I recently asked my single Facebook friends what they wanted to know about marriage. I have never had a post focused on singles, and I thought it would be helpful to my single readers to answer their questions and share my thoughts and experience as a married woman.
When I got married, I was not surrounded by married friends. Many in my family were married and had been for quite some time. However, I did not have anyone in my life who had real conversations with me about what to expect in marriage. Throughout my childhood I witnessed marriages that were greatly successful and full of love, marriages that were flat out disastrous, and marriages that were on cruise control and hardly beneficial. I observed them all and tried to learn from the highs and lows of marriage–not allowing others’ lows to cloud my vision of marriage. Although we have had an imperfect marriage, I am thankful that these first five years of marriage have been nothing short of a blessing.
What Singles Want to Know About Marriage
Q. How do you decide where to live (once married) when you do not live in the same city?
I met my husband at the beginning of my final year at Ohio State University. I am originally from Indiana, but knew I had no desire returning home after graduation. My husband (then fiancé) had a steady job and had recently established a business in the city. Staying in Columbus, where my husband was born and raised, was a no brainer for me.
Sit down and figure out what your goals are, individually and as a couple. Where can you comfortably live? Determine what city will allow you to live comfortably and where you can grow your career, education, and even future family. Speaking of family, be sure to consider how far you can stand to be away from your family (or your spouse’s). Most importantly, ask God to plainly show you what location is best.
Q. How are you able to remain in the same house after a big disagreement?
Most married folks master this because disagreements occur often. During the first three months or so of marriage my husband and I got into a couple intense disagreements. Once it resulted in my husband leaving the house and another time me leaving the house. No worries though, we were right back together within an hour or two, at home on both occasions (the fresh air DID help!).
It is cliché, but making a huge effort to not go to bed mad at one another helps you to not “lose it” and, to answer the question, remain in the same house after a big disagreement. Having that in mind helps my husband and I to chat about what is upsetting us. Even if we don’t come to a true agreement, talking helps to diffuse our anger and keeps us from wanting to leave the house. Respect each other’s opinion and perspective, even if you think it’s half crazy, irrational and worthless. You’ll learn quickly what battles are worth fighting and when it’s best to keep the peace. As we said as kids, “Save the drama for your momma!”
Q. How do you avoid growing a part?
The best way to stay connected with your spouse is to spend quality time with them. In the average marriage, spouses see one another every day for hours at a time. Living together, however, does not guarantee you will have many moments of quality time with your mate. My husband and I get busy with work, projects, our children, church activities, etc., and find that we haven’t made any time to sit and talk or go out on a date. If we were to continue neglecting one another, it would cause our relationship to get a little rocky.
It’s important to MAKE TIME for one another, connect through communication, expressing your needs and feelings (allowing your mate to do the same) and to connect through sex. When I feel disconnected from my husband the first thing I do is chat it up with him then initiate intimacy. The combo is powerful!
Q. How much fun is it? What are the cute things that come along with marriage?
Marriage is not all gloom and doom. Well, it could be, IF you marry the wrong person, or choose to be a miserable individual, which I won’t discuss in right now. But yes, marriage IS fun and rewarding–mattter of fact, it will only be as fun as you and your spouse want it to be.
In marriage, you grow to know your spouse more than they know themselves, making it easy to anticipate their needs, doing things for them that they will enjoy and appreciate. I love knowing what my husband finds amusing. Every chance I get I will share a story, article, video or social media post that will have him in tears and laughing. Luckily, my husband is a huge kid inside, so it doesn’t take much to get him rolling on the floor with laughter.
Marriage also allows you to watch each other grow as individuals, gives you someone who will support your endeavors and help you reach goals, and the opportunity to help one another become their best selves. This aids the happiness of your home as well.
I would love to continue answering your marriage questions, so if you enjoy posts like this, send me an email with your questions: firstname.lastname@example.org
Married folks, what do you wish you knew before you got married?