Works for Me: Love and Marriage

You may have heard that Works For Me Wednesday has a new home over at We Are THAT Family. I had the privilege of meeting Kristen at Blissdom, and she is just lovely. This week she wants us to share the tip that has helped us the most so I went back through my archives, and I thought this one bears repeating. Back in February of 2007, Shannon asked us to:

Share with us the best relationship advice you can give. Or, share with us some ideas for making Valentine’s Day special for your sweetie or your kids.

Here is what I said:

I’m gonna choose the option #1, although I’m not sure I’m best qualified to give relationship advice this week. If I were giving advice based on lessons I’ve learned over the past 24 hours, it would go something like this:

1) Don’t shove all three kids at the husband the minute he walks in the door and say something like, “Good, your home. They’re all yours.” Guys don’t take too kindly to that. They seem to think they need time to unwind after a long day at work. What’s that all about, anyway? I thought that’s what that 30-minute commute was for.

2) When the husband calls from work at the witching hour and excitedly tells you about some new job responsibility and opportunity for professional growth and recognition, try to show some interest. As opposed to interrupting him to yell at the kids and then asking grumpily what time he plans to get home.

As helpful as I’m sure that is to you, I’ve tried to come up with some of the bigger lessons I’ve learned over the last 12 years of marriage. These are nothing is new or unusual, but it took me some time to get it down pat, so maybe it will be helpful to someone.

So here we go. The best relationship advice I have to offer:

1) Take at least 15 minutes every day and sit down together and talk. Really listen to what the other has to say. Relationships need time to refuel.

2) Don’t try to change him (or her). Focus on the qualities you like about your partner, try to remember the reasons you fell in love in the first place. And then overlook the rest. It’s amazing what changing your attitude about someone can do for a relationship.

3) Swallow your pride. Learn to say, “I was wrong. I’m sorry.” Why is it SO HARD to say these words to the people we love the most?


Got something to add?  Give us your best relationship advice.

For more Works For Me Wednesday tips, head on over to We Are THAT Family.


  1. Jackeline date says

    I love these advice. True, it’s really hard to say sorry to someone you love. I think it’s because they’re confident that you’re still there for them. Just look at the way someone runs after the one they love after they broke up. One is just bound to apologize when they know they’re about to be left alone.

  2. says

    I love your post but I have to disagree with the last bit. I am pretty certain number three is optional but I have never been wrong so I can’t say for sure ;)I really do love your post. You have a wonderful blog. Hugs, Jen

  3. says

    I don’t get that needing time to “unwind” thing – never have never will. When is the last time you had 30 minutes to sit in your car and listen to whatever you wanted and not talk to anyone? I could seriously unwind in that time!

  4. says

    Remember you were husband and wife before you were mom and dad. Even if it was just a short time. :) Never use parenting as an excuse for neglecting your marriage.

    Something that has stood out to me more in recent years is to spend time with other couples that share the same values. It may be hard to leave friendships from our single days behind, but if those people no longer life a life that is compatible with the one you are trying to live, it will not be healthy. I don’t mean to leave them out in the cold, but it is so important that you surround yourselves with healthy marriages. Especially when the women get together or the men get together on their own. I want my husband hanging out with men that are going to value their wives, not go out and act like single guys looking for a hot date. If we are surrounded by good, we will choose good.

  5. Jo-Lynne says

    Nicole – Great advice! We haven’t had the problem of friends who bring us down, but I’m sure a lot of couples do.

  6. Emily says

    Great advice from you and the comments. My best advice is to be willing to change – your mind, your opinion, your stance, your plans – hell even your clothes. I’m not right all the time but being able to change myself mid-stream makes a huge difference!

  7. says

    Do everything you can to keep the communication lines open and the intimacy flowing (minimal at best)while raising your family because when your nest is empty (it will be sooner than you realize)…you don’t want to look at your spouse and say “who are you, what do you like, what are your interest or do I know you?”.

    It happens more than you know in couples who focus on their children, their children’s needs and lose focus of their spouse.

    No, I still haven’t perfected the above and my nest will be empty in 3 short years…but, I do know who he is and what he still likes 😀

  8. says

    Jo-Lynne, you’ve hit it all right on the head with your advice. I can so relate to number one and two from your archived post.

    As much as I want to, I don’t throw them all in his lap the minute he walks in the door. I know I wouldn’t want him to do that to me either.

    And number two hits home recently. He’s been calling and coming home with a lot more “exciting” things about work lately and it bores me to tears most of the time, but I don’t let him know that.

    Just like it probably bores him to tears when I talked about my business. MOST of the time you couldn’t tell 😉

    You two look like a very sweet couple.


  9. says

    Those are great tips! I am always working to take the time to just sit and talk to Hubby. It isn’t always easy, but it is a wonderful few minutes of us time.

  10. says

    Great advice. Especially the 15 minutes a day thing. In theory, it seems easy to do, but – between kids and computers and baths and… – sometimes it’s easy to neglect that time together. But it’s so important…

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