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Posted at: Feb 14, 2018, 1:30 AM; last updated: Feb 14, 2018, 1:30 AM (IST)

A lifetime of love

This Valentine’s Day, here is a look at couples who have successfully seen seasons pass by and never ever spent a moment out of love

Mona

February 14th... the day of love is here! Well, while falling in love comes easy, staying in love sure is an uphill task. This Valentine’s Day, we make you meet couples who have seen many a season together and are going strong as ever. Want your love to last a lifetime? Well, the ‘seasoned’ players share the secret.

Filmy chakkar

For Tahira and Ayushmann Khurrana, love happened in a totally filmy style. Together in the physics tuition in class 12th, Tahira got invited to his house for family dinner; the rest is history. Sixteen years on, two kids later, every few days he still sends her a new song that he has come across. “We fell in love when pretty young and have evolved, adjusted, adapted to each other along with life,” shares the couple who has seen each other in braces, spectacles and more. 

This writer-director wife and actor-singer hubby share common interests, which is the strong foundation to a life together. “Post the infatuation, and marriage, it’s the companionship and friendship that keeps the two together.” They bond over music, movies and art, however, differ over their choice of books. Also, while she loves adventure sports, he does not. 

“Not being always on the same page also helps to keep the dialogue on,” believes Tahira. Fights do happen and she would rather have it every day rather than switching off to one’s partner. “Have an issue, fight it out. I am not for couples who don’t speak; probably that happens when you have given up on each other.” And, of course they have figured out a way to finish the argument too. There is this particular way Tahira rolls her eyes, which is a signal for Ayushmann to say sorry!

Her advice to millennials is, “The measure of love is not time - five years, 15 or forever, but how true it is. Don’t be under pressure to stick it through considering it’s your first love or you got to keep a face in society, be courageous to seek true love be it once, twice or five times over.” 

Sporty spirit

Nirmal and Milkha Singh had a love marriage way back in 1963. Going strong after 55 years, they have kept their love for sports, which first brought them together, alive. Mornings are for golf and evenings for bridge! That such a long relationship is hardly possible today isn’t lost on them. “I tell every girl due to be married, ‘if you want it to last, agree to everything that your man says for the first two years. Play the second fiddle and soon roles would be magically reversed; you will be in command for rest of your life together.”  In her long married life, she admits fights have been there, “Do bartan hongen te khadkange nahi,” she asks. Her mantra to sail through is, “When the man is angry, run for life.” “Be ready to adapt and a woman more so than the man,” she opines!

Educated approach

Madhu was barely 19 when she found love at the Government College of Education, Sector 20. And when she tied knot with Ashok Chitkara, she knew it was a lifelong partnership. Been together for 42 years, they have been living their dream. What’s the secret? “Both of us are ambitious and have always given space to each other to pursue individual goals.” 

Yes, being in same field and running the University doesn’t come easy and they do end up having arguments. “We give each other the time and space to be angry too.” Leading rather challenging lives, building an empire out of the scratch did bring in uncertainties and low points, “We always keep it in family. We cannot expect others to live our challenges or pain. Our kids have been very understanding and whenever low, we have shared with each other and resolve issues.”

Being together

Debina Bonnerjee and Gurmeet Choudhary have been together for many years, and married since 2011. “We never see each other as husband or wife,” she laughs. They enjoy every minute of togetherness. “We have given each other space at times. We also don’t let our ego come between us.” Like any other couple, we also fight at times but soon enough the arguments turn into laughter bouts. “All we say is ‘us’; there is no place of ‘I’ and ‘you’ between us.” That’s their secret of staying in love. Any advice? “Be together. We both cook. We both love shopping. That’s the way to go.”

Going the distance

Actor Saumya Tandon was in a relationship with her now hubby, Saurabh Devendra Singh, for about a decade before they tied the knot in 2016. Theirs has been a long-distance relationship that stuck around. “I wouldn’t want anyone to go through what I did. Staying loyal and in love becomes cumbersome, since you can’t reach out; fights last longer,” admits this actor, who always knew they were meant to be together. Now that her ‘geek’ hubby has made it to India for a life together, they still fight but they believe in pouring their hearts out to resolve issues. As for a tip to stay in love, says Saumya, “For a generation used to instant gratification, it’s important to understand that love is a long, arduous process. It’s only when you have seen each other through ups and downs that the bond truly deepens. Hang in there when times are tough.”

mona@tribunemail.com

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