You think that after you marry, your love will continue to grow. We hope so. But just to help you along the way, the following thoughts will help keep you focused on developing a healthy, happy marriage (and then afterward, we will give you additional “secrets” for newlyweds):
1. Commit “till death do us part” —you have made a vow to God and to another much-loved human being. [Editor’s note from Marriage Missions: Make the vow with each other not to let the word “divorce” be a part of your vocabulary or even your inner thoughts or it will start eroding away at your marital relationship.]
- Dream together —look forward to things.
- Be loyal to your mate at all costs.
- Care more about what your mate thinks of you than what your friends do.
2. Develop a common spiritual commitment.
- Pray for your mate regularly.
- Pray together regularly.
- Worship together.
3. Want what is best for your life-mate.
- Focus on what’s right with your mate, not what’s wrong with him/her.
- Work as a team —rely on each other’s strength.
- Serve your mate.
4. Spend time with model couples who have been happily married ten to twenty years longer than you.
- Develop a relationship with a personal mentor to help you when times are tough, giving you wise counsel.
- Spend time with peer couples that have healthy, happy marriages.
5. Understand that no marriage is perfect and no partner is perfect. Give grace to be different.
- No one wants to fail. Your mate is doing the best he/she can at the moment.
- Don’t take all emotional explosions personally. Sometimes your mate just needs to let off steam!
- Let the relationship breathe. A couple needs time together and away. When things get tense, you may just need a few hours or days away.
6. Find time to communicate —walking on the beach, telephoning, traveling together.
- Communicating your heart:
—Listen to your mate’s heart, not just to words.
—Let your mate vent emotions without feeling you have to “fix it!”
- Settling differences:
—Don’t pout; stay and talk it out.
—”Clarify” your concerns if you don’t like to “confront.”
—Listen carefully. Allow the other to complete his/her thoughts without you interrupting, moving off the subject, or waiting impatiently to make your point.
7. Develop common interests.
- Enjoy hobbies and friends.
- Do fun things together —concerts, plays, picnics.
- Travel together whenever you get a chance.
8. Get to know your mate at the deepest level possible.
- Study your mate —what turns her/him off and on sexually, nonverbal signals, foreplay, moods, cycles, etc.
- Know precisely what your mate needs from you.
- Negative kidding —saying negative things you don’t really mean that secretly hurt and do serious damage to one’s confidence and one’s natural love;
- Conditional love —basing love on actions of any kind;
- Waiting for your mate to meet your needs before you will meet hers/his;
- Talking negatively about your mate’s parents.
10. Be romantic, not just sexy.
- Splurge occasionally.
- Do small things which communicate “Thinking only of you… Thought of you while I was away… You are the center of my universe!”
- Start foreplay 10 minutes after climax, not ten minutes before climax.
- Talk with a loving, caring, tender tone in your voice, not an angry, harsh, bitter tone.
The above thoughts come from a small booklet entitled, Making the Most of Your Honeymoon Year by Bobb and Cheryl Biehl. Unfortunately this book is no longer in print. But it may still be available through Amazon.com or by contacting Bobb at the email address below. Bobb and Cheryl Biehl have been married since 1964. Bobb was a member of the Focus on the Family board of directors, and is a business consultant, and can be reached at bobbbiehl.com. Cheryl is an author/speaker and a charter member of Trinity Forum.
— ALSO —
Please click into the following web site links to read the following articles for additional newlywed tips:
If you have additional tips you can share to help others in this area of marriage, or you want to share requests for prayer and/or ask others for advice, please “Join the Discussion” by adding your comments below.