We’ve all seen it. Maybe we’ve even experienced it: two people who are single meet, and each person is certain they have found The One. The special person they’ve been waiting for all their life. Now, whenever they are away from each other they’re miserable, and when they are together, they beam with so much happiness that they almost peel the wall paper off the walls. When asked how they knew they had found Mr. or Mrs. Right, these giddy-with-love people reply, “We were like two puzzle pieces that just fit together perfectly”.
Of course the answer isn’t always worded exactly like that, but usually pretty close. So, of course, they take the next step: they get married. Well, it seems like the natural thing to do, doesn’t it? When you love each other that much, you might as well join together. Then you can face life, and whatever it may bring, together. As a loving team, you can share your existence on this earth. How exciting to know you can look into the other person’s eyes and hear their voice speak your name for as long as you live.
At least, that’s how marriage is supposed to work.
But, for some reason, as soon as the vows of commitment are spoken, and rings are placed on fingers, relationships change. And usually not for the better.
What is it about “getting hitched” that causes so many couples to crash and burn? And is there any way to avoid the major pitfalls which occur in so many marriages?
Well, to answer the first question…
For many people getting “hitched” is an apt description of how they view marriage. For these folks, the relationship of a married couple is a hitching together. But it’s like oxen who are pulling while yoked together in a wooden stock: there seems to be no elasticity for either person to move apart from their spouse. This leaves many wives and husbands feeling like they have no room to breathe and very little self identity. They can even begin to feel invisible.
One of the best ways to keep the feeling we had for our spouse alive is to take care of our own emotional self. A car won’t run if it doesn’t have gas in the tank. In the same way, we each need to stay filled up emotionally. Then we can give love unconditionally to the person we married.
We also must take a look at the other person with freshly opened eyes once in awhile. Try this: pretend you and your spouse are Adam and Eve, the first people ever to exist. Many of the things they do which annoy you will stop bothering you, because you wil realize that since Adam and Eve had no one to compare each other to, they were able to be happy with each other.
Finally, don’t be afraid of faith. Believing in God isn’t a crime, and a strong faith has helpped a lot of people get through difficult times.
So there you have it, if you want merely a mediocre marriage, don’t bother with any of this stuff, but if you want a really good marriage, try using these tips. You might find they work great as a springboard to even more ways to make your marriage relationship work. And you’ll discover another great surprise: you will find that it was worth the effort.