With everything that’s been going on at work, a short but sweet escape from the city is what I long for. When my husband’s cousin planned a road trip two weeks ago, husband and I agreed to join him without a second thought. Did I ever mention that we own a motorcycle? It’s my husband’s second wife. Kidding. As we went on our journey from Manila to Tagaytay to Kaybiang Tunnel, I realized how marriage is similar to travelling. It is tiresome and full of bumps but wonderful. I will delay my month in review post so I can share this story.
P and I have been together for 12 years. We started as bf-gf on our teenage years and became teenage parents. What do you expect from two young, immature individuals who live under one roof? The first few years were not smooth. We argued A LOT. Money, in-laws, friends, jealousy, time, we fought over these things. We also thought about separation because it’s the only way we can get rid of each other.
Fast forward to today, P and I are now version 2.0 haha! I can say that we are more careful with our actions and words. The both of us learned how to compromise and extend our patience. We realized that past mistakes should not hinder us from rebuilding our marriage and loving each other more.
I am no expert when it comes to giving advice about marriage and I am aware that more challenges await us. Marami pa kaming kakaining bigas, ika nga. I have here some not so cheesy marriage tips that would help to make our marriage last.
Involve your spouse in money matters
One of the things that I have observed when I was still an active member of a mom’s group was couples tend to fight due to money matters specific to not consulting one another before making a financial decision. Sample scenario: the husband will give money to his parents or buy something without telling his wife about it. As partners, it is just right to talk over things that impact the family’s finances.
Men might think that since they are the ones who provide for the family, they have the whole right to do whatever they want to their earnings. For me this is wrong. You and your spouse should decide where the hard-earned money go. If you are about to lend or give some to a family member who is in need, your partner should at least be aware. If you want to buy something for yourself or for your home, tell your parnter. This DOES NOT MEAN that you have to seek your spouse’s approval all the time. The fact that you’re keeping him/her on the loop is enough to prevent an argument from starting.
When it comes to who’s supposed to keep budget, while the norm is it is the wife, I go for who you think can handle your finances better. In our case, I divide my salary to our expenses after getting my paycheck and give the miscellaneous part to my husband. He is the one budgeting it for food on weekends and whatever it is that we need in our house. Money is an issue that should never destroy your relationship. If you have concerns about it, have a serious talk with your spouse to sort things out.
Be each other’s critic and mentor
My husband and I work in a completely different field. Everyday, we tell each other stories about how our day went and the ups and downs of our job. We listen to each other and give honest feedback. It sometimes led to petty fights which I think is healthy. Your spouse will improve if you’re honest in telling him/her the things he/she needs to change, may it be the attitude, how to deal with issues, how to communicate, and the likes. Now if we are easy to point out what’s wrong, it should not be hard for us to encourage our partners to develop their strengths and give them a kudos for their achievement, no matter how big or small. Cheer your husband or wife, give him/her a pat on the back for a job well done. This does not only apply for working couples but for stay-at-home wives and even to house husbands as well. It ain’t easy to face household chores daily so they deserve a big resounding “good job!”
It’s okay to go to bed angry
I think one of the most popular advice to couples is never go to bed angry. While it is a good practice, I believe that it is absolutely okay to go to bed angry. It is not because we let pride take over but, there are serious matters that cannot be resolved easily. You don’t need to force yourself to be okay and shut up just so you can sleep together “peacefully”. There were numerous times when me and my husband slept hating each other. The next morning, we would discuss the cause of misunderstanding and fix the problem. We have to let our emotions subside to straighten things out without shouting and hurting out partner with awful words.
Allow your spouse to have some “me-time”
While it’s better when we do relaxing activities with our partner together, it is also important to have your husband or wife get some me-time. Let your spouse hang out with his/her friends. Catching up with old friends is one of the simplest but best stress relievers. Everybody needs a break. My husband drinks with our kumpares even without an occassion. As long as he does not do it often and he follows our rules, I am all for it. I join my high school and college friends’ lakad when I am available and P fetches me wherever I am. I would ask him to look after the kids kung nakakasama ako sa mga gala. Just remember to keep your priorities straight and not go overboard.
I hope you learned something from this post. If you have marriage tips, feel free to share them. Keep the fire burning!