Dr M: Tolerance key to happy marriage
PUTRAJAYA: Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has shared his secret to being happily married to Tun Dr Siti Hasmah Mohd Ali for the past 62 years.
He said tolerance, as well as the need to consider the feelings and their children’s future, was the most important key to their relationship.
In an exclusive interview with The Third Age Media Association and Bernama News Channel at Perdana Leadership Foundation here recently, he said tolerance was the key to maintaining a healthy and balanced relationship.
“Well, my wife always says that behind every successful man, there is a wife, not a woman. She objects to that,” said the 93-yearold.
“When we were young, we have our differences, tension and all that.
“But as you grow older, you realise that you cannot change your partner much and she cannot change me much, and we learn to accept that this is what the other person is like.”
He said as he spent most of his time in politics, Dr Siti Hasmah accompanied him on most occasions.
“And if I cannot be with her because of work, she tolerates that.”
He stressed that there was a need to consider the feelings of their children as it would be disastrous for the family when parents broke up and remarried.
“The children will never have a good life.
“Therefore, you need to show concern for your children.”
The couple met at the King Edward VII College of Medicine in Singapore (now part of National University of Singapore) in 1947 and got married in 1956.
Dr Mahathir’s first tenure as prime minister was from 1981 to 2003, becoming Malaysia’s longest-serving prime minister, before making a comeback after the 14th General Election in May.
Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad with his wife, Tun Dr Siti Hasmah Mohd Ali, at the Merdeka month celebration in George Town last month.