There are lots of ways to have a happy marriage but the best piece of advice I give is ONLY marry your best friend.
Arguments don’t have to be long drawn out dramas of screaming and slamming doors. They are disagreements that need to be worked out.
A) Don’t nitpick but don’t let things go.
If something bothers tell your spouse… they married you but the license doesn’t bestow magical mind reading powers onto them. Deal with it don’t bury it. Don’t like to confront… that’s why you address each issue. It’s easier to talk about something bite size before a mountain of resentment and anger builds up.
B) Do so with love.
During the discussion say I love you… not to distract your partner but to remind you BOTH you share love with one another. Talk to them with the same respect you’d speak to your ‘best’ friend.
C) Working through disagreements on small things you learn ways to deal with them so when something larger comes along you have the experience and expertise to know it’s not the end of the world. The two of you will work through it. (Yes WORK… marriage requires both parties to work)
D) Be honest but not purposefully hurtful. If you’re too angry, upset or hurt call for RADIO SILENCE. It’s a great way to get a time out. I utilize it when I'm too upset to hear or when I know my love is too upset and neither of us should be talking. Silence is better than saying hurtful things out of anger. Radio Silence = HUSH up NOW. (Then once you have space back to working out the issue)
2) Don’t be a Martyr
Allowing your spouse everything and taking nothing for yourself is not healthy. Employ the airline philosophy of life: Put your air mask on before helping others with theirs… Take care of your own needs so you’re able to contribute to the partnership. If you’ve given everything and become an empty husk with nothing to give>>> how is that helping the team?
3) Play For The Same Team
What are your goals as a couple? What are your goals as an individual?
Saving up for house
Saving up for retirement
Get your degrees
Growing your own vegetables
As a primary member of your team you should drive in the direction of your team goals and you should help further your spouse’s goal as well (& of course should be assisting you in accomplishing your dreams as well).
Goals change and evolve over time. Talk once in a while to ensure you're both still focused on the dreams. If not make the needed adjustments.
This doesn’t mean you give up on your individual goals but you make compromises to meet the priorities you have as a couple while you continue working on your personal goals. It shouldn’t be one or the other… though there are times one or the other of you might have to give more to make something happen for the good of the team (as will your other team mate).
Marry Your Best Friend
Marry someone who loves and accepts you for you. Someone who can make you laugh. Couple with someone who will work with you on your couple as well as your personal goals. Find someone you can trust to take care of you if the need arises and be willing to take care of them.
Marry someone who you are able to put their happiness in front of your own and they happily do the same for you.
Marriage is not heteronormative… though until recently it’s only been between a male and a female (In the past people just assumed married people were heterosexual… not always the case so let’s drop the label and the expectation.). Each couple needs to set the boundaries of their relationship is and goals they want to focus on.
There’s many ways and suggestions to make a happy marriage. It’s up to each of us on, off, over and under the rainbow makes of marriage what you want it to be. It’s up to you to define what your marriage is and what equates to success. May you find a best friend to enrich the quality of your life.
Wishing you love, happiness and romance always.