You may know couples whose divorce comes as a shock to others; they were seemingly happily married, but in reality were living separate lives. Once children leave the house, a couple who has not nurtured their relationship over the years will find themselves seriously contemplating if they should stay together. The key component to divorce proofing your marriage is staying emotionally connected on a daily basis. As a couple, it is vital to make a commitment to each other to prioritize quality time without distractions from children and other life demands. It is time worth investing in each other so you can grow and develop throughout your marriage and not reach a point where you and your spouse do not understand each other.
Numerous emotional and physical affairs begin because a couple has neglected each other and one partner seeks validation from someone outside their marriage because they have become so depleted. Beside career demands, the number one reason why couples drift apart occurs when children and their needs are placed front and center. Here are my suggesions on how you can keep your marriage connected and increase that mutual fulfillment.
How Can You Prevent Children's Needs From Overtaking The Relationship Connection?
- Schedule Regular Date Nights: Whether it is once a week or once a month, it is important to have this quality time to look forward to. I encourage couples to make the date mutually enjoyable, trying different venues to spend time together. One suggestion is to rediscover something you did before you married and relive those moments.
- Establish Daily Couple Time: Date nights are not enough to keep an emotionally healthy connection. A couple needs daily quality time; an extra 20 or 30 minutes first thing in the morning or after the kids are off to bed. The temptation is to use any extra time to catch up on household chores and other things on the to-do list. The most valuable item on that long list is making sure you both feel loved, needed and cherished.
- Participate In Shared Adult Activities: Not everything you do as a couple should revolve around the children. Balance is key in an emotionally connected marriage and you need time to have adult conversations without distractions.
How Can A Couple Increase Marriage Longevity?
- Prioritize The Relationship: Commit to each other that the marriage is the center of the family, not the demands and needs of the children. Our society favors a kids-first mentality, however the best gift you can give your kids is to model how loving couples behave toward one another. When it is their time to choose a spouse, they will gravitate toward someone likeminded.
- Tangibly Show Mutual Love: The words are not enough: each spouse needs to show love in the manner the other person wants to receive love. Words and actions will provide the nurturance you both seek and brings mutual fulfillment and satisfaction.
- Share Individual Life Goals: Quality time means you share your dreams and goals as an individual and what you both envision as a couple. Spiritually, it is vital to grow in your faith and sharing those milestones with one another solidifies the solid foundation of your marriage.
- Address Conflicts And Challenges Quickly: Open lines of communication means you listen and respond accordingly to each other without feeling guilty. Rationalizing away concerns is the easiest path for avoiding conflict, but eventually leads to resentment and bitterness. The longer you allow disagreements to be openly unresolved, the more likely you are to retreat from one another.
Marriage is a blessing which can lead to an ever evolving, spiritually growing, mutually satisfying and long lasting connection. There is no reason to drift apart when you make a vow to nurture the relationship daily.
More advice for couples on YourTango: