Making A Marriage


The following is a guest post by Brittany Dyer on the topic of Marriage. Marriage, including making one work, means something different to us all. I love her take on the subject, and I hope you do too! Don’t forget to check out her website, Follow The Dyers

My husband and I have been married for 9 years this month. We have 2 beautiful children, ages 2 and 3. Yes, crazy, I know! My background is counseling, but I am currently a stay-at-home mama and pastor’s wife, originally from Tennessee, currently residing in Bangkok Thailand. We love this crazy journey and crazy marriage God has given us.

My husband and I have decided to make marriage a priority. First is God, then comes our marriage. We even place our marriage above our children. With children, this concept is a challenge, however, especially with littles because they are always wanting attention, but we know if we have a solid marriage, then our children will feel more loved and have a good example of what marriage and stability looks like. If my “wife cup” is full, then I will be better able to love my children. Therefore, marriage is our #2 priority in our lives right behind our relationship with God.

How do we keep our marriage solid? Well, we access our needs. We determine what we need from the other partner to feel loved. Despite what some people seem to believe, people evolve, and, therefore, so does marriage. I believe it is a good idea to access your marital needs about once a year to make sure your needs are being met in appropriate ways. This list should not be exhaustive and long, but maybe list the top 3 things each of you needs in your marriage and work toward meeting those few needs well. For example, my Love Language is physical touch, so I need affection from my husband. That need would be discussed when we talk about our marital needs. Let’s be real ladies, our husbands need sex, so be prepared for that one to be on his list! Not only does sex help men feel loved like affection does for women, but they are biologically created for and need sex. Commit to each other to work on these top 3 needs in your marriage, no matter what it is the other person needs.

We try to compliment each other often. Providing compliments builds up the other person’s confidence and self-esteem. It also allows them to feel loved, so make sure you are investing in your marriage by complimenting your spouse!

We talk about our issues. This concept is not always easy, but we try to come to a compromise on issues we fight about, and sometimes getting it off one’s chest can just make you feel better. By talking about a problem, we can usually come to some sort of a conclusion to move on and not continue to be upset about it in the future. This idea is not always foolproof, but we try!

We do not use the past against each other. We do not bring up arguments in the past in order to hurt one another. We do not bring up things in each other’s past that will cut each other deeply. We give each other grace, and we move on after an argument is resolved, and our marriage remains much happier because of it!

We remember the good times. We remember that trip to Florida we went on when we were dating to watch the UT/Florida Game, where I traveled and slept in a hotel room with 3 other guys and never told my family about it. We remember leaving our wedding and driving 1 ½ hours and all the craziness that went along with that drive (think lubricant all over the entire car-thanks to my husband’s buddies!). We remember the good times often and try not to get so caught up in the negative moments of life.

My husband and I keep our marriage exciting by allowing it to be adventurous. We invest in our marriage by going on dates, vacation and doing spontaneous things, even with our children in tow. In addition to the spontaneous things we do, we also have traditions that make life more fun because of the things we look forward to doing. Excitement and adventure keep marriage fun!

We try to forget expectations others place on us. The world places some pretty harsh expectations on marriages. Fairy tales, television sitcoms and romantic comedies all place this ideal man or ideal woman in our head that are completely unrealistic. It is important to realize these are television shows and movies for a reason-they are NOT real life! We have to accept our husbands for who they are and leave the expectations in the movies! Otherwise, we place unrealistic standards and expectations on our husbands that will always leave them falling short to achieve, and we will always be disappointed.

For all of the reasons, I remain secure in my marriage. We can overcome any difficulty in our marriage with the information given above. Enjoy and happy marriages!

Brittany is a pastor’s wife, living in Bangkok, Thailand. She is a former counselor, and now a SAHM to two wonderful children. You can read her blog, about Christianity and Parenting, at her site, Follow The Dyers.

Brittany talks about making her marriage a priority, how to keep things interesting, and overcoming unrealistic expectations

Don’t Downplay Your Spouse

Ever talk about your partner?

Everyone is a little guilty of this. I know I am. But I really shouldn’t do it. Chatting with girlfriends, your mom, your best friend from high school, just any normal conversation, the topics sometimes lead to your loved one. Continue reading “Don’t Downplay Your Spouse”

World’s Best Husband

What makes the World’s Best Husband?
Well I could brag about mine all day. And usually do. Not because of any particular thing he does or says, but because of all the things he does as a whole.
I remember visiting his Dad once,  and my husband later telling me what he was instructed to do in order to let me know I was appreciated.
“Every once in a while,  buy her some flowers. “
He has never once bought me flowers.  But he knows I’m just not a flower kind of person. They are pretty,  but I’m not the kind of woman who yerns for a bouquet of expensive roses I’ll no doubt forget to water,  and allow to wilt away in a few days.
Ice cream?  Hells yes! Wine? Tequila?! Even better! He knows I can appreciate those things more than expensive flowers.
I craved lime all throughout my pregnancy, and as it got closer to our son’s birth,  I kept dropping hints that margaritas were in order as soon as I were released from the hospital.  I honestly forgotten all about it until the first night our new baby was home.  My sweet husband ran out,  brought back ice cream & Margaritaville mix, and said,  “You’ve done enough.  Relax for a while. “
At Christmas,  after listening to my ranting about society as a collective becoming worse and the world a scarier place,  He didn’t go out and get some over priced jewelry that will sit on my dresser for the majority of its life (because I don’t wear a lot of jewelry) or some other stereotypical Husband gift. He bought me a gun-made sure I could shoot it effectively-and bought my concealed carry permit.
“You need to know how to protect yourself if you’re ever in a situation and I’m mot around. ” And he made sure of that.
He talks to me. We discuss things that are going on in our lives,  and its not just to humor each other.  He takes a genuine interest in what’s going on other than the day to day trivial tasks of a SAHM.
Sometimes I’ll have girlfriends ask,  “how are things going between y’all? ” and they seem surprised,  maybe even disappointed,  that I don’t have a huge bitch list to get off my chest. But we really never fight-our arguments are even stupid and comical-and we have an all around healthy relationship.  And that’s how it’s supposed to be! You aren’t supposed to find yourself bitching about your spouse all the time.
And no, mine doesn’t shower me with flowers & jewelry at every holiday… and I don’t want him to. I want him to keep doing exactly what he’s doing;  paying attention to what I say and putting forth the effort to show that not only does he listen. But he cares.
And that’s why I have the World’s Best Husband.

