I will often walk through public places and watch how people interact with each other. I always make it a point to look at how couples relate to each other and to their children when they don’t think anyone is watching. The truth of the matter is there are a lot of marriages that are hurting today. Divorce has become the norm and split families are no longer in the minority of family structures. After being married for over 22 years I have learned quite a few things and am still learning every day. The main point to remember is that your family is worth fighting for.
Fighting The Wrong Enemy
Have you ever looked at your spouse as the enemy? It is extremely hard and lonely to be in a relationship where your spouse is a stranger and you are alone. What I have learned is that communication can fix a lot of things. Often times husbands think their wives know that they are loved but never say or show it. Wives are burned out caring for kids and the little things that make the family work and neglect communicating that they appreciate their husband. Every family is different, and every marriage has people that speak different love languages. I have often thought my wife spoke one language while I spoke another. The truth is two stressed people can either help each other or tear each other a part. The truth is in most cases your spouse is hurting and burned out just as much as you are. Communication (not blowing up) can fix a lot of confusion in a marriage.
Helping Each Other
So now that you know that your spouse is most likely not your enemy what can you do about it? I made up my mind that I need to live my life through my spouses eyes. What is it that they need? What are they feeling? How can I meet those needs? Many years ago while going through marriage counseling I remember hearing the words that truly never left me. “If you want a great marriage than you give your spouse 100% first and then they will have 100% reciprocated back to you”. This seemed foreign so many years ago, but now after 4 children and 22 years of marriage I can tell you that this is completely true. The more I meet my spouses needs, the more they meet mine. It is truly a beautiful thing.
Growing Old Together
No matter how stressful things get I always try to focus on the future and what the last phases of our life will look like. There are all kinds of choices you can make in life. Some decisions prove to be good and some not so good. The one thing I have never wanted to do was to get so stressed that I make a decision in my marriage that would rob future generations from seeing their prior generations love and success in family and in marriage. You can leave your children money. You can leave them memories. The one thing we are determined to do is to leave them the legacy of a healthy family and a great marriage. When I grow old I want to be able to look at my wife and know that we had a full life; one full of trials and hard times, but also one that stood the test of time.
Photo by: Pixaby