When you’re dating, the process of getting to know one another becomes one of your top priorities. You spend time together sharing activities and talking. That’s what you’re all about. Part of you is evaluating and thinking about whether or not you can marry this guy and live happily ever after. Those strong feelings of being in love may carry you through accepting many of the differences in your spouse.
At the same time you’re trying to show your best side, which is often more accommodating than your usual way of relating.
After being married for some time, you may feel as if the relationship has changed, and you’re not sure you like it. You and your husband don’t really talk the way you used to. And some of your husband’s personality traits or habits are now more irritating than charming. What’s happening here?
You’re changing from a bride to a wife. There’s a difference! Your relationship is becoming more real. Now you see the differences between you and your husband in light of forever. He’s going to want to watch football every Sunday for the rest of his life. That doesn’t sound like fun to me. He just sits in front of that TV for hours. What happened to talking?
Life has changed. You’re now married and living life with all its responsibilities. Jobs, homes, and children can take up so much of your energy that you seem to stop growing as a couple. And the most frustrating part may be that it seems perfectly fine with your husband. That’s where the acceptance comes into play.
Mature love can accept that marriage is different from dating. Not worse, just different. Mature love can accept that priorities do change and that they need to change. A mature wife can accept that the way her husband shows his love now may be through working hard to provide for his family instead of taking you out every week for a long talk over dinner. A wife accepts that after a long week, maybe the activity her husband needs the most is just “zoning” in front of the TV.
Please don’t misunderstand me. Marriage is meant to include many forms of love—friendship, romantic, sexual, and unconditional—and the expression of each type includes communication.
We as wives need to accept that communication—like anything else in marriage—will be better in some seasons than in others. Sometimes you will enjoy new heights of intimacy, but at other times you and your husband won’t have opportunities to talk about much more than the coordination of your busy schedules. Accept the ebb and flow of communication, and find a balance that you and your husband agree on.
Excerpt from the book What a Husband Needs from His Wife, written by Melanie Chitwood
Image credit: Ejja Pahlevi