Learn How to Protect Your Marriage
There will always be several people and interests competing for our attention at any given time, such as family and friends, children, work and hobbies. This interference can be destructive in the absence of proper boundaries.
Every married couple should be able to recognize potential threats to the marriage and actively fend them off. This means saying no to the temptations and pressures of everyday life and teaching family, friends and kids to respect the marriage.
Many people assume that workaholics just love their jobs more than their spouses. While this is true for some, most workaholics are just looking for an escape from their real issues. For instance, someone who feels hurt, emotionally disconnected or controlled by the spouse may retreat to work. Similarly, someone who has an unhealthy desire for approval may retreat to work where he or she feels most competent.
If your spouse is a workaholic, demanding that they spend less time at work won’t get you anywhere. Instead, ask yourself whether you may be unknowingly causing your spouse to spend more time at work. If you are, change your behavior and sooner or later your spouse will change theirs.
Children needs a lot of love and attention and without proper boundaries, they can put a strain on a marriage. This is not to say that marital responsibilities should take preference of parental responsibilities. Parents can find a healthy balance by following a few marriage tips.
Many parents use their children to escape the real issues in their marriages. For instance, couples that have intimacy problems often use the kids to avoid intimacy. Others feel that kids are easier to be around because they have to listen to what they are told and can’t talk back without getting into trouble.
As a parent, you must define where you end and where your children begin. You must allow your kids to do things for themselves and stop living vicariously through them and taking their achievements and failures to be your own. You must also avoid over sharing about your marriage with your kids; remember they are your kids not your friends. Lastly, teach them to respect your time together as a couple.
Family and Friends
In-laws and friends interfere with marriages all the time, but they are not the real problem. The real problem is that many couples have no idea how to set and communicate boundaries to their family and friends. Setting boundaries is especially difficult for couples that are either financially or emotionally dependent on their family or friends. For instance, it’s hard to tell the in-laws that they can’t just drop in whenever they want if they are helping you pay the bills. It’s also hard to tell friends not to interfere with your marriage when you tell them everything that happens in the marriage.
You must know your physical, emotional, mental and spiritual limits in order to set boundaries. This means identifying what you can put up with and what stresses you. When you’re done, you’ll know exactly what your boundaries should be. The next step is to communicate these boundaries together as a couple to family and friends. Let them know what bothers you and discuss how you can work together to address the issue.
These marriage tips are great advice for newlyweds and older couples that desire a happy marriage.