Keeping the Happily Ever after
- Instead of trying to change something, he or she does – change you! Far too often, people get married with the belief they can simply change the person they married, molding him or her into the “perfect” mate. Instead, you need to accept your mate for the person he/she is. If a behavior needs to be changed, then provide support and encouragement.
- Communication is a key ingredient to any successful marriage. That means talking through situations rather than bottling up or yelling. By showing respect, you can work together as a couple should. With this, the two of you can talk to understand the other person’s side better.
- Keep intimacy as a part of the marriage. Remember, this person is the one you love, the one you want to share your life with, which means letting go of inhibitions. Intimacy is an excellent way to stay close, doing wonders for any marriage.
- Accept the flaws in your spouse. Since no one is perfect, you want to learn to appreciate the differences between the two of you. If your husband wakes up with bad hair or your wife is grumpy, love him/her, in spite of the flaws.
- Learn to ignore the small stuff. Every marriage faces challenges, some big and some small. Remind yourself that life is precious and short. Therefore, focus on the larger battles, working through them as a team while letting go of the incidentals that in the big scheme of things does not matter.
- Make sure you choose your battles wisely. If you are going to pick something apart, make sure it really matters. Unfortunately, unresolved arguments are a big issue in marriages, often leading to divorce. Therefore, unless the issue is something significant, learn to let some things roll off your back.
- Time for friends is also crucial. Once every other week, you should both take one day or evening to spend time apart and with same-sex friends. This will help you maintain your own identity and appreciate the time you have with your spouse.
- Never take your spouse for granted. Again, life is too precious. Instead, find things that your partner does well or things that please you and let him/her know. If your husband is outside working on the car, take time to bring him a cold glass of tea or lemonade…just because. If your wife has been home all day with the children, hire a babysitter and surprise her with a dinner out.
- Date…just because you are now legally married, you should not stop dating. Every Friday or Saturday night, even if you have children, make a date. This could be something as simple as bowling and beer or a romantic dinner and concert. The activity is not important, just that you get time for just the two of you.
- Be forgiving with your partner. You will be faced with tough times and you have a choice of forgiving him/her when a mistake happens or carrying it in the marriage. Obviously, if you do not forgive, the marriage will suffer. Therefore, if resolution is found, swallow your pride and forgive your mate, letting the new day be another beginning.
“Sunday = sports. It’s like the full moon or the changing of the tides. Let it be.”
- A man needs time to himself, so no matter how much you hate football, or how much you hate the fact that your house fills up with burping, mess-making guys during football games, simply smile and let it happen. It’s probably one of the very few things you husband has hung onto from his days as a free man. If he begins to feel like he can no longer do any of the things he used to enjoy before marriage, he may begin to think that just maybe, he was better off being single. He’ll take this out on you in small ways.
“Subtle hints do not work! Strong hints do not work! Obvious hints do not work! Just say it!”
- Women hint around, while men tend to be blunt and say what they really mean. So instead of dropping hints about what you’d like your husband to do or not do, just tell him in as straightforward a manner as possible. Otherwise, you’ll end up feeling like he doesn’t understand you, doesn’t listen to you or just doesn’t care, when in fact he probably has no idea you’ve been hinting at something.
“If you ask a question you don’t want an answer to, expect an answer you don’t want to hear.”
- Don’t ask your husband if a particular dress makes your behind look too big, or any other question to which a truthful answer may make you run away crying. Husbands are not tactful creatures. They will either tell you the truth or keep their mouths shut, neither of which will make you happy.