Marriage isn’t for the weak, but if done right, you can turn it into a GREAT marriage. When many of us get into a relationship we hope that it goes as far as being able to see that “happily ever after” day when we are able to get married. The only thing is, the wedding is just the beginning of a new chapter, NOT the end of the book. With successful marriages and the divorce rate being about 50/50 we never talk about the things that has helped that successful marriages to succeed.
Today, many people know someone who has been divorced, or has seen there parents get divorced. For myself, my parents got a divorce when I was around 15 years old. After being together for over 20 years, you could tell that both were a little bit out of it and the work to build seemed to be drained. Years later, I asked my mom about the divorce and one thing I took away from it that she told me is, “Divorce rarely happens just because of one person doing the wrong things.” and admitted that it was things she could have done better, just as it was things that my dad could have done better.
Now as my wife and I have just passed being married for 10 years, I always ask myself one question to continue to better our marriage. That is what can I do to make our marriage better. This can be a multitude of things, but these 10 things nails it on the head.
- Communicate openly and honestly: Communication is key to any successful relationship. Husbands should be open and honest with their partners about their feelings, thoughts, and concerns. I know everyone says, “Happy wife, Happy life”, but I will quick DISagree. Let’s say “Happy Spouse, Happy House.” To create that, I have to be able to speak on the things that may bother me, just as I am able to listen to things that may bother her. One thing I will add to this is also understanding how to communicate to each other. We can’t tell how we feel in a angry way, because it may come off demanding or too aggressive. You still want to show that it’s a big concern, but knowing how to communicate with each other is a HUGE part of communication as well. Many times we say, “well I told them how I feel,” but how you say it can be the reason why it didn’t get through.
- Show appreciation: Showing appreciation for your partner and the things they do can go a long way in building a stronger relationship. Simple gestures like saying thank you, giving a compliment, or doing something thoughtful can make a big difference.
- Take responsibility: Taking responsibility for your actions and mistakes shows your partner that you are accountable and willing to work on improving the relationship. Will you be perfect? never, but we will always work towards perfection. Taking responsibility for our wrong doings is probably top 3 of what makes men men. Acting liking I know everything, or will never do anything wrong do not leave any room for growth. Learn and take responsibility for your actions and continue to grow together.
- Make time for your partner: Spending quality time with your partner is important for maintaining a strong connection. Whether it’s going on a date night or just spending time at home together, make an effort to prioritize your partner and your relationship.
- Be supportive: Supporting your partner’s goals and aspirations can help them feel validated and encouraged in their pursuits.
- Be a good listener: Listening to your partner’s thoughts and concerns shows that you value their opinions and care about their well-being. No one wants to be in a relationship and feel like they aren’t being heard. Even though we want to take sometime to speak, we also need to remember we need to take more time to listen. Being a good listener is a huge key to being a good communicator. Will you all agree on everything? of course not, but listening to EACH OTHER is a great way to find a compromise to make each other happy. So Listen! Listen! LISTEN!
- Show affection: Physical touch, such as holding hands, hugging, or kissing, can help strengthen the emotional bond between partners. Physical connection is always great, especially if you know that is their love language. Touch can be a reassurance that “I see you and I love you,” or “It’s gonna be ok.” Physical touch is so much more than being sexual, truly gives many a sign of comfort.
- Be flexible: Being flexible and willing to compromise can help prevent conflicts and promote a more harmonious relationship. Being flexible is always needed because you’re not in a relationship with yourself. Meaning that you may have to adjust sometimes for your liking, but also for your spouse. Learning to compromise can save you a lot of headache and have more time loving each other.
- TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF!: Taking care of your physical and emotional well-being can improve your overall mood and make you a better partner. Marriage can have you thinking about the other so much that you can you forget to take care of the person that has been there since day one… YOU! Sometimes our attitudes are simply off because we haven’t taken time for us. This doesn’t mean you need to go out with friends, but it can be you taking some time to enjoy a hobby, or some self-care. But it can be just having some fun with friends as well.
- Seek help when needed: If there are issues in the relationship that cannot be resolved on your own, seeking help from a therapist or counselor can provide valuable guidance and support. Also, don’t let this be the LAST resort for your marriage, because at that point it’s most times too late. But if you see that yall may not be connecting as usual, try a session of couple’s therapy to see if it can get you all back to having a balance.
Also here are some pictures from my wife and I 10 year anniversary photoshoot we did in October 2022. ENJOY!