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Treat Your Marriage Like A Treasured Pet

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Many people have pets that they dote on. They spend endless hours feeding, grooming, praising, talking to, cleaning up after and enjoying the company of their pets. Do we treat our marriages like we would treat a treasured pet?

There are three things that cause trouble and can ultimately kill a marriage.

  1. Selfishness. It affects how we talk to each other, how we divide responsibilities in the home, how we resolve conflicts, and even how we spend our time.
  1. Lack of Forgiveness. Holding on to a past hurt, mistake, or slight becomes a weapon that you can drag out at any time and use to hold your partner hostage.
  1. Expectations. Within your mind you have a picture of how you or your partner should act as a husband or wife, father or mother. And chances are this image is so perfect, so idyllic, that it is completely unattainable.

Even if they’ve taken over your marriage, even if you have decided your marriage is lifeless, It’s never too late to make a decision to change.

How do we break those damaging marriage killers?

Start treating your marriage like a living, breathing pet you are responsible for keeping alive. 

Feed Your Marriage. No matter how hard their day has been dog lovers always give their furry friends a warm hello, a belly rub, and maybe a walk around the block. Think what it would do for your relationship if you always gave your partner a hug and a kiss, and spent a half-hour together after work.

Forgive your partner. Dogs and cats occasionally pee in the house, steal your socks, chew up your favorite pair of shoes, or throw up on the carpet. We don’t withhold love or affection from them. We don’t continuously scold them for the one time they chewed up the slippers. We forgive them because we love them so much. So when your partner makes you mad, tell them calmly why you're upset and address the problem, then forgive them completely, move on and continue to give them your love and affection freely.

Groom Your Partner. Rather than viewing your partner with a critical mindset, groom them with praise. When your husband pitches in and helps with household chores, say “Thank You”. When your wife has had a hard day but cooks a delicious meal anyway, say, “Honey, this meal is delicious.” 

Be kind to your partner. Research has shown that taking more loving actions actually makes you feel more in love and fosters a deeper level of intimacy. In any interaction with your partner, whether it’s personal or practical, try to be kind in how you express yourself. This softens your partner, even in heated moments.

Communicate with your partner. Don’t assume your partner knows what you are thinking or show should know when to do this or that. You need to talk to your partner and let them know what you need. If you do not like something they have done or you want them to do something, you need to talk to them about it.

Spend time with and enjoy your partner. Make time each day to spend with your partner. Plan dates and activities together. The more time you spend together doing things you enjoy and talking, the more intimately you will begin to know your partner.

Long-term solutions to the most common relationship struggles.

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