a twelve-year cycle similar to the animal signs and also within sixty years.
    Overcoming interactions of the five elements is akin to acts of hostility like two sides in a war. The five overcoming interactions are melting, penetrating, separating, absorbing and quenching. Thus, fire melts metal; metal penetrates wood( chopping, sawing), wood dissolves earth (roots), the soil absorbs water, water quenches fire.
Thus the elements related to your animal sign can tell if you are compatible.
The fixed elements are :
Wood ~ Tiger and Rabbit
Fire ~ Snake and Horse
Earth ~ Ox, Dragon, Sheep and Dog
Metal ~ Monkey and Rooster
Water ~ Pig and Rat
      It follows the order of Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal and Water. It depends on which year you are born, and it will reflect which element you belong to. Thus your destiny and personality can be read for compatibility. Still, most Chinese use it primarily for fortune-telling and check if luck favours a couple in marriage as if there is no luck, the marriage is doomed.
    The characteristics of people according to the five elements are;
Wood – Exceptionally gifted, Idealists, Planner
Water- Sympathetic, Perfectionist, Coordinator
Earth-  Kindness, Tolerant, Honest, Leader
Fire- Courageous, Passionate, Good Researcher, King
Metal- Determined, Persistent, Workaholic, Manager
    The five elements combined with the twelve animal signs produce a sixty-year cycle. E.g. A Earth Rat in 1948 will be followed after twelve years as Metal Rat, and the process follows for sixty years consecutively as Earth, Metal, Wood, Fire and Water.
This system has its own merits and followed mainly by the Chinese for centuries. Nevertheless, it will be good to self-check and ascertain your compatibility with your kin, friend or loved one and determine its validity, as you alone will be the best judge.
In summary, Westerners have their Astrology, the Indians have their Vedic Astrology, and the Chinese have their own Zodiac System. They do not consider race, ethnicity or religion and can be used by any individual.
Chapter Three
Soul Mates.
     Hardly has this subject been broached upon, where relationship or marriage is concerned, as it may sound alien to many people. Perhaps the word ‘soul’ gives a tingling feeling as no one has ever seen their soul, and it remains a mystery to all of us. Thus, the mention of the soul does not augur well with them.
     My personal view of the soul lies in your feelings or inner voice that speak to you and guide you. Often than not, we choose not to heed our feelings or inner voice and let our minds do the job, especially when it comes to decision making? It’s up to an individual to trust their feelings.
     How many of us know what a soul mate is? Do couples look for their soul mate before marriage? I doubt! It’s not easy looking for a soul mate. With the help of astrology, we can have a fair idea of who will be a good soulmate match for us. 
What is a soul mate?
A soul mate is someone you get along with instinctively without having to put on a show. You strike a powerful bond with them naturally, whether it is the same or opposite sex. Somehow both of you can click, and you both feel comfortable, just by being with each other. He is your hero and makes you feel complete. You will forgive each other and not point your finger if there are any disputes or misunderstandings between both of you. You want to make each other happy. You respect each other’s differences regardless of culture, religion or even the colour of the skin. Somehow you will know what the other party is thinking.
It can be love for one another, platonic relationship, sexual activity, spirituality and compatibility. You will know it instinctively when you meet your soulmate. Perhaps, you are fated to be together or call it karma. Blessed are the one’s that have found their soulmates. 
Again we will delve into the Western Zodiac to find your suitable soul mate.
Potential soulmates of Zodiac signs are:
Aries ~~Leo, Sagittarius and Libra
Taurus ~~ Capricorn, Scorpio and Pisces
Gemini ~~ Libra, Aries and Aquarius
Cancer ~~ Scorpio, Taurus and Capricorn
Leo ~~ Libra, Sagittarius and Aries
Virgo ~~ Pisces, Capricorn, and Taurus
Libra ~~ Gemini, Aquarius, Sagittarius
Scorpio ~~Taurus, Capricorn and Cancer
Sagittarius ~~ Leo, Aries and Libra.
Capricorn ~~Taurus, Virgo and Cancer
Aquarius ~~ Libra, Aries, Gemini and Sagittarius
Pisces- Cancer, Scorpio, Capricorn and Taurus
As an Aries, you are driven by your passion, and when you make up your mind, you are unstoppable. You lean towards a partner that allows you to keep your sense of independence within a relationship.
