Once during a casual conversation, a friend mentioned that being in the wedding industry must be better than before as divorce rates are rising, hence the industry will see more weddings than before when people marry again. We immediately jumped and objected. While commercially he may not be wrong, there is something like a special bond that makes us root for all our couples’ “happily ever after” after going through with them their wedding planning process.
We witness many couples ironing out issues throughout the wedding process and some times it is very meaningful when they share with us nuggets of how they deal with the issues. The highs AND the lows. It’s not just about the lows you know. Celebrating the highs the right way can drive the happiness level through the roof!
Many couples have asked us to share the secrets of staying happy as a couple and here’s what we have done.
We interviewed a few of our couples, friends and our team across all marriage stages – planning to wedding, newly weds, with and without kids, even those who had to go through the tough stage (you know what I mean). Here are some tips and lessons we have compiled to share. Hopefully any one of these could prove helpful when the time comes.
These may be the first two installments, but they will not be the last. We first start will the issues that pertain more to women and we will share the second post, which are advises and comments given by the men.
Here it goes:
Tips for her:
1) Resist the urge to keep complaining about his parents (aka the MIL and FIL)
The wedding planning process is a hot bed for disagreements. And guess what, it never ends at the wedding. “What? Nobody told me that!” “What happened to my happily ever after?!?”
Many brides cum daughter in laws find some level of difficulty in communicating effectively with their in laws, especially the MIL (mother-in-law). To be polite, they take it all in, feel miserable about it and they feedback/complain to their husbands after that, hoping that he would stand up for her or, express her stand without offending the in laws, or simply to “handle your parents”.
While your man might be keeping quiet or not talk back, it does not mean that he does not mind it at all. Imagine if it was you, and your spouse is constantly complaining to you about your parents, wouldn’t you feel offended or uncomfortably embarrassed?
Simply put yourself in his shoes. Vice versa for you men out there too if you are guilty of the above.
2) Know your bottom line and stick to it. Agree to disagree on issues
Yes sometimes we want to stick to our guns and get our point across (and hopefully win), pick your battles to fight. Know which issues to let go, and quit insisting on matters that at the end of the day, are not of critical importance to you, but may be for him.
3) If you cannot change him, change the way you look at it
What are you doing trying to change him to start off? Just because we women are willing to change for our men doesn’t mean that they will change ALL the issues on our TO-CHANGE check list. It doesn’t mean that they don’t care.
To expect a man to change into your prince charming is to set yourself up for disappointment. Instead, ask yourself what you really can or cannot live with, and change your perception towards the issue. Love him for who he is, for he isn’t perfect, and neither are you and I.
4) Who exactly is at fault or wrong should not be the number 1 focus
Everyone comes from a different background, with different values, and during times of differences, will stand on different grounds. The fact is, as a couple when one loses, both lose. When both are happy and work as one, both win by a factor more than just 1+1.
5) Give face when you have to
We are all for girl power at where we are, but one strength of women is to be able to stand up and back off to maneuver the delicate balance of strength and gentleness to achieve goals. Note: not to manipulate, but to exercise EQ.
Like it or not, the Asian society still does place a premium on “face”. Depending on how your guy is like, we have been advised by some wives to give their husbands face, especially in public. And hey, no all the time people really need to know who the real winner is *winks*
Moving on to next stage of your lives with kids
1) Even after having kids, abstain from having your conversation topics revolve around kids and household chores and related issues
A marriage is a marathon, not a sprint. To keep the flames burning long and strong, you will have to engage each other on different levels, not just what you are facing on a day-to-day basis
– His wife who will always be with him dependably, take care of him and the family;
– His soul mate who will always understand him and he will be able to talk to you about anything;
– His best friend who he will always be able to have fun with, the one who he will always want to travel with and share good news with;
– His confidante who he can tell his darkest secrets and insecurities and will not judge him no matter what; and
– His mistress who will always adore him and not tie him down with the troubles of life
Play the different roles right. Yes you can, and while you are at it, have a heck of a time doing it!
And if there are men reading this now, please do this for your wife too, pretty please 🙂
2) Never stop finding common goals and topics despite no obvious similar interests
Many online articles tell us that we should find common interests and activities to do together as a couple. The thing is, sometimes it is hard to find common activities. E.g. Shopping, soccer, fishing, watching soapy dramas – these are all activities that tend to be more interesting to a gender than their other half’s. Congrats to those who have similar activities that both enjoy.
For the rest of us, always find a common goal that both are aligned towards. This will create a lot more common topics to talk about and ensure that you both have something in similar to look forward to. It can be a financial goal, a career goal, a life goal or something both can work towards for. Sure the paths both may take might differ, but as long as the end point remains clear, it will create a magical bond that brings two closer together.
Hope you enjoyed the first post of the series, which was contributed from our team and customers, gearing more towards the women. Look out for the next post where the men speak up! Stay tuned.
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