By Daniela Giampapa-Bendayán
She is naive, affectionate and thoughtful; He is realistic, friendly and pragmatic. She’s argentine; He is Colombian. She has many brothers; He is an only child. Santi and Laurita have totally different personalities, they are like water and oil, they are opposite poles.
They recently published their book “Casados y Complicados” (Married and Complicated). In it they tell their story from before they met, their romance, dating, marriage, crisis, couple chaos, disasters everywhere, reunions, reconciliations, forgiveness, much but much forgiveness, true friendship, second chances, resignation, rules, standards, communication, and much more.
Santi and Laurita open their hearts and speak intimately, from the depths of their souls, about the art of living as a couple. Love is not perfect, it requires a lot of teamwork and they show us why.
Of all the tips in the book, which single one would you give a couple?
S: Being best friends helped us a lot. Be friends, talk to each other, and above all be best friends. That is the person you live with, in many cases, with whom you work, if it is not your friend or best friend everything will be more complicated.
L: Be friends, because that way you can be silent, both partners can be doing their own thing and will feel comfortable. Friendship saves many things, you have to be friends and tell each other everything.
You live and work together, how do you maintain your personal space and still feed the passion?
S: In our case, we each have moments when we’re doing things on our own, although they are very few. Sometimes I go with my friends to do sports and Laurita knows that this is my time.
L: I also have my moments, I like to do things without him getting involved, not because I don’t want to but because I like solitude. When he is with his friends doing sports, I go get a facial, I dedicate myself to myself.
Would you remarry at age 21 again?
S: No. I think we learned that lesson. Having married so young and immature, I would not do it again, not because of marriage but for the stage in which we both were. We didn’t even know each other while dating. When we got married we realized that we were two totally different and unknown people. If it were my decision, I would wait to get to know each other a little more and show our true faces before getting married. It is not a matter of age but of immaturity.
L: If they told me that it will work as it does now, I would do it again.
S: We would have saved ourselves many headaches.
L: The strong stories of each person are their destiny, it is what was coming to them. I would not change anything. Santi thinks so because he suffered more pain than me.
S: That pain we experienced made us the people we are today. I didn’t get a job in Houston, I was frustrated, we didn’t have privacy in the house, 13 people lived under one roof, a lot of frustration accumulated and I wondered if that really marriage was because what I was really living was hell. So I decided to leave Laurita and return to Miami.
L: I think men mature later than women. He was faced with responsibilities at 21 that he did not want to have. When he asked me to marry him so that we would not be split apart living in different cities, I told him to think about it very well, because that was not just getting married, and that marriage was something bigger; but I already had the engagement ring in front of me and I couldn’t say no. I did not hesitate but I was very afraid. It was crazy. We were barely 21 years old.
S: I took it all very lightly. Get married? What is the worst thing that could happen?
L: When he left and got some distance, he did the right thing. Had he stayed, we would have disrespected each other and even divorced. You did well to leave, Santi.
S: Thank you very much!
L: At what age would you have married then?
S: At 25 years old.
What would you never forgive from each other?
S: The first thing that occurs to me would be infidelity, but at the same time, I think there are no reasons at this time because we are doing very well. Although I don’t know if that would be a reason to never forgive her because forgiveness is deeply rooted among us. In our relationship the proud one is me. She has taught me to forgive faster.
L: I don’t conceive life without forgiving. It is part of my essence. If there was a deception I’d forgive him but I do not know if I would continue with him. I don’t want grudges in my life because they kill you bit by bit.
Will there be a second part of the book Casados y Complicados Complicated?
S: Yes! We left many things out. This was an adventure to try to see how it is. We will talk about Max.
L: There are things that we are living today and that are going into that book.
Santi and Laurita intimately:
S: I take melatonin for sleep every night. I touch my beard a lot.
L: I can’t stand hearing someone chewing.
What is on your bedside tables?
S: Melatonin! Many glasses of water that accumulate overnight and the cell phone charger.
L: Facial and foot creams for before bedtime, a book, and a little plant.
S and L: As a couple we like to travel a lot.
S: Buy tennis shoes. I love to buy them, several times a month, I am obsessed with them. Shop on Amazon and eat. There is God, food and Laurita.
L: Paint, do creative things.
S: Rice with black beans.
L: Gnocchi with pesto and polenta.
Define each other in 3 words:
S: Loving, consenting, and friend.
L: Beautiful, gentleman, and generous.
Learn all the unique history of Santi and Laurita in their book. You can get it on Amazon and at Barnes & Noble bookstores.
Listen to them!
At the El Flow de Miami, Monday through Friday from 3:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. by Mix 98.3 FM.