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Why Be Married? To Fly Higher than the Stars

So many of the folks who have figured out the secret to fame and fortune cannot figure out how to stay married. Olivia Wilde eloped with her Italian prince at age 19, but she was divorced in 2011 after just eight years together. Elizabeth Hurley's second marriage, to Arun Nayar, also ended in 2011. It lasted only four years.

Fred Armisen and Elisabeth Moss lasted only 16 months. They were separated for eight of them. Their divorce was final in May of 2011. Kim Kardashian was ready to give up after just 72 days. Her divorce from Kris Humphries is still pending.

So is Arnold Schwarzenegger's divorce from Maria Shriver. He blew it big time but may yet get a second chance. They have been married for 25 years.

So why am I telling you this? It's because the folks who study what makes us happy say it's close relationships, not money or fame. Money makes a difference only below a household income of $75,000 a year. If the next million or two comes with a failed marriage, it's a net loss.

If you are taking stock as you begin this new year, be sure to give yourself a whole lot of credit for figuring out how to love the guy or gal you married. It's worth a fortune.

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Patty Newbold is a widow who got it right the second time...

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