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20 Things Learned from 15 Years of Marriage

Being married is an adventure. Anyone that tells you differently has either never been married or are delusional. I have known my husband for 2/3 of my life and there are still times that I learn something from him, about him or from the simple act of marriage.

20 Things Learned About Marriage

    1. Men and women are different. I came from a house full of men and was shocked how little I actually understood about them. Men and women process information differently, look at things differently and even value things at a different level.

    2. Flirting is healthy for the relationship but keep it in the marriage relationship. Sit across the room from each other and flirt with each other like you did when you were courting.

    3. There is no way I can ever change a spouse. If you think that by doing things different or saying things different that you will get a different reaction from your spouse then you are being set up for disappointment.

    4. People are different. My husband and I have different ways of doing things that often go against the “normal male/female” style. Each of us has a unique personality.

    5. Yelling is not an effective form of communication. It doesn’t matter if you are simply yelling from one room to the next. Yelling tends to amp up the tone of the words and misunderstandings happen more often.

    6. Words may mean exactly what those words are meant to say. It wouldn’t matter if they were spoken or written. They are easy to understand.

    7. Words may have no meaning what so ever. The important message can come from the non-verbal signals.

    8. Words can mean what they say but still have an edge directed by non-verbal signals. Communication can be messy.

    9. Dividing jobs around the house is a good idea but expect to still do it all yourself and you won’t have to argue over who does what.

    10. Men can be good at cleaning and women can be good at yard work. Forget what “they” say and find your own path.

    11. The couple that plays together stays together. Find things that you can enjoy doing together and make a point to do it regularly (watching television or movies does NOT count).

    12. Hand holding builds a bond that will not be easily broken. Make opportunities to hold hands every chance you get.

    13. There are times when just sitting quietly and enjoying the day can do a lot for the relationship.

    14. Treat every day like Christmas. People think of giving and being nice and doing special things at Christmas time. Carry that feeling all through the year and you will build a strong marriage.

    15. Your spouse has to be more important than the kids. Kids need love and attention but a strong marriage between their parents is the quickest way for them to get that.

    16. Feelings get more intense with the foundation of time.

    17. Reminiscing about courtship, weddings and honeymoons can help boost the feelings of love to a higher level.

    18. A determination to love no matter what, when or why will create a successful foundation for a long term marriage.

    19. No matter what others may say, you are not marrying the family. You marry your spouse. The sooner you both learn that your union must be the final factor and not mom, dad, brother, sister or any other relative then the sooner you will build a bond to face the world.

    20. Marriage must be a three cord strand – you, your spouse and God – if it is to stay in tact against the pressures of life.

A good marriage takes work, patience, understanding and a focus on something outside of self. The longer I am married the more I learn that building a good marriage is not something that comes easy but something that must be built over time.

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