As I approach my ten-year wedding anniversary and as I help so many people with marital problems today (it seems as though 80% of married couples I know are having “issues”) I am forced to look at what it takes to make a marriage really work. I have been with my husband now for almost 18 years in total and our relationship has certainly not been without problems. We have certainly had our fair share of personal issues, which one day I will write about, but today we are still very much in love. I have had many people ask me if my husband has a brother, or they say things like “MY husband does not love me the way yours loves you.” Although I feel extremely lucky and honored to have the husband I do have, I am always reminded that the grass can look greener on the other side until you get there. I simply mean this in the way of “we are not perfect.” I do believe I am lucky. I do believe I have the best husband in the world and I do believe there is no one out there who could ever treat me the way he does, or vise-a-versa…..however, this is a feeling we should ALL FEEL EVERY DAY! If you don’t, then let’s get you there. So many people settle. The most dangerous things to ever feel in a relationship is boredom and complacency. When you get to the point where marriage is a routine, you’re in trouble. But you can change it. It is ok to set date nights, to give each other lists of what you need and want on a daily basis (eventually those lists are not needed as they become a new habit and a thing the other wants to do simply because they want to make you happy.)
The first thing you need to do is think about and write why you fell in love with them in the first place. What was it that gave you those butterfly feelings? What is it that made you think about them so much that when you were not together that working was almost impossible? What is it they did that made you smile so big and so long your cheeks hurt? You need to remember what gave you that deep down giddy feeling of complete bliss and hang on to those feelings. Rekindle based on those things. Build off of those things. Bring your relationship back to the point where your spouse is the first person you think about when you wake up in the morning and the one you can not sleep without before going to bed. Do whatever it takes and don’t be afraid or embarrassed to say what it is that you need.
I believe there are some rules that all relationships should have. For each couple it differs but I say these are the three most important for everyone:
1) Never go to bed angry. No matter what, talk about it and go to bed holding and loving each other.
2) Never go to bed without one another (unless it is impossible to do so like one is at work, etc..) Even on days where one of you are sick, go to bed to hold them and watch TV from bed while the other sleeps. Whatever it is, go to bed together.
3) No matter what you do, say, think or feel, always do it with the other in mind. Ask yourself this, “How would I feel if my spouse was doing (or feeling, or thinking or saying) this?” If the answer is anything less than completely loved and elated then you shouldn’t be doing it.
I believe LOVE IS ENOUGH! It doesn’t matter the challenge. I have seen relationships of abuse, survive. I have seen relationships of affairs, survive. I believe that as long as a person is TRULY wanting and working on changing and CHANGES then as long as you love them it can work. I am not saying it is easy. I am not saying it is quick. But I truly believe it is worth it. Imagine going from a relationship that no one would ever want and you were afraid or embarrassed to be apart of to a fairy tale relationship that everyone envies. Fairy Tales Do Come True! Fighting for what you need, want and deserve is not only achievable but you are deserving and worth it so don’t give up! Ever!
More on marriage in the future….save what you have now! Find your Hero Within together and have a marriage you deserve!