PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 06 July, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 06 July, 2010, 12:00am

The keys to a good marriage

Some people never get married. There are many reasons why they want to remain single.

Some don't want to lose their freedom. Then there are those who cannot afford to raise a family. It's little wonder that such people cannot find a partner. After all, marriage is a big responsibility.

According to a report, it seems some people need proper training to be a good husband or wife.

In Japan, schools are starting up classes to turn singles into marriage material. Students are taught to act elegantly, dress smartly and learn basic manners such as how to sit properly, how to get out of a car and how to be more romantic. They hope to find their perfect partner and also make their future in-laws happy.

Many say a successful marriage depends not only on finding the ideal 'mate'. They say it is also about how a couple solve their differences and survive the changes in their daily lives.

However, I believe being sincere is an essential element for a good marriage. Some individuals are willing to sacrifice anything to get what they want. Mostly, we act on instinct. A marriage school may be worth attending, because it may work for some people. However, they will only be following instructions, not their hearts.

For instance, you may eat slowly, speak softly, and cater to your partner's needs, using all the skills that you have learned in marriage school.

But, deep down, you may be noisy, choosy and moody. Masking your true colours may put a relationship in danger. Only by acting true to your heart can a marriage work.

In short, it is good to learn the skills to be a good partner, but it's the quality of sincerity that is the biggest advantage in a happy and successful marriage.

Yukiko, Methodist College

Pin-up beggar deserves privacy

Recently, Cheng Guorong, a beggar in Ningbo, Zhejiang province, gained fame after a photo showed him to be a man with an unlikely fashion sense.

Fake images of this homeless, mentally disturbed man have started to turn up on the internet.

One shows him as a stripped-to-the-waist muscular model being visited by the president and a general from the film Red Cliff.

Other celebrities have talked about him and one even joked that she wanted to marry him.

This may all make interesting reading and viewing but it is really bad for the 34-year-old 'victim'.

Cheng has had problems - his wife died and he is separated from his children and other family members.

He just wants to be a normal person and live his life in peace.

I think we should respect him and his privacy. We should not photograph him without permission.

The government should be more aware of the problem of beggars and help them.

Phyllis Chan, Pooi To Middle School

Domestic violence has no place in HK

No one would hurt their loved ones intentionally. However, when people are under great pressure, they may do something unusual to relieve their stress, including hurting family members.

Such stories appear in the newspapers almost every day. Recently, a man stabbed his wife and twin daughters to death in Tin Shui Wai.

Yet, before the tragedy, the woman had repeatedly sought help from various parties, including the police, community organisations and social welfare workers. Still, they failed to save the family.

According to the Social Welfare Department, there has been a rapid increase in cases involving domestic violence.

Although the problem is very common in the city, I have never witnessed any domestic violence. None of my friends have suffered from or witnessed it either.

This may be because the abused women or children would rather stay silent and pretend that all is well.

The government should encourage those who suffer from mental problems to seek help. It can also grant more subsidies to schools to hire more psychologists and social workers so that students with problems have someone to turn to for advice.

We should eradicate domestic violence. It has no place in a prosperous society like ours.

Vivian Leung Cheuk-yan, Tsuen Wan Government Secondary School