Archive for May, 2013
”J” months have the highest number of divorces. In January many spouses have waited until after the holidays. In June even more couples file for divorce (after school is out). Don’t become a statistic. Avoid the “D” word by tending to your marriage every month.
One of the top 10 things couples argue about is the past. Let it go. You can’t change it, but you can learn from it. Focus on what you’re doing today to stop a bad habit or start a healthy routine. Fix yourself, not your spouse.
“There is a space in the basement [that]…had come to accumulate a number of odds and ends that we didn’t feel like dealing with when we first moved, and then items that we just didn’t feel like dealing with at all. Yesterday, the time came to open it all up and pare down.” The cleaning process yields an important insight.
(Reader’s Tip) In bad times repeat your vows aloud: “In good times and in bad, in sickness and in health, ’til death do us part.” Remind yourself that you vowed not to give up; that can help make it easier to go forward with repairs.
Justin’s bad foot means that Sara has to do more yard work than she expected. She learns an important lesson about finding God in everyday tasks.
New research shows that money can, indeed, buy happiness. But it depends on whether couples spend money on others, and whether they use money to buy experiences rather than things.
“Wee, wee, wee, all the way home.” Marriage is not for piggies, but our language can betray our values. Do you refer to “my home,” “my money,” or “my kids”? Try changing it to “our home,” our money,” “our kids.” Our words can remind us that we’re a team.
(Memorial Day) Today we honor those veterans who gave their lives for their country. Say a prayer of gratitude for those who risk their lives for others.
“Everything that the Father has is mine.” (John 16:15) The same can be said for spouses. This sounds nice and fair until you talk specifics, like my paycheck, my time, my toothbrush… Is there anything you don’t want to share?
Just as birth order impacts how children face life, it also can influence how married couples face each other. Two “firstborns” can compete with each other. Two “middle children” can avoid conflicts. Two “youngests” can be unduly impulsive. How do you match up?
(Reader’s Tip) Tell you spouse specifically what you’d like him or her to pray for. Then ask what he or she needs prayers for.
Are you a detail person while your beloved sees the big picture – or vice-versa? These differences can complement each other for good, but if too extreme they can cause friction. Make a commitment to develop your shadow side.
You think you’re right. Your spouse thinks the opposite. Neither of you wins by making the other wrong. Try giving the benefit of the doubt to your beloved. Try it their way – at least once.
Over the past few weeks baby Gus’ personality has started to emerge. “I can’t prove it,” says Dad, “but my intuition has started to tell me that he knows when he is doing something he is not supposed to be doing.”
(Reader’s Tip) When you get frustrated, pray for understanding.
Often the simple act of rebooting can remedy a computer problem. Sometimes marriages need a reboot. If a problem is not resolving readily, try this: Stop. Let both of you cool off. Forgive. Ask for a “do over.”
(Pentecost) “How does each of us hear them in our native language?” (Acts 2:1-11) Do you understand your spouse’s love language? Check out Gary Chapman’s bestseller, The 5 Love Languages.
One of the challenges to married couples is to know how to be life-giving. Natural Family Planning helps couples develop an attitude of welcoming children. NFP can also be used to space or limit family size, but an open heart goes a long way.
(Reader’s Tip) When he has long workdays I surprise him and drop off special treats at his office. It always re-energizes him, physically and mentally.
“Family life doesn’t just happen; it is a decision, a choice,” say the Catholic bishops of Manitoba, Canada. Today, “perhaps more than ever before, we must choose to be a family.”
Is your lovemaking out of balance? This is a touchy topic but if your spouse is almost always the one who initiates physical intimacy, he or she may not be really satisfied – even if you say “Yes.” The real desire is to be desired. Take the first step.
A marriage rule you can break: “Never go to bed angry.” Although generally this is a fine rule, there are times when all this accomplishes is a tired body. Sleeping on it can provide a cooling off period and help you get fresh perspective.
“For our 15th wedding anniversary, my wife took me mushroom hunting, and it was every bit as glamorous as you might imagine.” Fortunately, there was also a beautiful bed-and-breakfast and time away from the daily routine.
When you and your beloved are at loggerheads it’s hard to remember that your beloved is your beloved – not your enemy. He or she isn’t trying to be difficult; just trying to say that something is very important to him/her. Listen to the need.
Drawing on the example of Mary and the saints, the author offers helpful guidance for pregnancy, childbirth and baptism. She reflects on the mysteries of the rosary, offers simple faith practices, and explains an element of Catholic belief related to each chapter’s theme. A perfect gift for a newly pregnant friend or family member!