Thus the fire signs of Leo and Sagittarius make perfect partners for you. Libra is your opposite sign and has the potential to be your soulmate as it will help you stay balanced during stressful periods.
     Being an earth sign, Taurus individuals are practical. They need to have stability, and Capricorn, another Earth sign, will be a great match, as you both value material and emotional stability. Pisces will help you tap into the creative and spiritual aspects of your inner self and will help you balance your practical part with spirituality. On the other hand, Scorpio can make both of you have a lasting relationship, as you both can stay committed due to the fixed nature of your signs. You are likely to challenge each other, which will help you grow. 
      Libra and Aquarius belong to the Air element corresponding with Gemini and will be suitable matches. They have a sharp wit, as air signs tend to be more conversations and lead with their intellect. Libra can ground you as they are partnership-oriented, and Aquarius moves slower than you and may test your patience, but you have similar needs in a relationship to make things work for both of you.
On the other hand, Aries will sweep you off your feet as they are independent and grant your needs for independence. Aries is confident, which gives you a boost in your relationship.
Cancerians need emotional security, as they love sincerely and wholeheartedly. Thus Scorpio makes a good match as they share the same desire of being cautious in a relationship. Scorpions resist being vulnerable and will test this relationship first before giving trust. But as soulmates, they both overcome their fears and resistance and develop a deep, sacred and wonderful relationship.
Taurus can give you a sense of stability as they crave peace, and both bring the best of each other. Cancer loves to nurture, and Taurus loves being doted. As both these signs love a home, they blend well together, one loves to cook, and the other loves to eat.
Capricorn is your opposite sign, but don’t despair as opposites do attract. Being driven by goals, you both can work as a team and have a balanced partnership.
Libra will start with the romantic and passionate side that appeals to both of your nature. Fiery Leo leads with their heart, and because of their strong ego and sense of self, they exhibit confidence and love to be in the spotlight. Aries will be ideal for you as they have faith, charisma and drive to pursuit you. On the other hand, Sagittarius is also a great match as they are active and adventurous. Both of you will never be bored with each other. Your compatibility and instant connection make you ideal soulmates. Libra is charming and full of social grace, and this is the attraction that gravitates Leo to them. You both value your commitment and end up with an excellent long term relationship.
Being worry-free and not grounded is Virgo’s problem as they are too analytical. That is why Taurus is their best soulmate, as it is stable and has a balanced approach to life. Both are like magnets to each other. Capricorn being another Earth sign, will get along with Virgo as they love the critical nature of Virgo, and this gives them thorough feedback on Capricorns ambitions and desire for structure.
Pisces is your opposite, and the physical attraction binds you both in a strong relationship, which Pisces loves.
Librans are associated with partnership and connection but need a good balance of independence in a relationship. Libra is curious and enjoys learning new things or experiencing new places; Gemini fits perfectly into this puzzle. Both of you enjoy talking and sharing ideas. Aquarius is another sign that goes well with Libra. Both of you are passionate about justice and being involved in community work. This shared interest will heighten your relationships. Another soulmate that will be perfect for Librans is Sagittarius. They are positive in their outlook, which is ideal for Librans who hate when things get are out of balance.
The keen intuition of Scorpio makes them know who their soulmate is easy. They can be hundred per cent sure, who is essential in their lives. Cancer creates a perfect match for Scorpio as they are both water signs. Their needs are complementary as both need emotional support in their relationship and need to feel safe.
Another compatible soulmate is Capricon, who is stable and very grounded, and you like supporting each other to achieve each other’s respective goals. Being patient with Capricorn is the key when it comes to opening up and being vulnerable. But it will bear fruit in the end.
Taurus is your opposite sign but can be successful. When Taurus commits, they stay. Scorpio can rely on them, and oh, what a sensual relationship they both have together, especially in bed.
Aries is their perfect partner as independence loving Sagittarius, and fearless Aries is an ideal blend. They see the positiveness of Aries and will be tenacious in pursuit of a partner, and Aries fits the bill.
