Skip to main content

About the Marriage Advice Project

Karl Pillemer

Hello and welcome to the Marriage Advice Project! I’m Karl Pillemer, a professor of Human Development at Cornell University and the project director. Over the past seven years, I have been collecting advice from older people and making it available to young people in search of answers to life’s difficult questions. I’ve published some of these lessons in a book.

We have started a new project to find out what lessons older people have learned about love and marriage. We invite anyone age 60 or older to tell us what have learned about getting and staying married over the course of their lives. Whether you are currently married, widowed, divorced, or in a long-term committed relationship, we welcome your lessons!

This advice will be useful to younger people looking for a mate or working through the challenges of married life. We will post selected stories on our web site, and all answers will be used to inform a book on the topic.

To participate, simply write your answer (as long or short as you like) to this questions in the comment box on our main page:

Thinking back over your life, what are some of the most important lessons you feel you have learned about having a happy and successful marriage?

If you would like additional inspiration, here are some other questions to get you started:

  • What advice would you have for a young person in selecting a mate?
  • What lessons would you pass on about having a happy marriage?
  • What are typical problems that come up in marriage, and what lessons have you learned about how to solve them?

Feel free to touch on any aspect of lessons for a successful relationships – what worked or didn’t work for you.

For more information or questions, send us an email at:



The Marriage Advice Project at Cornell University is collecting the advice of people 60 and older about love and marriage.

Based on the Cornell Legacy Project, we are seeking tips from elders about how to find the right partner, how to make marriage or a committed partnership work, and how to deal with the stresses of marriage. The advice we collect will be used in a new book of elder wisdom about marriage.