10 Things I've Learned In 36 Years Of Marriage

By

10 Things I've Learned In 36 Years Of Marriage [EXPERT]
Life lessons from a long, loving marriage.

My wife and I recently celebrated our 36th wedding anniversary. As I reflected on this, I decided to share my list of the top 10 things I have learned in 36 years, in no particular order.

1. We've grown up together. We all bring our unfinished business with us into marriage and it's these developmental issues that create the most problems. In our case we got married young and that makes it even more obvious and important to grow up. When we have been honest with ourselves and worked on our own maturity, our relationship has grown. Rediscovering Love

 

2. We've changed with life stages. Related to growing up is recognizing the need to adapt to different life stages. Each stage of life brings particular gifts and challenges to marriage. Being aware of this and making adjustments has been critical. Now as empty-nesters we are rediscovering certain freedoms while also dealing with getting older. It never stops.

3. Life comes in cycles. Marriage is like a rose bush. It contains both beautiful flowers and thorns. Sometimes the flowers bloom and it is fragrant and wonderful. Sometimes the blooms fall off and all you see is the thorns. If you nurture the plant and keep it healthy, you can count on the blooms returning. Learn to accept it all with patience. 

4. Trust follows behavior. Most people agree that trust is critical to a healthy relationship. The only way to earn or re-establish trust is through consistent loving and honorable behavior. Words become meaningless if not supported by your behavior. How Laughter Can Save Your Marriage

5. Values hold us together. My wife and I are different in personalities, motivations, and interests. What has been a foundation for our marriage is our shared values and priorities. It is vital to keep values in mind and talk about what is important to both of you at each stage of life.

6. It isn't always easy to tell the truth. Telling your partner the truth can be difficult, especially if you haven't learned to be honest with yourself and in touch with your feelings and desires. We may be afraid of our partner's reactions or of exposing something we prefer to hide. The trick is speaking the truth in a spirit of love and owning responsibility for your own thoughts and feelings.

7. Know and accept your partner. We all view life through our own perspective and assume it is the best or only way. Things that make my wife feel loved and cared about are not always the same for me. Marriage Meditation: Help Each Other Get Stronger

What I am sensitive to is also different than what she is sensitive to. How she likes to do certain things is different than my way. I have wasted too much energy trying to change rather than accept her, and this only makes the patterns of reactions stronger. People do not need to be fixed, only loved and affirmed.

This article was originally published at . Reprinted with permission.
Article contributed by
Advanced Member

Coach Tom King

Author

Tom King

Speak the Truth in Love

www.reimaginemarriage.com - Home Study Course

Check out my new book: Date Night Conversations

My website

 

Location: St. Paul, MN
Credentials: LICSW, Med, MSW
Specialties: Couples/Marital Issues, Career
Other Articles/News by Coach Tom King:

Date Nights Improve Communication and Sexual Satisfaction

By

As Valentine’s Day approaches couples around the world began thinking more about setting up the perfect romantic date.  Flowers, chocolates, Jewelry, dinner, theatre, or a bed and breakfast all are traditional ingredients of great dates.  Others prefer much more simple and low key options like taking a hike together or sharing a cup of ... Read more

A Day of Peace

By

On December 25, 1914 the guns of British and German soldiers fell silent, and soldiers sang carols in No Man's Land.  The Christmas truce during WWI happened spontaneously as soldiers on both sides heard their enemies singing carols.  A few brave men climbed out their trenches to exchange Christmas greetings and then began to exchange food, sing ... Read more

The Truth About The Five Love Languages

By

Love languages is a framework made popular by Dr. Gary Chapman in his book The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts. The basic premise is that what feels like love and caring behavior to me may not communicate love and caring to you. We all have a variety of love languages but we need to understand our differences and preferences and use that ... Read more

See More

 
Latest Expert Videos
ASK YOURTANGO MORE QUESTIONS
Must-see Videos
SEE MORE VIDEOS
Most Popular