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How I Learned to Love My Husband Better
Learn to Meet HIS Needs
We learn by example, we watch as children how relationships develop, and many times we mimic what we saw growing up. When I met my husband I knew he was 'the one' for me. I had found my soul mate, and the rest would take care of itself right? I got to know him, and things got even better. Of course we had a few rough patches early on, but don't all relationships? I would just 'love him through it'. Sadly, it wasn't that easy. Relationships take hard work, and just because you want to marry someone doesn't necessarily mean you have the skills to be a part of that marriage. I had no idea what I was doing, and my belief that our love would carry us through anything was hurting my relationship, because that belief basically told me that I didn't need to pay attention to what was happening in my marriage. I just had to love my husband. Unfortunately that wasn't what he needed, there were many 'needs' my husband had that I wasn't meeting, and many needs I had that he wasn't meeting. However, our lack of communication skills, along with the examples we had growing up, left us both dumbfounded when things started to fall apart.
A Painful Realization
Sometimes we have epiphany's, sometimes we go through very painful situations which cause us to re-evaluate our lives. Sometimes we are lucky, and we are able to learn from someone else's mistakes.
Unfortunately, my husband and I were forced to learn about our marriage through a series of painful events. It wasn't until we completely fell apart that we were able to start building a new and better relationship. We started paying attention to each other's needs and not focusing so much on our own.
We had both believed that once we were married, life was supposed to get easy, smooth sailing. No longer were we looking for someone to spend our life with, we had found them...and that was that. Relationship work...over! We were good to go....right?!
Not so much.....
We came very close to losing each other, so close that something had to change drastically in our marriage in order for us to survive.
Here's What I Did-
I stopped expecting him to read my mind-
Women have a tendency to think that if they love their husbands, that somehow makes the husbands able to read their minds?! Funny how that NEVER seems to work. The fact is, when you need something from a man, he doesn't need subliminal messages, he won't see through the passive behavior, he needs you to TELL him. Not beat around the bush, TELL him. You want flowers for your anniversary, but you are afraid it will mean less if you have to TELL him? It won't. It will mean less, if you DON'T get the flowers that you want. So just tell him. It will save you both a lot of time and heartache.
I started to pay attention to HIS needs-
One night my husband and I decided to write down all of our needs (this is a great thing to do with your husband by the way). What he expected and wanted out of our relationship, surprisingly, wasn't as complicated as I was making it. I made a vow to love my husband, the way he asked to be loved, and here I was, assuming I knew what was right for him. When I started to meet his needs, something amazing happened. He wanted, really wanted, to meet mine. Our communication started to increase, and our love soared to new levels. I started to show more appreciation and respect, (even at times when I didn't feel like it) and he started to be more loving and communicative in return. We found an amazing rhythm.
I started to put our marriage first-
No, not your kids, not your mother, not your job. The most important relationship in your life is your marriage, and that deserves the most time and dedication. Whenever I made a decision, I made him a part of it, and I asked him what he thought. We started hobbies together, like hiking and playing old board games. Most importantly, I started to make time for us together, EVERY NIGHT, and we found an amazing intimacy in our marriage again.
I stopped expecting things to always go as planned-
Another key to creating a healthy balance in a relationship, is to not expect perfection from each other. We cannot expect every day to have that amazing rhythm that we created. It isn't always going to be sunshine and roses. However, we are a team ,and we are making it through the good, the bad, and the sometimes horrible times together.
The Light at the End of the Tunnel
Our relationship has grown so much from learning to love differently. By putting my marriage at the top of my list, the rest of my life has been much easier to manage, because I have my best friend at my side. Not everyday is perfect, and I no longer live with the expectations that it should be, but we are happier than we have ever been.