My husband and I have been together for 11 years, 8 of which have been married. And within this time we’ve had to overcome a lot issues within our marriage.
From infidelity to eating disorders to thoughts of suicide and depression on both of our parts, its been one hell of a roller coaster ride. And I am not going to lie and say it wasn’t hard. Because hard doesn’t even begin to describe it.
I can remember at least four occasions when I thought of leaving my husband over the issues we where having in our marriage. For a long time, and if I am being honest, even still some today my husband was very insecure. He was constantly looking for approval from others, which would end up being mostly females.
Now, while my husband never physically cheated on me, I still consider his actions those of infidelity. Having conversations with other women, seeking out their approval and attention in place of mine, broke me. It broke me in ways I couldn’t even begin to explain.
Those thoughts of not being good enough, or not being what he needed still come up today and we’ve fought a lot of insecurities and broken trust in overcoming the issues in our marriage.
As much as I should be, I don’t know, ashamed or secretive about our issues, I’m not. And I’m not because it seems to me that having to overcome issues in marriage isn’t really talked about. It’s almost as if society says if you have any issues in your marriage to overcome then it isn’t meant to be. Which is the complete opposite of what it should be.
Marriage takes two. Two working together towards a common goal. Which in this world today, is an abstract concept. With the norm being to only think of self and what you as an individual need. But if no one is talking about these issues. If no one says’
Our marriage isn’t perfect and we’ve had plenty of challenges to overcome.”
How are others supposed to know its normal? I mean, when you think about it, marriage is joining two completely inexperienced insecure people together for the rest of their lives. Of course there will be issues.
Now, before I go any further, I am not saying all issues can be overcome or that some issues are easier / better then others. I believe we all have our line in the sand so to speak. What I am saying is that, wherever you draw your line is fine, but you do need to be realistic about it.
For example, when it came to my husband seeking other women’s attention, my first reaction was to blame him. Right, of course its his fault and his fault alone. No, it wasn’t. That is just plain naive of someone to think. Within this situation, I had to take a step back and really reflect on myself. Reflect on who I was as his wife at that time.
Again, this does not negate that my husband had absolutely no business talking/flirting with other women, but in that same vain, what had I done to stop it? What had I done to make my husband feel comfortable enough to tell me his insecurities and be vulnerable with me? Nothing, that’s what.
As his wife, I just assumed he would tell me this stuff. I assumed he would open up and be honest with me and basically spill his soul out to me because I had the title of wife. (as a side note, this assuming is what brought about a lot of the issues we had to overcome in our marriage.) Which is completely ridiculous when I think back on it.
Just like anyone I had to earn that trust. I had to put in the work to show him, I was a safe space for him. That he could confide in me without threat of it coming back to hurt him. But that takes work, and who wants to do that right? Marriage is supposed to be “happily ever after,” let society tell it.
And that’s just the thing. It can be a happily ever after, you just have to put in the work. With anything in life, if you want to overcome adversity it will take work. So how exactly do you work at overcoming issues in your marriage?
For starters, having an open mind and heart are key. you have to be willing to look at yourself. Truly look at yourself. All the blame can not be put on your spouse. Once you’ve come to that decision, stick with it. Like a dog with a bone, stick with it.
From there, pray. May sound cliche or super religious and that fine. But for me, my thought process was, God created marriage so obviously he can help me through it. And I was right. Every time my husband and I are having issues, I pray. I ask God for guidance on how to express myself to my husband in a way he’ll understand and be able to receive. How to get my husband to help me more around the house and with the kids. Literally anything that involves our marriage I pray to God about, and it has changed my perspective tremendously.
As a final step, try weekly check ins. My husband and I started these when things got really bad in our marriage. With so many issues to overcome in our marriage we thought for sure things couldn’t get any better. Glad we didn’t stick to those believes.
Once a week, we take time out to do spouse check ins. This is where we will ask each other how’ve we been. So from me, I will ask how I’ve been as a wife. Where could I have supported him better? Or made him feel more secure in his role as the head of household. And for him he’ll ask how could he have helped me with the kids more? Or what could he have done to support my dreams more.
Now don’t get it wrong, this isn’t just a time to complain or talk down to each other. These are genuine concerns each of us have that we try to convey in a loving way to the other. In addition we also make it a point to speak on our wins. How the other was amazing that week and what we appreciated most about them that week.
This is where that thought of being able to really look at yourself and being prepared to make actual changes comes in. It can be hard to hear from someone that you’re not perfect, especially on the weekly basis, but I promise you, in the end it is so worth it in overcoming issues within marriage.
What are some ways you’ve used to overcome issues in your marriage? Leave me some tips down below!