Time to Invest in Your Marriage
We all know that lifetime marriages don't happen much any more... we are often too busy with life to protect our marriages nowadays.
This is my two cents, based on our church sermon last week... just sharing what Pastor Jeff said and my two cents mixed in.
First, so many don't even choose to marry nowadays. The live together instead, hoping for the best. It's so darn easy to walk away from these living arrangements, no courts, just pack your bags and off you go to the next relationship. Simple.
Each time the relationship doesn't quite work, we lower our expectations for our partner, little by little, year after year. We sacrifice our own values because this just might be "the one", but oops, didn't work out again, and on and on...
A few statistics about living together:
Only 3% actually end up in marriage.
If marriage isn't your intent, good. If it is, think twice.
Of the 3% who do marry, 75% of them end up in divorce. Sad but true...
A few statistics about Marriage:
The odds of a lasting marriage are only .05%. Yikes! Of every 2 marriages, 1 ends in divorce. Yikes #2!
Since this page was based on a sermon, let me tell you that 1 in 1200 church attending marriages will divorce. Isn't it interesting how a little faith on Sunday mornings increases your odds so much? (OK, it's not just Sunday mornings but the thoughts that follow you throughout the week and into your life...)
Enough Stats... just sad.
Consider all the depressed people out there, whether single folks who've tried it over and over with little success OR long time marriages that are simply dead. They live together, but that's about it.
We need to fix our relationships, care about each other, and become happy and fulfilled working together in life.
Long time marriages (heck, even short term marriages) die due to lack of trying. We don't put any work into them, expecting the relationship to carry on by itself. Nothing worth having is quite that simple... life just doesn't work that way.
Men historically are hunters and conquerors... happy that they catch their prey (women), they marry. What happens? They need to hunt more... they seek the new challenge, be it their career, golf game, kids, or another woman.
Women also get caught up in careers or child raising,.. to the disregard of the marriage itself. Yes, the kids are totally important, but so is your marriage.
In Retirement -- Work towards togetherness, it really is possible.
We need to spend time together. Don't let everything else in life gain priority. We should be intentional about our relationships - plan time together, make "date nights", do something that our partner enjoys (even if you don't).
A few marriage tips:
Be transparent. Tell your partner where you are, what you are doing. Be open. Be Honest... if not, there is little trust and I think you know where any relationship is headed without trust.
Over time, the relationship erodes -- lies, untruths, hidden agendas, it's really inevitable. Harsh uncaring words, over time, HURT. The partner no longer wants to feel vulnerable.. and hides emotions inside themselves.
Don't neglect your marriage... sooner or later, you will be sorry you did. Think about it -- the grass is not always greener (it looks greener, but that's through rosy sun glasses).
Consider your friends relationships. If they have many hurts, do it differently with your partner, don't become them. If they have a great long term relationship, hang out with them as couples. Do dinner together. Learn and become more like them.
Surround yourself with good marriages to better yours!
Share yourself 100%. Just "be" in your marriage 100%.
It's not really 50/50... that's not good enough. If you are going to be marriage partners, go "all the way" and be partners 100%. Heck, give 110% to them!
Marriage isn't about one partner dominating the other. It's not about control. It's about a partnership that works towards total respect of one another. Supporting each other strengthens your marriage like crazy.
Find common interests with your partner, and do something to enjoy each others company. Learn to love what your partner enjoys to do. They, in turn, will support your hobby and interests. This gives you something to chat about and something to do together. This doesn't mean you'll enjoy every interest they have, but be generous with your time and find common interests to show some support.
Work together to make the marriage work. Don't waste time making excuses and rationalizing that everything is a-ok because _______ (fill in the blank). If it doesn't feel good, talk about it.
Don't talk badly about your marriage with others -- like at work, for example. There is always someone ready to step up and say: "I understand, I know just what you are going through, often for their own reasons.
Get Spiritual. Over time, God will fill your heart and you'll find peace from within. Marriages can only be strengthened with faith.
Thanks for reading!
Wendy, married 30+ years and counting...
Wait just a minute -- I dated 8 years before we married. How can that be? My math is off somewhere... I can't be THAT old, can I?
This retirement stuff is scary!!