We’ve asked out readers what the best piece of marriage advice they ever received or had learned the hard way was. We’ve compiled the advice that we thought was the best, from people who have just undergone divorce to people who have been together 60 years. Read, and take this advice to heart!
1) Research consistently shows that touching more creates a stronger bond by releasing oxytocin. Hold hands, rub shoulders, hug, kiss, give high-fives or even fist-bumps or bottom pats. When you give a quick hug or kiss, try to lengthen it to at least 5 or 10 seconds for more effective results!
2) Learn how to agree to disagree. No two people agree on everything, and that’s okay, but it’s important to be okay with each other’s differences.
3) When you go to bed at night, it doesn’t matter how angry or sad you are, you don’t have to say anything but you always, always touch toes. Just a little reminder that I’m here and I still love you no matter what.
4) Do not hold grudges. Forget, forgive and remember how you fell in love in the first place.
5) I let him be the boss for the first 50 years, now I get the next 50. It’s even.
6) You give and you give and you give.
7) Two things: Find your best friend and marry them. And weekend mornings are made for hours of talking and laughing over coffee.
8) Don’t fight over money because there is never enough to go around anyway.
9) If I am unhappy with my husband about something, it stands to reason there are things about me he is unhappy about. We need to work together.
10) For women: Do not expect your husband to change after marriage. For men: Do not expect your wife to not change.
11) The best marriage advice I received was from my grandmother: Marriage is not always 50/50. Some days you will wake up and may have to give 90% and your spouse will give 10%. Other days you may wake up and give 25% and your husband will have to put in the 75%.
12) A successful marriage requires falling in love many times, always with the same person.
13) Hugs are sacred.
14) Not every fight is the Big One. Don’t go to the mats on everything.
15) Don’t ever use the “D” word unless you mean it.
16) Revenge isn’t a dish best served cold. It’s a dish best not served at all.
17) One woman told me that keeping a marriage sexy isn’t about big gestures like expensive gifts or trips–its daily romance. That means eating a pizza together on the couch, or sitting on the couch stroking your wife’s hair. Couch love, basically.
18) One thing I could trace throughout all the failed marriages was complacency. The eternity that’s implied when you wed can lead you to feel like you don’t have to try anymore. One guy said you have to re-earn your partner’s love every year. Unconditional love is for your children.”
19) Every day, for 10 minutes, the couple should talk alone about something other than work, the family and children, the household, the relationship. No problems. No scheduling. No logistics.
20) Never let your ego be a part of the relationship, hug and kiss more than once a day, smile and say “hi” every-time you see each other or pass each other in the house, have fun together, laugh, play games, tease, act like kids together, laugh A LOT with each other and always respect your partner as a human being.
21) Anger almost always comes from hurt feelings. You most likely did not mean to hurt your spouse’s feelings so really there is not anything to fight about. (Or the fight is from grumpiness, just let them vent and get over it, you will appreciate the same when you are being grumpy.)
22) Let your spouse be the person they are. Don’t let your expectations ruin things. They are who they are, and if you married them, you love them for who they are.
23) Protect your own heart. Just as you committed to being the protector of her heart, you must guard your own with the same vigilance. Love yourself fully, love the world openly, but there is a special place in your heart where no one must enter except for your wife. Keep that space always ready to receive her and invite her in, and refuse to let anyone or anything else enter there.
24) Take full accountability for your own emotions: It’s not your wife’s job to make you happy, and she can’t make you sad. You are responsible for finding your own happiness, and through that your joy will spill over into your relationship and your love.
25) Be willing to take her sexually, to carry her away in the power of your masculine presence, to consume her and devour her with your strength, and to penetrate her to the deepest levels of her soul. Let her melt into her feminine softness as she knows she can trust you fully.
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