My husband and I have been together for a very long time (together for fifteen and married for almost nine). Although we are extremely blessed to be living in a happy marriage, I often reminisce on earlier days by taking a trip down memory lane.
As I sat down to think about the lessons I learned as I grew up in my own marriage, I thought about all of the advice I’ve learned along the way, ones that I would most definitely pass on to my younger self.
1. It is not a magic wand.
Marriage will not solve any unresolved issues you had prior to getting married. Those little things that get on your nerves before marriage that you never say anything about, will only escalate. They don’t magically disappear. So start expressing yourself openly and honestly, but most importantly, lovingly. Whatever issues you have, they can be resolved with love and communication, so use them simultaneously.
2. All marriages were not created equal.
It is not a one-size fits all kinda deal. Take marriage advice from those who are wiser and more experienced (and especially those who are happy). But don’t try to mirror everything you see, exactly as you see it. Take the great advice and examples, and adjust them to fit your unique marriage.
3. Your selfish days are over (or at least, they ought to be).
The “Team of Me” will not last in marriage. Marriage is give and take and if you only focus on taking, you will put your marriage in a bad situation. Stop being spoiled, and learn to suck it up and move on, especially when you know you’re in the wrong.
4. Having kids changes things.
Before you have kids, you can come and go as you please and not think twice about it. You can frequent your favorite carry-out and sleep in until your heart’s content. Having kids after marriage is the most rewarding blessing. But just be prepared that things will change…for the better. Kids make you grow up a bit and put your big girl panties on. Suddenly, you no longer care about how long you used to sleep or hang out before kids.
What marriage lessons would you tell your younger self?