Couples that have been married for decades have probably been ‘through’ it all. At the beginning, many are pretty clueless but sure about one thing, they’re young at heart and in love. It’s a journey many rush to begin but throw in the towel as soon as they hit a snag and contemplate on giving up along the way! Remember that the magic isn’t in getting married with all the glits and glam… But staying in the marriage. A number of couples have shared their experiences and different ways they’ve tried to get to where they are in their marriages. Some of these marriage advises have helped most through good times and hard times. While some of the lessons have and still are being learned through mistakes.
Make faith your priority. Pray with each other, for each other. Every marriage is much stronger with God in between. Refrain from considering divorce as an option. Remember that there’s no such thing as ‘a perfect marriage.’ You get the best from each other’s imperfections. Intertwine in each other’s thoughts and considerations. Decisions you both ‘individually’ make will definitely impact both of you, one way or another.
Don’t put your marriage ‘on hold’ for the sake of your career, hobbies or any other pursuit. That would be sacrificing your marriage for lesser things. It’s all about team work. Togetherness! Don’t allow your better half face a struggle without your support & partnership.
Here’s an interesting one! Your better half doesn’t have mind reading abilities… Therefore have clear communications on your thoughts and feelings. Talk to each other BUT most importantly, listen to each other. Avoid all kinds of cheating… Find ways to keep the spark alive! Go on dates, spice up your intimacy among other interesting stuff. Flirt with each other BUT never exercise these things outside your marriage. ‘To have and to hold.’
Try as much as you can not to point fingers towards each other…the blame game has been winning for some! When you find yourselves facing struggles, try working together with mutual respect to get to solutions. Why not try to brag about your better half with absolute focus on their good deeds instead of always pointing out what they are doing wrong.
There’s power in your wedding band. It’s a witness to the vows you exchanged before God and the world. It’s a reminder that both of you are connected and it will remind the world that you’re off limits!
Represent your spouse in any way you can. Protect each other’s reputation at all times and in all places. Your mind, heart & tongue should never get bitter when it comes to your spouse. Be your better half’s biggest fan! Be the one who impacts courage and wipe away their ‘tears’ whenever you can.
Stay away from porn or anything that creates sexual fantasies apart from your spouse. Avoid judging them, rather be open minded & be physically, spiritually and mentally monogamous. Practice patience with each other. Your spouse is always more important than any of your schedules.
When trust is broken, be open to offer forgiveness instantly which will create the opportunity for trust to be rebuilt…SHOULDN’T BE A HABIT THOUGH! The words, ‘I Love You, I Forgive You’ carry a lot of weight during hard times. When mistakes happen, be quick to admit and humbly seek for forgiveness. You should be quick to say, ‘I was wrong and I’m sorry.’ ‘For better, for worse.’
Secrecy is the greatest enemy of Marriage. Never keep secrets from each other. Lying to each other breaks trust, which is the soul foundation of a strong marriage.
Your tongues should be filled words of love towards each other. Your words matter but the tone you use on very words, matter the most. That can definitely set the tone of your entire marriage. Don’t put your marriage on hold while you’re raising your children or else you’ll both end up with an empty nest.
Give your best to each other, not the leftovers after you’ve given your best to other people. Let’s get this straight, marriage is NOT a 50-50, however, divorce is. Marriage has to be 100-100. It’s NOT about splitting things into half but both partners giving everything they’ve got. The goal is always to make it work and last forever, by all means necessary! ‘For richer, for poorer.’
Prioritize what happens in the bedroom. It takes more that just sex to build a strong marriage , but it’s nearly impossible to build a strong marriage without it. Remember that strong marriage seldom has two strong people at the same time. It’s usually either one taking turn in being strong for the ‘team’ in moments when the other feels weak. ‘In sickness and in health.’
Make laughter the soundtrack of your marriage. Share moments of joy, even in hard times, search for reasons to laugh. When arguments occur, it’s always important to note that there isn’t going to be a winner or a loser! Partners either win or lose, together!
Always answer your phone when your better half calls, and whenever possible. Try not to get absorbed in your work when you’re with your spouse. Make time together a priority. Budget for a consistent date night. ‘Time is a must have ingredient for a good relationship’ so consistently invest time into your marriage. There are no shortcuts on this one! Building a strong marriage takes time and patience.
Your friends will impact your marriage , so choose your friends with a lot of keenness and seek God for wisdom to have the spirit of discernment. Surround yourself with friends who will build and strengthen your marriage but also avoid those friendships that may tempt you to compromise your character and lose yourself. ‘Until death do us part.’