*Note: I originally posted this article a month ago, but thought it would be a great idea to post it again since Valentine’s Day is next week.
I’m super full of joy right now, and I’m feeling totally blessed, Because Carrie and I were married 30 years ago today. I really am not sure how I got so lucky. Carrie is absolutely beautiful, loving, patient, considerate, supportive, hard working. I could fill this page up with adjectives, but I think you get the idea.
I’ve been thinking a lot about our marriage the past few days. How is it we have been happily married for so long when nearly half of all marriages end in divorce? Somehow I have managed to come up with four reasons as to why we have managed to maintain matrimonial bliss for so long. I want to share them with you because they might be a benefit to you and because I care about each and every one of you. I want you to experience the same joy that we have.
But first let me be clear. I am not some sort of marriage expert or love guru. Carrie and I have been lucky enough to stumble into some healthy behaviors and traits that have benefited our marriage.
We Are Best Friends
Carrie and I genuinely think of each other as best friends. If I could spend every waking minute with her, I would. No, really! We love being together in each other’s company and have never found anything or anyone more interesting than each other. Heck! We even worked together for five years prior to my becoming a stay at home dad. We drove to work together, shared an office together and we even combined our classes at times so that we could teach together. Now that we are apart most of the day, I miss her. I can’t wait for her to get home.
We Waited To Start Our Family
This is one of those things we stumbled into. We actually didn’t plan on having kids at first, so when we actually did start our family we had been together for 16 years. By then, we were really ready for it. Our relationship was already well established and our bond was strong enough to withstand the challenges and stresses of parenting. I would say that the important lesson we learned is that you need to build a solid foundation before you erect the walls.
Communication And Humor
Communication being key to a good marriage is a no brainer, but do most couples really excel at it? I would say that this is the most common complaint among married couples. Carrie and I work at this skill and while I really need to improve, Carrie is awesome at it. The key here is this: you have to take a genuine interest in what your spouse has to say, and it doesn’t hurt to have a little humor. Carrie has a terrific sense of humor and we have always been able to make each other laugh. It has also been helpful that neither of us really takes ourselves too seriously. Good friends can make each other laugh and we laugh together all the time. Laughter really is good medicine. I really go out of my way to make her laugh every day.
Patience and Forgiveness
Two people can not live together for 30 years without the revelation that we are all weird and the more we get to know each other the more we come to realize this. We have learned to embrace these things about each other. I will always talk to the dogs in made up languages and Carrie will always refuse to deal with strangers on the phone and that’s OK.
Carrie and I do have disagreements, sometimes big ones. I have a quick temper and often say things that aren’t so well thought out. We make mistakes and hurt each other with our words, but when we do, we try to give and receive forgiveness as soon as possible. We take Paul’s words in Ephesians 4:26 to heart. which says “Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry” We try to never go to bed with unresolved conflict. This rule has served us well.
Today, thinking about being married for 30 years just gave me a sense of joy and accomplishment. I hope that doesn’t sound vain, because it isn’t meant to. I just really want to share what we have learned over the course of three decades with all of you.
Brian from Daddy Go to Timeout
Because Carrie and I feel so strongly that a good marriage is the key to a thriving family, we developed a seven day challenge for you to try. If you think that your relationship, though good, could use a little kick start, we’d like to offer you the opportunity to try the Seven Days To Your Better Best Friend Challenge. The challenge is simple, fun, and absolutely free. All you have to do is click on the button below, and I will send the workbook to you so that you and your spouse can get started right away. In it, you will find seven daily challenges. Each day you will spend 15-30 minutes discussing a different topic. The goal of the challenge is for you to reteach yourself those communication habits that you had when you were still newlyweds, before the stresses and pressures of work and family gradually began to work their way into your relationship.
Big Giant Bonus!!!
One lucky couple who signs up for the course will also win a $50 Visa card which will be sent in time for you to use on Valentines Day. So hurry up and click that button above and get signed up. Because who doesn’t want to win $50!!!
I hope you decide to take the challenge and then let me know what you think. Your feedback is really important. I will be offering this challenge again in a few months. I need to know if there are any changes you think I need to make to improve the challenge.
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