Ahead of her own wedding, Ayesha Vardag, the founder and president of Vardags talked to the Mail about her tips for having a successful marriage, gleaned from a decade at the top of family law.
Ayesha explained “I am an emotional person. I find it very easy to empathise with people. I’ve had a heartbreaking divorce. I’ve known single parenthood. There’s nothing they have been through that I haven’t experienced in one form or another. It’s the drive to resolve conflict and set people back on a path to the future that gets me up in the morning.’
She went on to add “Stephen and I have been together for three-and-a-half years and at first we weren’t going to bother. ‘My three children and his two children, who all live with us and spend time with their other parent, are secure in our relationship, as were we. But then we thought, marriage does still have a certain status which I know they will find a great comfort and reassurance, and we both feel we want to make a public declaration of our love and commitment.”
Discussing her upcoming nuptials, Ayesha shared the details of the day “We wanted the ceremony and the whole day to have personal resonance. We will be coming out of the house as a family, and walking across the green to the cathedral. I won’t be wearing something by Dior or Jenny Packham, although I did think about it. But I felt there was something so lovely and harmonious about my mother, who is a talented seamstress, making my gown. I will be in a flame red silk dress, fitted on the bodice and pooling down to a gigantic train.”
Reflecting on the divorces she had witnessed, she explained that women retreating into the world of childrearing can often lead to marital problems. “As a result they stop having sex and that happy couple who used to enjoy each other as people and have fun together disappears. He gravitates towards women who understand his working life and she becomes isolated within a coterie of other mothers, and nobody is happy,” she suggested. She added “‘I think it’s really important for a woman to choose a man who won’t try to make her less in any way. Not thinner, quieter, less flirty, less fiery, less challenging – less of anything that makes her herself. You need a man who loves you for all those things, not despite them, otherwise after a while he’ll try to squash them out of you and then you’ll become unhappy.”
Considering her own relationship, and those she had seen fall apart in her professional life, Ayesha concluded “It’s really hard to find a man who’s genuinely sorted enough to deal with a strong, independent, successful woman, indeed to want and need that kind of partnership of equals. But they do exist. So if you find one, you should marry him.”