15 Secrets to Make a Marriage Work
Challenges are normal in marriages. As they say, love is not enough to make a marriage successful. Both partners have to do their best to make sure that the marriage will work. Otherwise, the entire family suffers. These are fifteen secrets that real-life couples attest to being pivotal to the success of their marriages:
- Listen to your partner
Listening to each other may seem easy but you would be surprised how many couples struggle with this. Both partners should realize that hearing and listening are two vastly different things. To be a good listener, you should open your mind and heart to what your partner is saying. This way, you can understand their perspective.
- Accept your partner
One of the most common reasons for breakups between married couples is lack of acceptance. Both men and women have this tendency to try to change their partners to what they think they should be. If they have to, however, they have to make that journey on their own. Focus on the positive traits and features of your partner so you will be less stressed.
- Be responsible
Both partners must be responsible as individuals and as a team. When you set out to do something as a couple, you must remember to take responsibility whether it will be successful or not. You also have to accept that part of it may be on you.
Another aspect of marriage that being responsible would be helpful in is during arguments. If someone said something that was uncalled for, the other party must take responsibility by apologizing.
Be equally responsible in parenting as well. Both should try and spend as much time with the kids as possible. With some free time, both can help the kids do their homework. In case you both are too busy to help with homework of your kids, at least have them home tuition for the subjects they find difficult.
- Go on date nights
Date nights are essential to a marriage as they keep the fire burning. You do not have to go to a fancy restaurant or a luxury hotel. There are many things you can do depending on what you have in mind. Even just one night on a camping beach is already a romantic gesture. Make sure that your phones are off so that you can concentrate on each other.
- Be intimate
Therapists always say that sex is important if you are to keep your marriage healthy. According to some researchers and therapists, sex should be done on a regular basis. Sex should also be interesting so it would be best to sit down and talk about experimenting. Keep it exciting but safe in the bedroom.
- Spot “soft” emotions
The concept of a “soft” emotion may be foreign to you but it is incredibly helpful in ensuring that partners empathize with each other. For example, when you feel anger, you are most likely masking another emotion. Usually, these emotions are your vulnerabilities. You could be jealous, insecure or disappointed. Partners should be able to look for the soft emotion that may be just bubbling beneath the surface.
- Stop being controlling
Being controlling is never good in a marriage. Control may be how a partner wants to keep the other to fit in to what they expect of them. When one partner starts becoming controlling, the other may start resenting that. This is why talking with each other about such issues is a good thing. If settling between each other is no longer working, it is best to go to a marriage counselor.
- Avoid ever using the D-word
No matter what stage you are in your marriage, you should never use the D-word. Couples have been known to use divorce as a threat to each other. This can be used as a control mechanism that may be bound to fail as most of those who do it end up filing divorce papers. Not only is it immature, it also does not solve the problem the couple is facing.
- Be realistic about your expectations
The moment you get married, you should start letting go of the fantasy. Fairy tale endings do not happen in real life marriages. You need to be realistic about what you expect of your partner and your relationship. Accept that sometimes, being “okay” is more than enough. Otherwise, you will just end up being disappointed. This could lead to resentment, which you do not want in a marriage.
- Never take each other for granted
Never be complacent in a marriage. Always strive to be the best partner you can be. This way, your partner will see that you value them. They can return the favor too. Sure, it may be human nature to be comfortable with what is familiar to you but when you are in a committed relationship, try to resist any urge to be complacent.
- Agree to disagree
You may be married now but you are still individuals. You are never going to agree on every single thing. These disagreements could be on something as small as your choice in tea or something big like your political affiliation. Part of why a lot of marriages succeed is when both partners have the ability to meet halfway and compromise. No one has to be right every time.
- Be independent
One of the keys to a happy marriage is maintaining your independence. The husband and the wife must be able to enjoy their own personal space and hobbies. Part of this is sometimes getting the time to be apart. This way, you can ensure that you are happy, which could lead to a happy marriage. After all, a marriage works only when both partners have a sense of fulfillment in their lives.
- Be romantic
Never take romantic acts for granted. This can help keep the fire alive in the marriage. Send them flowers. Place a love note. Give them a ring. All ideas are valid just as long as the other partner ends up happy.
- Tell each other compliments
Compliments make a person feel good. Acknowledge the positive traits that your partner may have.
- Learn to communicate
To say that communication is important in a marriage is an understatement. The couple must be able to talk to each other about their feelings and issues freely. Partners should also look out for non-verbal cues. Read about love languages, which is how a person communicates their love. This could be in the form of acts of service or words of affirmation.
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