The young marriage
You don’t get 25 years of marriage for nothing. Sometimes the price is very high. But it is always worth it.In the first part of this series I discussed the challenges of the first years.
Now you’re married. But even on your honeymoon, new difficulties may arise if you’ve really waited with sex until marriage. However, new challenges come with the first child. The same is true if the new job demands a lot from you and/or your partner.
Then the second child, maybe a third or fourth…
One can assume that the emotional curve moves downwards again and again. This diagram is only to be understood as an example. It depends on your life circumstances.
After the birth of the children, it is often difficult for the spouses to find the new role.
Women sometimes find it difficult to combine the role of being a mum and a lover. The body changes, the time organization, the power reserves, the attention, etc. This often makes the man feel neglected. Even new jobs often lead to difficulties. If the work lasts into the evening or the partner cannot switch off from the problems of the company. When the mobile phone is stand-by line to the boss even on weekends or holidays.
Relationship killer No. 1: Having no time for the relationship
Now everyone is tearing at the two of them. Children need attention. There’s seldom rest at night. You never have time to talk, the kids are always there. In the evening you’re too tired, just dragging yourself in front of the TV. The job wants undivided energy, your full concentration and creativity. Grandparents want to visit the family.
But the relationship needs time for two.
Take the kids to the grandparents. One afternoon, one evening and as soon as possible a whole weekend.
Have a “marriage evening” a week: Once a week go to a restaurant together. Staying at home is only possible if the children sleep through or are with their grandparents.
Look through your diary and pick out 3 to 4 weekends per year where you can leave the kids with friends or grandmothers and take a little marriage holiday. You can only stay at home if you keep your hands off housework, gardening and office work!
Relationship killer No. 2: Only spontaneous communication
The more complex your life gets, the more you should plan for the really important things. In time management there are the 4 areas of tasks, important and loud, important and quiet, unimportant and loud and unimportant and quiet.
The higher the urgency of a matter, the louder it “screams”. Crises cry out, they need immediate action. But the cell phone “screams” too, it seems you have to check it out right now.
The communication between man and woman does not cry out. It seems a quiet problem, until it is too late.
Don’t just let the conversations with your spouse take place by the way. For example, at the dining table in the presence of the children. Turn off the TV and open a bottle of wine in the evening, when the kids are sleeping.
Relationship killer No. 3: You don’t talk about sex
Talk about what your expectations are regarding your sexuality. From my experience of many years coaching married couples most people have different expectations to this topic. In most cases (exceptions included) men want more intimacy than women. There are men for whom 4 to 5 times a week represents a minimum level of satisfaction of needs, for other men once a week is okay. With women, you can usually cut that in half. Most women I know are already at their upper limit in sexual intercourse once a week.
Disappointment is inevitable!
You need to talk about your sexual expectations! Since the wishes usually diverge among the spouses, you must try to find a good compromise that is acceptable to both parties.
Relationship killer No. 4: I know that my partner feels loved
Ask him, especially when things are not going so well. What does your partner need? Check out the five love languages.
(Book recommendation: Gary Chapman: The 5 love languages)
This is about people speaking different love languages. Some need quality time above all, others tenderness, others feel especially loved when they are helped, others when they get affirmation and the last group when they receive a gift. One of these love languages is your primary love language, even if of course you need all areas. The problem is your partner may speak another primary language. Maybe he thinks if he helps you a lot in the house, he’ll show his love. You may not be interested in this help. You need concentrated attention, .
None of that’s a problem if you know each other’s love languages. Read the book together or check the blog The right way to love and find out what the other one needs.
Relationship killer No. 5: flirting allowed
Don’t flirt with coworkers or other people. It always brings a gap between you two. First it seems harmless, but then the desire for romance or recognition becomes ever greater. Avoid too personal cooperation with the opposite sex. Especially business trips, meetings for two, etc. It is also important to stay clean within the friendship relationship with other couples.
Relationship killer No. 6: Lack of reconciliation
One sentence in the Bible says:
In your anger do not sin: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry. (Ephesians 4, 26)
That has always been the guiding principle of our marriage. Fix it. No matter how hard the fight was. If necessary, find time to pronounce, but forgive yourselves at the end. Even if it costs a lot of humility sometimes.