It’s important to be a couple, as well as a couple of parents

I think the hardest thing about having a baby and becoming parents, is remembering to be a couple.

Most of your time is spent together as a family: Family Meals,  which at our house consists of taking turns feeding baby while the other eats a few bites off their plate. Then family bath time ( Its a two person job with our little one.  One parent entertains and plays in the tub, while the other washes.  Then comes the battle of jammies & trying to brush tiny baby teeth).

Then Dad catches up on college course work while I nurse and snuggle baby to sleep. By the time that’s over, we slink off to bed, and I wait for the inevitable crying of a wet diaper & hungry baby that comes within a few hours.

I’m at home with baby all day while my husband is at school/work, and in the afternoons, we switch off.  Daddy plays with the baby as I catch up on whatever chores I didn’t get to,  and start dinner.  The circle of life continues.

But as hard,  and sometimes seemingly impossible as this is, you simply have to have couple time. You have to be able to bond & enjoy each other’s company, like you did before children.

The only way we can accomplish this, is by either; sending baby to spend a night with grandma (which she is more than happy to oblige), or when that’s not possible (mostly because I’m such a nervous wreck with anxiety because something could happen, even though it never does), we do option B – cram as much “adult” time into those magical few hours in the late night, as we can, before a wee-hour feeding.

We watch a few episodes of Netflix & cuddle. Enjoy a glass of wine (or beer). If I’m not done with laundry, towels are folded as we rehash the latest gossip collected from our seperate groups of friends.  We shower together. My husband & I do everything we can together  & just get back to being two people,  alone.

It’s too easy to fall into a rut of noncomunication. You get tired after parenting all day, the home work load has you down. Husband is cranky because he only got five hours of sleep each night this week (even though you actually had less because you actually get up to change, and feed, and pace your baby back to sleep).

By the time the house has gotten quiet,  the overwhelming temptation to shut down, and just enjoy silence, is relentless. I’m guilty of it. So is my husband. But you have to try that reconnection. Your relationship,  desire, drive, your life as a couple,  depend on it.

Having a baby didn’t kill it-That’s merely a symptom of the bigger problem: that too much of your new lives as parents,  had made you forget your already existent lives, as a couple.
It takes work, but even if its just a few minutes before bed (however you choose to define that term,  because I for one haven’t had a real bedtime in nine months), try to focus on the bonding aspects of your relationship with your spouse. Take on any conflicts with time to talk,  together,  and work out any issues that may be brewing.  You’ll both feel so much better in the long run-and feel more energized to take on the “parent” roles again when it’s time.

Remember that your family started with the two of you first-and that love is the glue that holds it all together. ♡

The fairy tale

Fairy tales do come true,  but its only up to you…
 
Everyone has read them from one time or another. We are all familiar of the beautiful princess, who longed for her knight in shining armor to slay the Dragon, and rescue her from the evil Queen’s castle.
Then you grow up and realize you aren’t anything like the princess you identified with. More like an office girl, working a dead end job, who’s knight is more like a jackass in a Volcom t-shirt. The Dragon isn’t as evil as your boss is on a Monday. And the Queen’s castle is more like a third floor walk up on the Westside of town, with leaky faucets and a strange carpet mold in the closet that NO amount of bleach will kill.
What advantage that you DO have that our fictional muses didn’t,  is that you don’t NEED anyone to rescue you. No one but your self that is.
You have the power inside to change your situation,  no matter what. Everything starts with the will to succeed. Without that,  nothing can be accomplished.  You have to want things to change before they will.
Don’t allow fear to keep you from the things you want. You deserve a better job-a true hero-an awesome home.  But the doubt you carry within yourself is the only thing truly holding you back. A person can be unstoppable with the right motivation and attitude for change.
Find that one goal that you want more then anything. Then focus on how you can achieve that. Never let doubt take over your plans. When you begin to doubt,  your potential is immediately tainted by fear. Remember that no one can succeed without true will power within themselves.
No matter who you are,  everyone has unlocked potential to do whatever They want.  You just have to find it within yourself. When you decide that you aren’t going to let anything get in your way,  Not only do you become unstoppable,  but the world will rise to meet you.
Positivity breeds positivity, and first you have to rely on yourself to provide it. No one else is going to. You must breed it yourself.
Take it from this princess who finally decided she deserves a better life. It takes YOU quitting that crappy job, dumping the loser boyfriend, and getting out on your own, to be able to get exactly what you want out of life. Only when you take matters into your own hands, will you find the career you want, an amazing partner, and the life you deserve.
You have to chase your own fairy tale. No hero is going show up and whisk you away to a better life. Its all within you. Once you are able to harness this, everything changes. And then your fairy tale does come true♡