It’s not a secret that the first year of marriage is apparently the hardest, with Los Angeles-based psychologist, Yvonne Thomas, Ph.D. explaining that “In the first year of marriage, couples must learn and practice the skills of how to compromise and work as a team more than ever before, both of which aren’t always easy to do.” During the honeymoon period, many couples find that they encounter trials and tribulations on their road to marital bliss; but here is how we suggest you navigate that journey so you emerge on the other side as a stronger couple.
Most couples list communication as one of the most important facets of a relationship, yet many of us struggle to do it adequately. Staying open, respectful, and unassuming is the key to building an environment where you both feel comfortable enough to air your thoughts and feelings. Psychotherapist Mel Schwartz implores us to consider that “words don’t mean the same thing to all of us. In fact, they ordinarily evoke differing connotations based upon each individual’s experiences” and suggests we ask ask for clarification instead of jumping to conclusions about what the other person is trying to say about us.
Okay, so you’re married now, so why bother dating each other anymore right? WRONG. It has been reported that many married couples lose that element of romance due to us directing our energy towards technology instead of each other. Getting home and binge-watching hours of ‘Suits’ on Netflix, or laying next to each other scrolling on twitter may sound tempting, but you cant become complacent and lose the spark or spontaneity in your relationship.
We all have friends that ghost during the honeymoon period, but it is never healthy to lose contact with your friends as a result of being newly married. You need a healthy, steady, and secure support network to avoid your partner becoming…essentially your therapist. It’s also potentially toxic to build an inappropriate attachment to someone which can result in you losing your individual identity. Psychoanalyst and Author of “Loving Him Without Losing Yourself”, Beverly Engel states that women often sacrifice their social life, their values, and even the way they like to dress/wear their hair for their partners and “In time, these women find they have merged their lives with their partners’ to the point where they have no life to go back to if the relationship ends.”
“Lay everything out on the table: the numbers, the goals, the feelings, the fears. Do this the same time every month and get into a habit. The more consistent you are, the easier it gets.”
“Just because this person is your partner and they’ve committed to you doesn’t mean you get to treat them more carelessly—especially during arguments.” My grandmother always says don’t say anything in an argument that you can’t take back. Similarly, showing appreciation is really not that difficult, and it can prevent both parties from feeling taken for granted.
Okay, you want a clean house and you want the dishes done, but no one will die if they aren’t completed. Similarly, don’t always be the one to do the same chore or it could breed resentment if you feel your other half isn’t pulling their weight. If you and your partner have tasks you love doing, how about divving it up like that?
“Sex is incredibly important; it deepens your love and bond. Make time for being physically intimate, but also make sure to take the pressure off of having sex”
A really easy way to make someone feel good is to pay attention to them and share a few words about what positive things you see. There’s always something to notice, from a quality in them to an accomplishment.
Simple…just because you’ve committed yourselves to one another doesn’t mean your life is over. Be spontaneous, flirt with each other, and continue to find ways to surprise your other half too because you’re in it for the long run.