Teri, a mother of three, came dangerously close to becoming a statistic. When she met David, she thought he was the perfect man. "Good job, churchgoing, fun-loving, wanted kids," she says. "What else could I ask for?"

After three months of dating, Teri says David started talking about marriage. "I wasn't really ready for that. It was too soon," she says. "But he persisted and persisted, so of course I said yes."

Teri says she had doubts before the wedding. "I thought: 'I don't know if I want to do this. I've seen his temper. My parents told me they didn't like him. He wasn't very respectful to my parents or to his own parents. And I saw this," she says. "But being the type of person I am, [I thought]: 'Well, I'll marry him and I'll fix it. I'll make him happy. He'll be a better person when he's married to me.' I fooled myself."

On her wedding day, Teri says her dad asked her to reconsider. "He turned to me and said, 'We can turn around and walk out the door,'" she says. "I thought to myself, 'It'll be fine.'"

Gavin says there's a big difference between cold feet and running for your life. "If you say: 'I don't know if I'm ready. I don't know if I want to be in a marriage,' that's a different animal from: 'I have fear. I have fear of this person,'" he says. "There's no role for fear in [marriage]."


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