Does Marriage Change Anything?

How has marriage changed your relationship? I was kind of surprised at how many times I was asked this question after our wedding. I hadn’t actually thought about it before. Was I expecting anything to change? Was Joel? Was something supposed to change? I know every relationship and every marriage is different. But to be honest.. YES, our relationship has changed.

But for the better.

I honestly wasn’t expecting anything to be different. And I guess the actual dynamics of our relationship haven’t changed, but truthfully, the love I feel for him now – it’s completely different than anything I felt for him before. Sometimes I’m just stunned to think that someone could love me enough to vow to spend forever with me. I love knowing that I have this person in my life that promised me and promised our family and friends that he would be there through thick and thin.

Yes, yes, I know. People get divorced. And both of us have experienced our fair share of failed and dysfunctional relationships in our families and in our own lives. But maybe that’s a GOOD thing for us. We’ve seen what we don’t want to do. We’ve seen what doesn’t work. We’ve seen what causes a relationship to fall apart. We’ve even had our own relationship fall apart before. But we were together for almost 6 years before getting married. We made sure we were ready to take that big step. We take our marriage seriously and I think we both do a pretty good job at making it successful so far. 🙂

Joel and I have actually had this conversation before. He mentioned this story one time and it still makes me think. He said the one day at work (before we got married) he was talking with his male coworkers and they were all saying how their wives forbid them from doing certain things – going to bars with their friends, riding a motorcycle, playing video games, etc, etc. They all talked about their “ball and chain” and they were warning Joel to be prepared for his life to change dramatically after marriage. And then we got married. And nothing changed. I never told him he couldn’t do those things before, so why would I start doing that now?

Now I’m definitely not an expert on marriage – we’ve only been married for less than a year and half! But I like to think I’m doing a pretty good job so far. So here’s my tips for you, dear readers.

1. Learn to trust – A relationship will not work if there’s no trust. It just won’t.

2. Don’t try to change him (too much) – Some things you can change, and some you just can’t. Joel will always play video games. It’s who he is. But putting glasses in the dishwasher instead of on the counter? I’m working on it.

3. Be affectionate and passionate – Hug him. Kiss him. Tell him you love him. Tell him how lucky you are to have him. Thank him. Men like to be praised just as much as women do!

4. Flirt with him – Yes, I know you’re already married. But flirt with him.

5. Find common interests – Joel and I don’t have much in common, but we both love a super scary horror movie/show. Ghosts or zombies? Yes please!

6. Just have fun – I don’t believe that marriage should be work. I think laughing and being goofy with each other is one of the easiest ways to have a successful relationship. Laughter fixes almost anything, seriously.

Now don’t judge – I truthfully didn’t spend a ton of time on this. I just came up with the first few things that came to my mind. Marriage is a work in progress. Every relationship is different. Things that work for one couple don’t always work for another couple. But just have fun and go from there.

What’s the best relationship advice you ever received?

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