Miiko and Herbert Horikawa
Photo: Courtesy of Miiko and Herbert Horikawa

Miiko and Herbert Horikawa

Ages: 67 and 70

Years married: 43

Occupations: Retired school librarian; psychologist

How did you know he was the one? I had a list of qualities in my mind. I wanted an Asian man. I wanted someone with a college education, a sense of humor, a strong character, and who was decisive and caring. I never thought I was going to find this man, but Herb qualified in all of those categories, and he was big, five feet nine inches tall. All my Japanese-American girlfriends were five feet or less. I was five feet two and felt like a horse. I wanted someone I didn't tower over.

What's made it last? In the first part of our marriage, we were like-minded in our focus on the family. Herb used to help me with the household chores so I wasn't stuck with the children all the time. He helped with the laundry; we shopped together because I didn't drive. And we'd have to take the kids because we were too poor to have a babysitter. We were together a lot and that really made the marriage work.

Advice? Supporting each other is really important. It's so easy to be disrespectful. I would sometimes be critical or snide, and he would call me on it. Now I know him well enough not to say things in ways that are going to hurt him. If it's important to me, I say it nicely.


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