Marriage isn’t quite the fairy tale many romance novels and movies make it out to be. Love isn’t always enough to keep two people together; such a commitment requires a lot of respect, communication, and teamwork to last.
One couple says focusing on all three, particularly the latter, has only served to strengthen their marital bond. Ryan Stephens and his wife Alaina have been married almost six years and credit their rock-solid relationship to acting as teammates more than soulmates.
The duo have come to understand that applying realistic guidelines to their marriage is the perfect recipe for success. As such, they’ve hammered out simple yet crucial ways to always have each other’s back.
“1. No one should ever hear anything bad about your spouse from you.
It’s one thing to joke with your friends and tell them about how your spouse does the dishes so slowly you might as well just do them yourself. It’s another thing to demean your spouse’s character by discussing details of issues in your relationship such as money or disciplining your child. Know the difference and always discuss the latter with your spouse and no one else.
2. Over communicate.
You cannot read each other’s minds. Never assume the other person knows what you meant. Give each other the benefit of the doubt when miscommunications happen. Double check if necessary.
3. Try new things together.
Even if one of you is typically more adventurous than the other, have fun with it. Trying new things gets an individual out of their comfort zone and is often easier as a couple, allowing you both to grow stronger together.
4. Be each other’s champion. Celebrate wins and encourage each other.
Bring home champagne after a promotion at work, back each other up when engaging in that battle with your heathen toddler, work out together, etc. Never cut the other person down when they are struggling.
5. Be grateful for each other’s contributions.
Whether it be money, time, chores, childcare, or anything else, no one contribution is greater than another. And don’t keep score. If you truly value each other’s input, then the scorecard shouldn’t (and doesn’t) matter.
6. Trust and respect each other. Especially in front of others, including your children.
If you do not respect your spouse in front of other people, why should those people respect your spouse? Enough said.”
These are words every couple should live by, married or not! Thanks for sharing your wisdom, Alaina and Ryan. It’s clear you’re the perfect match for each other.
Be sure to share these important rules with all the couples in your life.
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