It’s easy to be happy in your relationship when everything is going well. But the true test of a marriage is about sticking together when things are really shitty.
There’s always going to be someone that you’re convinced is happier or more financially stable or more in love with their partner than you are with yours. But worrying about them will do nothing for you. And besides, you have no idea what’s going on behind the scenes. Forget about them and worry about working on your own relationship, every single day.
Pick the person you want to take on a mortgage with, not the person you want to throw a wedding with.
Marry someone for their heart and their soul, because at some point, their looks are going to change.
Fighting is a healthy and necessary part of any relationship. But there’s a difference between communicating with your partner when they’re upsetting you, and simply nagging them day in and day out.
You’re never too old to ask someone for advice when you need it.
Money is really convenient. But it’s never the answer to a happy, successful relationship.
If you find yourself yelling at your partner or picking a fight for no apparent reason, stop and reflect on what’s currently going on in your life. Chances are, you’re projecting onto them your worry about something that has nothing to do with them. You’ll be a lot better off if you condition yourself to talk to them when you’re stressed about something, instead of just burying them under your frustration.
Sometimes the most meaningful gifts are the ones that don’t cost anything at all.
There are going to be a lot of things you don’t want to do – moving, financial sacrifices, spending holidays with their family instead of yours, etc. But your slight discomfort is a worthwhile price to pay for a strong, solid marriage.
When you feel you are ready to get married, go into it not with the mindset of I hope this works but with the mindset of I’m going to do everything in my power to make this work, because divorce is not an option.
There are always going to be certain circumstances where divorce really is the only option. But you should absolutely begin your marriage with the mindset that divorce is only an option after you’ve made ever other attempt you can think of to make your marriage work.
There’s nothing wrong with a beautiful engagement ring. But it’s important to remember that the size of a ring is not directly correlational to the happiness within a marriage.
Listen to the stories of elderly people, both those who have been married for 40, 50, or 60+ years, and those who could not make their marriage work. They are filled with more wisdom and life experience than you could ever imagine, and chances are they will say at least one helpful thing that will really stick with you.
Demand respect from your partner, and expect them to demand respect from you.
Don’t depend on your partner for your happiness. You have to find that within yourself. But that doesn’t mean that they can’t make you incredibly happy – it just means that they can’t be the foundation on which you build your entire life.
When you’re wrong, admit it.
Go grocery shopping together every once in a while. It’s surprisingly fun.
Never miss an opportunity to let them know how much you appreciate them.
Slow down and have a glass of wine with them every once in a while. The two of you are going to change constantly throughout your marriage, so it’s important that you’re always getting to know each other.
Accept from the start that neither one of you is perfect, and that neither one of you will ever be perfect.
Celebrating anniversaries doesn’t always have to be over-the-top. Sometimes, a heartfelt, handwritten card says everything.
Have a life outside of your partner, but remember to put them above all else.
Make peace with the fact that sometimes, you’re just going to drive each other up the wall, and that’s okay.
Don’t tune them out, even when you really, really want to. Indifference in a marriage can be much more dangerous than anger or hatred.
Hold hands in the car. It’s a simple way to consistently feel connected.
Don’t ignore the moments when you’re feeling hurt or resentful. Lay your emotions out on the table, make sure your partner understands how you’re feeling. Talk about it, and then let it go.
Sometimes, you might feel lonely in your marriage. It happens. That doesn’t mean you should give up. It just means you have to work that much harder to get back to a place where you want to be.
Laughter will always make things a little bit better. Make each other laugh. Watch movies that make each other laugh. Write notes on the bathroom mirror that make each other laugh. Do whatever you can to bring a smile to one another’s faces. Even if it’s just for a moment.
Above all else, think of yourself as a team.