Good Friday morning everyone!
Yes, I am up early this morning and watching the sun rise over the desert out my office window while I am typing this. I have all the windows open and enjoying the cool desert air and the birds singing away in the trees outside. There is a load of laundry in the washer and the two girl cats are still sleeping, one downstairs on the couch and the other one up here in her bed, the boy cat is running from window to window to get just the right view of the birds outside. This is what I call happy and content.
My husband and I were just talking last night about our marriage and what marriage means to us. I guess we got all caught up in the media frenzy going on right now and the whole celebrity brewhaha… Anyway, it was a good talk and we both came up with pretty much the same outlook and perspective on what marriage means. So I have broken down what we found has worked in our marriage and what we believe makes a marriage.
- You have to like one another and be friends first.
- Tell each other everything about yourself – the good, the bad, the baggage you carry with you, everything straight up front before you even start dating seriously.
- Make time for each other every day (at least 30 minutes), even after you are married especially, just to talk face to face.
- Be considerate of/to each other – this to me is a big one along with the following.
- Be respectful of one another – this is also another big one for me, because if you don’t have these two then you really don’t even have a relationship.
- Always be honest – this one we both agreed is the biggest relationship ender of all. Because if you can’t be honest with one another about everything then there is no respect or trust.
- Support one another emotionally – if you love your spouse then you want them to be happy, so encourage them to be or do whatever it is that makes them happy (to an extent-no every night out with the boys/girls at the strip club). In other words if they want to go back to school, start a new career, take their career in a new direction, start a new hobby, etc.. No matter how big or small a thing you might think it is, to them it’s what makes their life complete.
- Keep separate bank accounts and one joint account for household bills. At the beginning of our relationship we had separate accounts and we just divided the bills and we had a lot of arguments about money. Then we decided to join our accounts but that did not work either because neither of us liked being told how to spend “our” money. So we decided to go back to separate accounts and one joint account just for the bills and we both put in half our paychecks. When my husbands hours got cut, several years back, I had a really good job that paid very well every two weeks plus commission, and tips every week. So I would put in our joint account one whole paycheck, commission and all my tips until he got his hours back. Everything works out smoothly, no arguments about money, and we are never late on any of our bills (all four of them).
- Flirt with one another every day. Flirting and teasing sexually keeps the spark alive.
- Set goals – personal, financial, household, and long term. Be sure you are on the same page and working as a team to execute each of the goals that you set, because if you try to do them individually then it won’t work. Also re-evaluate each of your goals every so often as each one is met.
- Above all believe in a higher power – we both came from different backgrounds as far as “religion”. My husband and I are now both Spiritual and believe in God but we are not religious. We pray every day and (I sometimes pray several times a day), we both have faith that God is watching over us, thus He has proven many times to us that he does provide for us what we need when we need it. This has really helped our marriage in the last 12 years become even stronger.
Well there you have it our break down of what has worked in our marriage and we have been together for 20 years so far (oh my, where has the time gone?). We are not perfect and we/I still have melt downs every now and then, but for the most part we still have a lot of fun together and enjoy each others company. We have overcome a lot of obstacles in our relationship, that we both believe have strengthened our bond with one another. I look forward to many more wonderful, “boring” years with my significant other.
Maybe you can take away something from this list that will help you, but remember we are not professional marriage counselors or therapist’s. What I have listed here are our own personal feelings, and things that we have implemented in our own relationship that have worked for us.
May you have many happy years together with the one you love.