Leo, another fire sign, will make a fun partner for Sagittarius, who needs stability. Leo is creative, friendly and has a great sense of humour, and this relationship will never get bored when they are together—laughing all the time.
Libra needs a sense of independence in a relationship just like Sagittarius, but they both know when they need each other instinctively and make them ideal soulmates.
The prime focus in life for Capricorns is building their professional and social image. Their ambitious nature knows no bounds, just like Cancerians. They are mutually attracted to each other and support each other to seek their individual goals. Both are outgoing and form good networking. The other earth signs Virgo and Taurus, also make suitable matches as they are practical in their approach to life. As both of these signs tend to be slow and steady, Capricorns appreciate them.
This sign is highly intellectual and curious and loves good conversations. Thus air signs Libra and Gemini make great zodiac matches for Aquarius. Libra is charming, and you will have endless conversations with Gemini, who loves to chat. As air signs are usually pretty independent, Gemini and Libra partner will respect your need for space in a relationship. Sagittarius will also be a good soulmate as you are community-minded and enjoy a social life together, and because Sagittarius is confident and independent, Aquarius loves them.
Pisces are romantic and often get disappointed by others. Pisces are naturally dreamers and mystics and seek a soul connection. They need a partner who is grounded and practical. The ideal romantic partner will be Taurus as they are helpful and romantic.
Capricorn is not romantics, but their attraction is that you like to bring out their softer side. These two balance one another and have an instant spark that binds them.
Cancer is also another candidate since both are water signs, and both of you are in tune with each other’s emotions and considerate of each other’s feelings. You instinctively understand each other.
Checklist for your ideal soulmate:
·    They both understand the value of compromise, even though they come from different backgrounds, upbringings, past experiences and perceptions of the world. They learn from each other rather than argue with each other. 
·    They don’t stop doing little things to please each other.
·    Soulmates are open and honest when they talk.
·    They listen to each other.
·    Soulmates will think before they bring something trivial that
·    can trigger an argument and consider it and make sure the juice is worth the squeeze.
·    They both want to venture into new experiences together.
·    They have intimacy all the time, do all kinky things to satisfy.
·    They enjoy each other’s whims and are not afraid to express their desires.
·    They pay attention to each other’s feelings and interact constantly.
·    They support you in everything you do, opposites hobbies but still help and support each other
·    You feel secure in each other’s company
·    Communicating with your soulmate is easy as you can open up honestly with them and fully understand where you are coming from without doubting their sincerity.
·    You accept your differences readily as you could be the opposite polar in many ways but still be attracted to each other.
·    Trusting each other
·    Loyal to each other
·    Passionate to a very high degree when you have a soulmate as your boyfriend, girlfriend, wife or husband. Lovemaking is a blissful experience. 
If you have gone through this checklist and find that you have most of the above in your relationship, you have found your soulmate. Lucky you! When two people are meant for each other as a soulmate, the spark of love never dies. 
However, for those already married, and after reading this narrative, it may expose some negative traits in your married life, please do not feel alarmed or sad. It is never too late to make changes in your relationship to be happy together. You are the master of your destiny, and do not let this negativity set you back.
Chapter 5
Know Thyself
     It may take a lifetime to know and understand our partner and perhaps even longer know who we are. Our physical body determines our gender, but hidden deep inside ourselves is an emotional aspect of the opposite gender. Putting it bluntly, some men act like women, and some women act like a man is the best way to describe this phenomenon.  
     My insights into a happy or failed marriage hinges on facing the fact that we can physically exhibit womanly emotions inside us even though we are men. A man’s ego gets dented whenever his friends tease him that he wears the ‘skirt in the house.’ Similarly, a woman can exhibit manly characteristics, and she wears the ‘pants in the house.’
      Psychologists have never expounded on this theory. Nor has it been given due consideration in a relationship. Therefore, I hope this theory addresses the problem in a relationship in married couples. In addition, the different anomalies that arise based on this theory may help you better understand why you may have issues in your current marriage or relationships.
 Inside you
     We seldom take time to reflect on who we are. Our deepest thoughts are rarely, if ever, revealed to anyone. Perhaps it is human nature not to let anyone know about ourselves as we value our privacy and share our thoughts and feelings with those close to us. But if we take a deep look at ourselves, we may find that hidden inside us is another nature that we are shy or even afraid to bring into the open.   
