At this time, 10 years ago, I was in the middle of last minute details for our wedding. All those things that seemed important at the time, but that I can’t remember at all right now. I could have really used some practical advice about newlywed life instead of finding cute table decorations for the reception.
Here’s the newlywed advice I wish someone had given me(or maybe they did give it to me and I just didn’t listen….):
- Life is going to change. No matter how much time you spent together before the wedding, even if it seemed like you were always together, there really is a difference when you are living together and you go from “let’s see how this works out” to “this is supposed to last forever.” Some changes are good, some are harder, but it is different.
- Don’t complain about your spouse. Not that I went around bitching about my husband to the world, but I definitely vented. But what I didn’t get back then is that even though my husband can be an asshole sometimes, I’ll forgive and move on, but those stories will stick with the people I tell. And people outside of your marriage are much quicker to say things like “oooh, I wouldn’t put up with that, I’d leave his ass,” rather than really understanding what is going on in your marriage. No marriage needs others judging or suggesting what you should do in your marriage when they’ve only heard a rant on a bad day.
- Marriage takes work. I don’t expect to lose weight by sitting on my ass or increase blog pageviews by ignoring my blog. I can’t think of much in this life that you don’t have to put some work into. Think of your best girlfriend- if you never made time for her, you wouldn’t have much of a friendship, would you? The same goes for marriage. There will be times when it doesn’t feel like much work at all and others when it’s a struggle- but there always needs to be effort and thought put into your marriage.
- Make time for each other(and have sex). You are in this together, so act like it. Especially after kids- make time for date nights, even if they sometimes have to happen on the couch after the kids are in bed because there’s no babysitter to be found. You had a life together before kids- you are still husband and wife, not just a dad and a mom. Having sex is a good way to remind yourselves of that. I still pretty much believe that I shouldn’t say no when it comes to sex and I think my marriage is better for it.
What advice would you give to a newlywed?