I love being married– waking up next to my husband every morning, coming home and expecting him to arrive a little after I do from work–sharing, and doing things together–our daily routine. Marriage is a commitment and a journey two people agree to join in together for the rest of their lives. While it is wonderful, marriage is also hard. What makes it hard? Understanding and coping with your spouse’s habits for the rest of your life!
When my husband and I first moved in together, we never argued. In the early stages of our relationship, the positive feelings outweighed the negative, and I turned a blind eye to my husband’s faults. But over time, I noticed his annoying habits, which drove me crazy and caused us to argue regularly. After an awful disagreement last spring, I figured out the cause of our arguments– our habits.
Habits are rituals and behaviors that we do every day that allows us to carry out essential activities. We all have habits, and it is what makes us who we are. And when married for a long time, it is inevitable to sometimes become annoyed with your spouse’s habits–it is normal. I share below some guidelines my husband, and I’ve tried in the past year that helped understand and cope with each other’s habits.
1. Communicate, Understand, & Compromise
Voicing your opinion respectfully is the best way to communicate. If my husband and I hadn’t, we wouldn’t have figured out the reason for our arguments. It took several disagreements before actually sitting down and having a constructive conversation. But, immediately after, we had a clearer understanding of what was annoying us and worked through it to avoid future arguments. Discovering that we have different habits, we were able to compromise and work together to change the habits that can be changed and learn to accept those habits that can’t.
2. Make a list
Next time your spouse annoys you or have a disagreement, make a list of all the things you love about them. And every time you become annoyed, read the list and think about the positive aspects of your spouse instead of the negative.
3. Seek advice from someone you are close to and trust.
I suggest that you seek advice from someone you are close to, trust, and have your best interest. Stay away from those who are negative because their opinion will be subjective and not helpful in making your relationship better. My mom is who I speak to for advice. She had me realize that many of the arguments my husband and I had been nonsense and all would’ve been avoided if we’d sat down and talked.
4. Spend time apart– ‘me’ time
Spending time apart does not mean a break. It means that it is okay to have time for yourself and do things without your spouse. I recommend that you find hobbies and/or do activities that exclude your spouse and have ‘me’ time.
Habits are difficult to understand. But, if you love your spouse and can’t imagine living without them, there is nothing else to do but to try to work it out. The best way to start is by respectfully communicating being honest because it leads to understand and compromise with your spouse.