Some men are womanly inside, albeit they are a man.
Prince Charles may fit into this category.
Some women are manly inside as they tend to assert themselves and are leaders. Examples are Indira Gandhi and Margaret Thatcher.
A full-blooded male or the Alpha-male and is strong-minded and asserts his will with conviction.
Woman/ Woman.
A natural female, she probably would be the doting wife or girlfriend and lets her man lead and follows without objecting. 
 You must introspect and get to know your true inner self or perhaps, you can ask your family members or a very close friend about yourself and accept the truth.
Sir Isaac Newton’s theory that ‘like poles repel and unlike poles attracts’ can be applied to a couple. I have seen many cases where a husband and wife are opposite, but this somehow binds them. Their likes and dislikes are attracted to each other.  
Let us walk through the various scenarios and determine if they are valid.
Scenario 1 
What happens if a man/woman marries a woman/man. The man is often called the one who wears the skirt in the house. But some men accept it, and they can get along with their wives. They do communicate and discuss their deep-rooted feeling honestly and compromise and lead a happy married life. 
Scenario 2
What if a man/man marries a woman/woman?
The perfect match and is the natural order of all relationships between a man and a woman.
Scenario 3
What if a man/man marries a woman/man.
It can spell disaster as both are strong-headed and want to assert their authority over the other—two men in the house and who will be the Alpha male.
Scenario 4 
What if a man/woman marries a woman/woman.
The chances are slim that this marriage will survive as there are two women in the house. So who will wash the dishes?
Look at your present position, ask yourself what you are really like inside yourself, and look at your wife and see what she is inside. Then, discuss your relationship honestly, with no holds barred. I am sure you can amicably arrive at a solution and build a harmonious relationship. You can apply this to your current relationship if you are not married yet. But remember, do not feel bad or guilty if you end the relationship if you reckon that it will not work in the long run. It is better to end a relationship before you get married and have children. Above all, be honest, and you will never live a life of regrets
     It stands to reason that if you are willing to accept your true self, you undeniably will come to terms with yourself. Both partners work together to make the marriage work for the better and live harmony, not only for themselves but also for the children.
Chapter Five
Moving on 
There is no perfect system to gauge compatibility? As Shakespeare wrote, ‘the fault is not in our stars but ourselves.’ therefore, the Western and Vedic Astrology, Soulmates and the Chinese Zodiac system aforementioned are guidelines only as marriage is a sacred union between a couple for life and is said to be made in heaven.    
Some of us do not support belief in Astrology or the Chinese Zodiac to find our perfect partner. This is understandable as they have strong confidence in themselves. Seldom do they consult their parents or sibling and instead make their own decision on the choice of their life partner. They prefer to live together before deciding to tie the knot, which is a pragmatic approach to a certain extent, as they are not committed and can walk out of the relationship unscathed. Some even draw up a pre-nuptial agreement. In the event of separation, the division of their marital assets, namely the property, is based on what they agreed upon. This fear arises from the complete lack of trust in the relationship. The Woman’s charter is a legislative Act that protects women’s rights, provides them protection against family violence, and imposes a stiff penalty for offences against women. Cohabiting couples, unlike married couples, do not have automatic rights to financial support on separation.
Perhaps a good understanding of what a marriage entails to make it work will probably save many a good soul from the consequences of a failed marriage.
Reasons why do people marry?
It’s good to know the many reasons why people choose to marry.
·    Did they marry because of lust?
·    Did they marry for money?
·    Did they marry because their parents forced them?
·    Did they marry because of the fear of loneliness in old age?
·    Did they marry because they genuinely love each other?
The list can be endless, but whatever the reasons they marry, there are also dozens of reasons why they divorce, as there are two sides to every marriage’s story. But most divorces happen because they married for the wrong reasons and did not commit themselves to an everlasting marriage for better, not worse.
Another one bites the dust.
