Written by Aaron & April Jacob
We all know a couple or two who seem to have a perfect marriage. Sigh... if only we could all be like them. What are their secrets?!
How do you know if you have a healthy relationship with your spouse? Here are 8 things we've observed healthy couples do.
Healthy couples don't stop dating when they get married. That's right. They keep dating each other. And they make date night a priority. They keep their relationship and friendship alive by continuing to date each other, by continuing to try new things together, and by continuing to share adventures together. And their date nights are full of laughter and kissing selfies, too.
Believe it or not, couples in very healthy relationships disagree! These couples recognize that their marriage is made up of two different people, from different backgrounds, with different life experiences, who just happen to have different opinions from time to time. They are okay with conflict and recognize it as a natural and normal part of their "happily ever after." These couples have learned to disagree respectfully, to see the other person's point of view, and to compromise in order to find healthy solutions.
3. Have sex... often
You read right, healthy couples have sex often. They kiss, hug, touch, andflirt on a consistent basis, so that sex is simply a natural and normal pinnacle of connection and intimacy for them. Healthy couplestalk about sex and help each other prioritize it on a regular basis. These couples use physical affection and sex to create, build upon, and nurture feelings of trust, confidence, intimacy, commitment and love in their marriages.
Couples in healthy marriages have healthy communication habits. They know what's going on in each other's lives and they make time to talk. They are really good at talking and really good at listening. They aren't afraid to share their feelings with each other because they know their thoughts and feelings will be respected and kept safe. Oh, and they don't keep secrets from each other.
Healthy couples forgive each other... a lot, a lot. These couples have the ability to see the best in their spouse, to give their spouse the benefit of the doubt, and to not expect perfection (because they recognize that they, themselves, aren't perfect!). Healthy couples are patient, kind, and quick to say they are sorry. They let little things go and they don't hold grudges. They forgive each other as often as necessary, and move on with a positive perspective about their relationship and about each other.
6. Be best friends
Couples in healthy relationships are best friends. They want to spend time together. They want to know more about each other. They want to have fun together. These couples stay in touch throughout the day, are sensitive to the emotional needs of each other, and intentionally create opportunities to share time and space together every day. They have learned the power of co-dependence and teamwork.
7. Offer support
Healthy couples support each other. They are cheerleaders for one another and they give each other wings to fly. If something is important to one spouse, then by default it's important to the other spouse. In healthy relationships, husbands and wives are there for each other through thick and thin. They encourage each other in individual pursuits and interests, and are always there to help each other out and to cheer each other on.
8. Focus on the good
Finally, couples in healthy marriages focus on the good. They choose to focus on everything that is right in their relationship and to be grateful for what they have, instead of focusing on what they feel their relationship may lack. They see the good in their spouse, offer praise and compliments often, and speak positively about their marriage and each other.
You and your spouse are probably doing most of these things. Way to go. You're doing better than you think. So, take a look at this list (which isn't all-inclusive) and pick one thing you want to work on this week. Little things like listening to your spouse, saying you are sorry, and making time for sex can go a long way towards nurturing your marriage this week. Happy nurturing.
“Marriage is a mosaic you build with your spouse. Millions of tiny moments that create your love story.”
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