Couple time is often at the bottom of our lists, but it doesn't have to be.
My husband and I have been married for (almost) five years. We've been together for more than seven. I'd say that we're pretty close, and that the state of our union is solid. We love each other, we're committed, and we even like each other after all this time.
But if I'm being honest, we're showing the wear and tear of busy lives. We have three young children. My husband works hard as our primary breadwinner, and when I'm not focused on the children, I'm busy writing or doing laundry. (Always. Doing. Laundry.) I know this isn't unusual, but sometimes we just don't have time to talk. At night, once the children are in bed and the house is finally quiet, we often don't have enough energy to do more than just collapse on adjoining couches and watch television together. Even generating conversation topics at that point of the night requires too much energy.
Please tell me this sounds familiar.
I've read articles that suggest board games at this point are good for bonding. I love playing games, but honestly, after a long day with three small children, a game of Uno would probably result in more marital disputes than bonding. But when I had the opportunity to try out Tokii, a website that features hundreds of relationship quizzes, I figured that that may be just the right speed.
Throughout the day, at my leisure, I logged into the free website and took quizzes. I zoomed right in on the ones tackling meaty relationship topics, interested to see what they revealed about my marriage. Even the goofy ones—those based on pop culture or "The History Of St. Patrick's Day," for example—turned out to be kind of fun, and despite me thinking I knew our marriage inside and out, the relationship quizzes ended up being enlightening.
Scott, my husband, my man, my baby daddy, the love of my life, etc., got an invitation every time I took a quiz. He was able to take them as his schedule allowed, which was sporadic.
Taking the quizzes allowed for an element of competition, and in a healthy relationship, I think a good dose of smack talking can be fun. After entering my response to a question, I had the chance to predict Scott's answer (and vice versa). Whoever guessed the most correctly "won," giving the "winner" total "Boo-ya" rights in our household.
At first I was a little annoyed that Tokii didn't send us some kind of an assessment based on our quiz results. I was hoping for something like, "Congratulations! You and Scott are equally committed to your marriage, although he needs to contribute more to the laundry!" or even "You aren't adequately prepared for a zombie apolocalypse. Store more water." (Sorry, we've been watching Doomsday Preppers.)
But they didn't. We had to look at our completed quizzes (stored under our profiles and easy to access) and review our results. While this initially annoyed me, it ended up being one of my favorite things about my Tokii experience. Because when you're staring at your response to a question, your partner's response, and what you each expected to answer? You can't help but want to talk about the results.
For example, Scott has told me numerous times that he's never getting married again, even if I drop dead of a heart attack tomorrow. (Knock on wood…) He tells me I'm the love of his life. (Yep, often. I'm a lucky girl.) So when Tokii asked if our partner would want us to get remarried should anything happen to us, I knew right away that the answer was "No way."
Except that wasn't Scott's response. He answered that he would want me to get remarried, because life's too long to be lonely.
I accused him of lying in the quiz (jokingly), but we ended up having a sweet conversation about what would happen if anything tragic ever happened to the other. He told me that while he couldn't imagine his life with anyone but me, he would never want me to go through life alone.
I married Scott because I knew what a deep-down wonderful guy he is (and because I love him more than chocolate peanut butter cups), but the selflessness of this answer knocked my socks off. In the day-to-day grind of schedules and laundry (always the damn laundry), sometimes I forget how deep our commitment is to each other. It's easy to take it for granted.
Tokii encouraged us to have some conversations that not only reminded me of how much I love my husband, they reminded me of why. Which is why, despite my husband's sweet concern for what would happen to me (despite his life insurance policy!)—if he were to die young, I don't think I'd ever be able to remarry, no matter if he's okay with it or not.
He just set the bar too high. And sometimes, in the midst of the beautiful chaos of our lives, I need to stop and remember that.
Have you taken any of the Tokii quizzes yet? Did it reveal anything interesting about your relationship, or remind you of something you'd put in the back of your mind? Take one now—it's free to join and takes just a minute to sign up.