There are several other reasons why marriages or relationships fail, and these are:
        Did you marry for lust? There is no denying that some men do. Sex is the only pleasure that beats all other pleasures of the flesh. Man and woman must have sex frequently. Of course, if you love each other more profound, then sex is meaningful. But if there is no love, just lust only, it only lasts till you climax and put your pants on and go home. Some men even think of other women when they have sex, which can be the same for some women. A woman takes sex more seriously, and her virginity is given to the one she loves ( I think), as some do it for money. But the basis for marriage is not altogether to fulfil your sexual needs but to have a best friend with whom you can have sex.
A woman can tolerate a drunk, drug addict or gambler, but when she finds you slept with another woman, you are doomed, even if it was a one-night stand. Similarly, it is the same for men, too, if their wives slept with another man. A man will again never forgive his wife for infidelity.
Drug/Alcohol Abuse/Gambling
Needless to say, when a man or woman is a drug addict or alcoholic, it’s doomsday for a relationship. Worse still is the gambling addiction. Addiction is a disease, difficult to cure. Despite various non-profit organisations set up by Governments or Churches to treat such individuals, the success rate is minimal. It is only a matter of time when the marriage ends on the rocks.
Career Minded
A workaholic has no time to spend at home where the heart should be—climbing up the ladder of success and falling down the marriage ladder. The higher you climb, the harder you fall. When a man or woman prioritises their career above the family, which is very common in the present rat race, the only outcome is a failed marriage. Sad that even though the man was working hard, he neglected his family.
Marital Sex.
Few will admit it, but this can be a real problem in a marriage. Both parties could be the cause, as satisfying each other’s sexual needs leads to a harmonious relationship. Sex in a marriage is joyful when both parties enjoy having sex frequently. But, denying sex for whatever reason is denying conjugal rights and should be considered an act of cruelty. Often a woman does this to punish a man for neglecting her or after a quarrel.
        There can be various reasons for a woman not yielding to a man’s sexual advancement. If a woman uses sex as a weapon and denies her man his marital rights, this will surely make a man look elsewhere to satisfy his sexual needs. On the other hand of the scale, if a man cannot meet his wife sexually, it can drive her to look for an outside source. The mood for sex works both ways and takes a certain level of understanding.  After a hard day of work or taking care of children, tiredness is why she abstains from sex and requires a piece of specific knowledge to avert a quarrel. There is an old saying that you can settle your disputes in bed by having sex with your partner, but it depends on how emotionally upset is one party.
Anger Management
There is anger in us, and managing it is crucial in a marriage or any relationship. Words uttered in anger causes more hurt than action and, at times, are never forgiven.  Anger creates a momentary lapse of reason, as you are not yourself anymore, as though some demon has got hold of you and resorted to violence. Such behaviour is not acceptable or tolerable, and we live to regret it. Therefore, couples should address this problem immediately and go for counselling to help them manage their temper tantrums. Physical abuse that stems from this anger needs to be addressed before it escalates and becomes unbearable and be grounds for divorce.
Victims of Love.
 A broken-hearted person is a victim of love. It can happen to anyone of us as love can make or break you. Some live a life of denial as it is too painful to talk about and carry the hurt like a yoke strung across their necks, with no shoulder to cry on. The feeling is like a knife thrust deep into your heart, and you feel a twinge of pain generating from your heart.
Beauty can be a beast if used to seduce a person for ulterior motives. Money, after all, is the root of evil. Many wealthy men get taken by the beauty and do not realise they are taken for a ride. Similarly, a wealthy woman gets charmed by a handsome stud and loses all her money. You can buy love, but will such love or relationship last. It is usually the rich who fall prey to these charms of beauty. After the money well dries up, it’s good-bye, Charlie. They end up being broken-hearted and become a victim of love. Unrequited love, in most cases, is hard to bear and invariably lead to a broken marriage.
Jealousy is a destructive emotion that hurts you night and day. No one can understand the hurt you are going through, and some of us are too shy to talk about it. Friends and family may just tell you to let it go. It’s not that simple to let go. If ego or pride prevents you from speaking out this jealously, it is your loss. As if you love someone deeply, jealousy will raise its ugly head at times. Bring it out in the open with your feelings, and I am sure your partner will appease you and love you more for feeling jealous as it means you harbour a genuine love for them.
Interracial Marriages
       There are no hard and fast rules regarding interracial marriages. Be happy and marry them by all means. Love has no boundaries. The only setback is being from different ethnicities; you must remain tolerant and compromise where religion, language, traditions, and food are concerned when you live together. It will strain your relationship if you go to a temple or church and your partner goes to a mosque. If you take beef or pork, you cannot marry an Indian or Muslim. The language that you think in your mind, i.e. perhaps one of the many reasons for miscommunication between a couple. Thus, in, say, a mixed marriage, if the husband feels in Mandarin, and his spouse thinks in English, there will not be able to grasp what the other person is meaning as language has many hidden meanings when spoken. Most people do not realise this factor until after they marry, and it becomes too late.
      Our forefathers knew these perils in relationships and forced their children to marry someone of the same race, faith, and language. It makes sense.  But cupid’s arrow can dart anywhere; thus, it is better to lay the cards on the table before saying ‘I do.’
I am not advocating against mixed marriages, but it does require much giving and taking, and adaptation is a must. 
Why Marry
Marriage is an institution practised in every civilisation from time immemorial. Animals mate primarily to procreate, unlike humans who breed for pleasure and not necessarily to multiply. Marriage is also the only realistic permanence in a romantic relationship. Their children, borne from wedlock fortifies their love for each other and commit their responsibility to work hard to raise children. Marriage grounds people and is suitable for their mental health and is more than a physical union between man and woman but stabilises their emotional and spiritual needs. By contrast, divorce lowers mental health like depression, loneliness and self-esteem sets into their lives. Many divorced men will never cease to love their children, and their absence profoundly affects their emotional state.
However, life is not as simple as we believe it to be. There are three roles a man plays when he gets married and have children; a husband, a father and lastly himself. He is himself when he goes to work. But when he gets home, his role is divided between being a father and a husband. Similarly, a woman role is a wife, a mother and herself. How they gel each part and live happily as a family is undoubtedly a challenge. It’s when these roles do not harmonise in a particular situation is where the trouble begins. A man cannot wear the same hat as a father and a husband simultaneously, but that is expected of him. The attention that a man or woman shower on their children is not equal to that of a husband and wife.  
There is also the notion that you only know yourself when you have children. Your children are a mirror of yourself. “The Child is the Father of Man.” to quote William Wordsworth. I interpret it as the child’s character reflecting the parents, probably due to DNA or genes. The child could exhibit his characteristic more of his father than his mother if the formers genes are predominant or vice versa. When you see your children and note that they have some similarity about yourself, some good
and some bad traits, accept it as the gospel truth about yourself. Therefore, it is a true reflection of themselves in their child. The child takes the role of the ‘father’ and teaches the adult about himself. So, if you want to know about yourself, look at your child as that is the real you. This revelation of yourself in your children must make you realise who you are, accept yourself, and change for the better if need be. The problem is that not many are willing to .accept who they are. The truth does hurt even though the truth is but one.
Another school of thought is how you interact with your child as a baby until he reaches puberty, which is the foundation that builds the nature of your child. For example, if parents are frequently shouting and quarrelling in the child’s presence, it is natural for them to grow up with anger inside them or even worse if there is violence involved. If his father was a wife-beater, chances are the child will end up being a wife beater too. The upbringing of a child moulds him from a young and tender age by the parents. If a child sees the love between his parents, he learns to show love outwardly when he grows up.
On a happier note, some marriages do work, and I can only say love is the one reason it works. Marriage borne of love between a couple is heaven-sent. To love someone and be loved in return is the greatest gift that one can have. These are the blessed people. This love propagates to their children, and happiness prevails in the family.
Chapter Six
Case Study 1
Muru, a Singapore born Indian, was an aircraft technician and married. He had two lovely children aged six and eight years old. He was the sole breadwinner worked hard to buy a Government built high rise flat to raise his family. He was 28 years old, and life treated him fairly until the day his boss reprimanded him for compromising safety measures that nearly cost the life of his fellow worker. 
That was the beginning of his downfall. He was suspended from work for two weeks without pay. In that two weeks, he used to go to the nearby coffee shop and buy two bottles of Tiger beer and drank it till the last drop. Then, he will stagger home, and his wife would prepare his dinner, and they ate together. His wife did raise concerns over his drinking habit as their savings were dwindling. Muru just shrugged her off, saying he is bitter about his work suspension and needs a drink to calm him down.
