Since we are currently under a we-don’t-know-when-life-will-go-back-to-normal schedule, I thought I would do everyone a favor and share a little marriage advice that I have for being in super close quarters 24/7 with your spouse. Because Derrek and I have multiple children who are all small in age, I get asked so many questions about my marriage. It’s not perfect so let’s just go ahead and put that out there. We are happy and love each other and are very committed to working on things that we need to work on in order to grow together and not apart.
For those of you that don’t know, Derrek and I have pretty much lived this since we’ve been married. Shortly after we got married, Derrek quit his job and we were together 24/7 until he started working construction then he quit that when our jewelry business went world wide. Did y’all know we had a jewelry business together? OH Yass honey, we made gemstone jewelry that shipped all over the world from our very own home. It was fabulous until we spent every waking hour making jewelry and then it wasn’t. Derrek eventually started his own business and we didn’t spend all of our days and nights together anymore but y’all, we prepared for this moment when it would happen again.
We can both work from home now, which is wonderful but I know that for some people it can get old really quickly. How can we coexist without killing each other, right? If this is your worry, don’t worry! I’ve got a few tips that might help you during all of this.
I have always wanted a partner who fully understands what our marriage would be and how it should be. Just because I am a woman doesn’t mean that I take care of everything (kids, home, etc…) we share all responsibilities because this is something we both committed to when we said our vows. Derrek and I have always talked about how things would be in our marriage and that we would both work together. I really don’t understand how people get married and all responsibilities fall on one person. It’s a partnership. Remember that. Don’t get me wrong… we’ve had our fair share of arguments because I forgot to pay a bill or he didn’t put his clothes in the dirty hamper but guess what guys, no one is perfect so all that we can do is work on it and move forward. With everyone at home, take this as your time to establish rules in your household for things that have to get done. The laundry, cleaning, cooking, taking care of the kids… make these duties equal so you’re both putting in the same amount of time and it will cause less fights.
At least once a week, Derrek and I go out on a date and we don’t talk about kids. This holds true even though we are stuck at home. We still have our “date nights” and do something just him and I. Yeap, the topic of kids is banned from the conversation. Our lives are spent focusing on the kids… this time doesn’t need to be about them. We talk about them all day every day, this time is about us reconnecting. If you can’t think of things to talk about, go to Pinterest and look up “conversation starters.” They have really cute topic ideas. Whatever you decide to do, make the effort and GO ON A DATE.
At night when the kids go to sleep, that’s Derrek and I’s time to spend together. We hang out from 8:30 til we go to bed and have our us time at home. Sometimes we do a bible study, play cards, talk about our goals or binge on Netflix or Bravo. Whatever we decide to do, we are hyper focused on each other and put our phones away. I just let my phone die around this time and I pick it up the next morning. Whatever is on my phone can wait, my husband cannot. It makes me feel so loved when we spend this time together and I know he feels the same way. After a long day doting on the kids, it’s nice to have that focus shift on each other.
Whatever your husbands love language is, figure it out. This is also another important concept that we learned through marriage counseling. We try to make it to marriage counseling a few times a month to keep us on the same page and help us understand the other person’s view points. Don’t love your spouse the way YOU want love, make sure that you find the time to figure out how they want to be loved and make sure you focus on that. Also, while we’re at it, do you remember the last time you had sex?
I am not trying to get to personal here but connecting on a physical level is really important for a man. If you go long periods without intimacy it can be really harmful for your marriage.
I heard this analogy and it makes so much sense; “A woman’s picture of romance tends to revolve around her emotional needs and her thirst for a relationship with her husband. It’s a package deal, like going on a cruise. Your cruise ticket doesn’t just allow you to enjoy sailing on a ship through beautiful waters to exotic locations; it includes three meals a day plus all-you-can-eat midnight buffets, access to swimming pools, games, exercise facilities, entertainment, excursions to ports of call, and a host of other amenities and experiences.
While a man has emotional needs, a man’s view of romance is much more focused on a single experience: sexual affirmation. In that regard, God wired men and women very differently. As you probably have experienced, these radical differences in approach to romance set the stage for repeated clashes in marriage—the husband pursues romance based on his sexual passion, and the wife goes after relationship.”
Just gonna throw in a little humor here… 9 months from now you might have a little quarantine baby at home, ha! But seriously, that connection is very important and really does make a huge difference in my own personal relationship with my husband.
In addition to all that I’ve mentioned above, try and make this as fun as possible. If you need work schedules, cleaning schedules, kid schedules to keep y’all from fighting, DO IT! If you need to designate hours of the day where you or your spouse get alone time, DO IT! If you need to stay in that dating mentality, try and kiss and snuggle once a day…. whatever it is that your marriage feels like it’s needing, just DO IT. We all have a choice when it comes to what we do in our own lives and I feel like innately we all know what we can do to remain happy with our significant other. Use this time to GROW and see how you come out on the other side. Sending lots and lots of love to you and your families!