Staff Love Story: Q & A with Crystal & Christian Dory


Olivia Vanden Elzen, Staff Writer, Advanced Journalism

The recent Q & A online session between the Dunlaps has prompted another interview of a Notre Dame duo–the Dorys. Although Mrs. Crystal Dory has been teaching Spanish here for quite a few years, her husband Christian Dory is in his first year at NDA.  Their passion for travel, love of young people, and overall enthusiasm for life make them the perfect interview for Valentine’s Week.

Q:How did you two first meet?

A: Mrs. Dory: “We met through a mutual friend in May, right after my 21st birthday. We hung out all summer just as friends and went to Brewer games or up north to my cabin to go tubing down the river. It was a really fun summer! But, our first official date wasn’t until that October on Sweetest Day.”

    Mr. Dory: “We met through mutual friends. It was kind of funny since we ran in the same circles and were at the same places at the same time but never met. We started hanging out with each other all of May, June, July, August, September, October where we had our first official date on Sweetest Day. We knew each other for six months before we started dating, and we were really good buddies. I would call her up and I’d say, ‘Do you wanna go get some lunch?’ And she would say ‘sure,’ so we were really good friends before we started dating. I got to figure out I liked her first. It’s really the way to start a relationship.”


Q: What is your proposal story?

A: Mrs. Dory: “It was a really fun night; I remember it like it was yesterday! It was a Friday night, on Valentine’s Day, and I took off work which was kind of a big deal because I didn’t have a ton of money back then and I had to work. Then, Christian came and picked me up in a taxi, and I didn’t realize he was super nervous. But looking back now, he was really awkwardly nervous. We went to the same restaurant we went to on Sweetest Day, Blu, and even sat on the same exact couch! So we were sitting there and then all of the sudden he gets down on one knee, and I was thinking to myself, ‘What the heck is going on here?’ And I have always told myself when someone proposes to me, I was going to ask what my mother first asked my father which was,’Did you ask my dad?’ Then Christian said ‘yes,’ and then I said, ‘What did he say?’ Then we went to a wonderful dinner at Christopher’s and people were sending over bottles of champagne to our table, and it was great. Then after, we had to go to a restaurant I worked at, Flannery’s, because I had to go tell all of my friends, and I was the first one in my core group to get engaged.”

    Mr. Dory: “On Sweetest Day we went to Blu, which is a really fancy shmancy place at the top of the Pfister Hotel and it overlooks the entire city of Milwaukee, and I think it even rotates which is kind of funny. Then on Valentine’s Day, we went back to the Pfister and we were seated at the same exact couch we sat at for our first date! And I couldn’t wait, so once we sat down, I immediately said, ‘Two years ago you changed my life forever, and now I would like to change your life forever.’


Q: How long have you been together? How long have you been married?

A: Mrs. Dory: “We got married 14 years ago; our anniversary is August 14, 2004. We met in 2001 and started dating in 2001. September 11th was actually a really important day for us, which made us really see what’s important. I called Christian because I was really worried about him; he doesn’t have any family in Wisconsin. That’s when I started developing feelings for him.”

    Mr. Dory: “Well, it feels like my whole life. I think 16 years together, I don’t know. We don’t really celebrate anniversaries because we’re pretty chill about that.”


Q: What is your favorite thing about your spouse?

A: Mrs. Dory: “He’s really patient and hardworking, and when he starts something, he finishes it. Whether it’s in the house or at a job or anything, he is just so patient and sees everything through.”

    Mr. Dory: “Sense of humor. We can laugh. We’re constantly laughing. And that she likes me, of course, and she can put up with me. It’s helpful.”


Q: What is your favorite memory about each other?

A: Mrs. Dory: “I would have to say our first time together in Southeast Asia. It was so fun! Also, our whole married life enjoying our dog Copper.”

    Mr. Dory: “Definitely my 40th birthday–she tricked me! She totally got me! I had no idea. She told me we were going to a Celine Dion concert in Las Vegas so I honestly wasn’t very excited, but she secretly planned a weekend in Napa Valley with all of our friends! So when we got to the airport at our gate, they came out of nowhere and scared the living daylights out of me! It was awesome! I really wasn’t looking forward to Vegas, but I was slowly building myself up to the idea. If there was a day I could live over and over again, it would definitely be that day.”


Q: What do you think is your spouse’s spirit animal, and why?

A: Mrs. Dory: “I would say a bear. He literally is a bear. He calls himself ‘bear’ all of the time.”

    Mr. Dory: “A dog. She’s friendly and loyal. We should all try to live like dogs. We would have a lot of friends.”


Q:Which couple would you consider to be your “relationship goals”/ which couple inspires you?

A: Mrs. Dory: “My parents. They are truly remarkable and how my mom put up with my dad.”

   Mr. Dory: “Crystal’s mom and dad for sure. They love being with each other all the time;  they can count on each other.They are very old school which is so adorable.”


Q: What does your ideal date night look like?

A: Mrs. Dory: “Honestly, take-out from somewhere because we live downtown, eat by 5:30, jammies by 6 and staying in and TV. Or, a two-night weekend away or even a double date night with friends.”

    Mr. Dory: “I would say jammies, but we have to step up our game. Dinner out with friends because we really enjoy hanging out with them.”


Q: From your relationship experience, what is your best relationship advice?

A: Mrs. Dory: “Be on the same page about everything. Whether it be finances or anything else, it is really crucial for a long-lasting relationship.”

    Mr. Dory: “Choose your spouse wisely. Make sure the choices you are making are for the right reasons and for the long-haul.”


Q: If you had to pick, what would have to be the theme song that best describes your relationship?

A: Mrs. Dory:This Year’s Love” by David Gray, which is actually our wedding song!

    Mr. Dory:Sailing by Christopher Cross.”