The daily two beer bottles became more as a few friends would join him and buy the beers as they felt sorry for him. Finally, he would stagger home and sometimes fall flat on the sofa without having dinner. His poor wife tolerated him but could not control him. 
Soon, he completed his suspension and went back to work. Muru was a diligent worker, and all well went at his workplace. But his drinking habit did not stop but only worsened. His wife was unhappy over his drinking and had heated arguments until one night, Muru punched his wife in the face in the heat of the quarrel, and the wife called the police. The police warned Muru about raising his hands on his wife and being in a family dispute; they did not intervene but told the wife to submit a police report. The wife did not raise the police report but kept mum, and they stayed in separate rooms, and Muru carried on his drinking habit.
As the wife was not working, she had to depend on Muru for all the household expenditures. One day Muru did not have money for the weekly marketing expenses, and when the wife asked for money, Muru flew into a rage and punched her in the nose, and she started bleeding. She ran to her sister’s house, and they brought her to the hospital for treatment; and with the doctor report, they went to the Police Station and filed a report against Muru for beating his wife.
Things got worse when the wife obtained a Police Protection Order to refrain Muru from raising his hands on her. After that, Muru was aggravated and started drinking more heavily, till one day, the wife left the house with the kids and stayed at her sister’s house.
It was not long before; Muru received a lawyers letter summoning him to attend court as the wife filed for divorce on the grounds of cruelty. The courts annulled the marriage, and Muru lost his wife, his kids and the marital home. It was not long before he lost his mind and committed suicide by jumping from the tenth storey of a block of flats nearby and ending his life.
Muru’s demise left the family penniless with no income and obtained social welfare assistance to buy the necessities to survive. Unfortunately, such a sad story is happening worldwide. Even with non-profit organisations like Alcoholic Anonymous lending a helping hand to help stem the alcoholism habit, divorce seems to be the only solution, worsening the situation. Therefore, family courts should not advocate divorce as the devil’s alternative but instead get to the root of the problem, alcoholism, and mandate counselling and cure for those afflicted. 
Case study 2
 Yong was a happy-go-lucky guy, and his Chicken Rice stall sales were thriving. The family had everything they needed and looked forward to moving to a terrace house in the suburbs. During the school holidays, Yong would take his whole family for a vacation overseas. Life has been good.
Everything was working well for Yong until he met his primary school classmate, Jimmy, a loan shark who gambled heavily on horses every weekend. He happened to visit Ah Yong’s chicken rice stall, and they renewed their long lost friendship.
Jimmy taught Yong to bet on horses as he had some insider information from a horse trainer. Initially, the bets were in the hundreds, and Yong used to bring his winnings back home and share them with his wife. The wife was happy and saved the money by opening a savings account for the children.
It was not long before greed got the better of Yong and the bets went to the thousands. Some weekends he could lose a few thousand dollars. So it was only a matter of time that Yong started borrowing money from loan sharks to feed his gambling habit.
Yong was still trying to win back what he lost, but his luck went south. In six months, he lost his car, depleted all his savings, including the one’s saved for the children. Finally, he had to mortgage his house to settle his debts from the pestering loan sharks. The wife was bitter with him and refused to talk to him.
 The wife finally left him and took the kids, and stayed with her cousin. However, Yong could not shake off the gambling bug and still gambled every weekend. Finally, he had to sell his chicken rice stall to settle his debts.
Meanwhile, Jimmy coaxed Yong to be a runner for the bookie and pay his debts slowly until one day, as he was accepting bets at the Turf Club, an undercover policeman arrested him and jailed him for six months.
The wife meanwhile filed for divorce for unreasonable behaviour, and the Judge annulled the marriage. Family, house, car and business went as he finally realised his folly due to gambling. A sad and tragic end to a once thriving and happy Yong because of a gambling habit.
Case Study 3
David was an aircraft engineer, and his salary was above average. He met a pretty flight stewardess and courted her for a year, and got married. After she got pregnant, she had to leave her job and be a housewife. They had three children and lived in a condominium, and settled down pretty well.
Then one day, David had to go overseas for an assignment and left his wife and children at home, as it was a short assignment of three months. The allowances paid for this overseas stint was handsome, and his wife did not object as the money will be handy when the children go to school. 
