In all the preparation for the wedding and the honeymoon, it’s very easy to lose sight of the big picture. On our trip to the mountains last month, I asked my mom for tips for marriage. My parents are celebrating their 30th wedding anniversary this year. Though my parents have never been overly affectionate, which probably explains my aversion to P.D.A. (Public Displays of Affection), there has never been a doubt in my mind that my parents truly love one another and see each other as their partner in all things.
In raising all of us kids, in all our differences, and through all that has happened in their lives, it takes a true partnership to do it as well as they have! This advice for newlyweds are good guidelines for T and I as we begin our life together as partners in crime!
Everyday Advice for Newlyweds
GIVE 60% :: Always give more than just half. At various times each of you will be able to give more and need more. If you’re always giving a little extra, those ebbs and flows will be more seamless.
DO MOST THINGS TOGETHER :: Outside of work, try to do most things together. Sharing new experiences and creating traditions are helpful and meaningful in the long run. For my dad who has few words because of a massive stroke, being able to talk about memories is important. He and my mom share memories before and since his stroke making conversations easier and more meaningful. Recalling vacations, meals, and experiences continue to bond my parents and our family.
BE WILLING TO TRY NEW THINGS :: Your partner may have interests different than yours, but don’t let that get in the way. Each of you should try new things with your partner. This can include food, hobbies, interests, travel, culture, or even new ventures in business and different kinds of advice. Don’t let what you know hold you back.
TELL YOUR PARTNER WHEN HE/SHE LOOKS GOOD :: You are each other’s ego-booster and #1 fan, so let them know when you’re liking the way they look! It’ll be good for both of you.
TRY TO GO TO BED AT THE SAME TIME :: Even if you aren’t falling asleep at the same time, going to bed at the same time helps your schedules align which makes each day easier to plan together.
HAVE ONE MEAL TOGETHER PER DAY :: Along the same lines as going to bed at the same time, eating together creates similar schedules, but it also serves as a guaranteed time to catch up. Do this as couples and as families.
Big Picture Advice for Newlyweds
HAVE TOLERANCE FOR EACH OTHER’S BELIEFS :: Though you may have many things in common, be tolerant of difference. Whether it’s religion, politics, or other core values, appreciate your partner and accept differences. Constantly ignoring or trying to change one another’s beliefs leads to confrontation that won’t lead anywhere positive.
HAVE PATIENCE IN ALL THINGS :: Expectations and the need for speed create tension. Patience leads to a calmer home and therefore a smoother relationship.
photography by Karen Ard