David lived in a hotel, and he sometimes nipped down to the bar for a few beers. One night Sally, a pretty girl, was sitting at the bar and was staring at David, who could not resist and went up to her and introduced himself. He bought her several margaritas, and the effects were beginning to tell. They were enjoying each other’s company till the last call for alcohol bell rang. As they stood up to leave the bar, Sally started to wobble, and David suggested they go to his room to sober up. ‘One for the road’, said David, and she obliged.
Sally was so stoned that she dived onto the bed when she entered his room and slept. David, meanwhile being a gentleman, slept on the sofa. It was early in the morning when Sally woke up and went to the bathroom to wash up. She came out of the bathroom and sat next to David, only dressed in a towel. David woke up and smiled at her. She bent down and kissed David on his lips. David could not resist her, and soon the heavy petting began, and not long after, they were having sex. 
They were so enraptured that they had sex several times that morning as David was off that day. Sally was a hooker, much to Davids displeasure when she told him.
David told her he was married, and she said that it was only a one-night stand. David was pleased to hear this and asked how much it cost him to have sex with her. She smiled and said it was free as he had paid for all her margaritas. They both smiled and had sex again.
They ordered room service for lunch, and Sally left before leaving her phone number with David, who slept the whole afternoon. When he woke up in the evening, he mused at the thought of his encounter with a hooker and hoped that she had no disease as they had unprotected sex. However, he shrugged at the thought and saved her phone number.
That evening David’s wife called, and they spoke for an hour, and she told him how much she missed him. David felt terrible but told her he missed her too and said good night. He wanted to call Sally but thought otherwise and slept.
His assignment was ending in three days, and he had not called Sally, but that night he messaged her, and she was so happy to hear from him that she jumped for joy when David said he would like to see her that evening. So they met at the bar, and the margaritas started flowing again. Soon they were back in bed for another long night. Sally was sad that David had to leave and said she liked him and hoped he would be back soon. They bade each other farewell.  
David was happy to be home with his wife and children, which he missed dearly. But one day, the wife asked David who was Sally. David was dumbfounded and could not speak. He later admitted that she worked in a bar at the hotel. The wife then told him the message to her was to meet up. David lied and said that he was going to the bar to meet her as she made good cocktails. The wife did not believe him and did not want to cause an argument.
But her suspicion kept her mind working, and one day when David was sleeping, she sent a message to Sally saying I will be in town tomorrow and hope to see you.
The message came back ‘oh my darling David I missed you so much. Love Sally.’
The wife never forgave David, no matter how much he pleaded that it was a one night stand. Today he stands all alone as the wife filed divorce papers for infidelity.
Another sad ending for a once-happy family due to a momentary lapse of reason as you cannot cheat your wife and get away scot-free. Sooner or later, the truth will surface.
All things that happen to you happen for a reason, whether it’s good or bad. You only have one choice, and that is to accept it as it is. Only, in hindsight, you will see things from a different perspective and learn to live with them, whatever the outcome.
There will be ups and downs in all marriages or relationships, and it boils down to whether two people can learn to accept and tolerate each other, whatever their inadequacies. You will never know your partner until after you get married or cohabitate with them. Taking me for what I am is a myth. Nobody can accept you for what you are as you are unique only to yourself. But, when people learn to tolerate and understand you for what you are, remember to thank them.
Living together must be joyful and not a pain. Honesty is always the best policy, especially in a lifelong relationship. You must ‘nip it in the bud’ and settle your differences amicably as it is too late to change each other but do sacrifice for your children’s sake.
One thing that will never change is the love you have for your children. They may be too young to understand why mum and dad have to live separately. You can never see the scars you leave on their young hearts; neither will they tell you the pain in their hearts, and you never hear their cry.  These are things that most parents fail to see when they file for divorce. It is even worse when they remarry as no child can accept a step-father or step-mother and vice-versa. Therefore please do think twice or thrice before you file the divorce papers.
If you are single and looking for the right partner, I hope you find the article helpful and honestly say ‘yes’ to marriage.
My sincere wish is that you find your perfect match and be happy, for the better and not worse.
God Bless All
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