- Remember What Joined You Together
- Use the Opportunity to Improve Your Communication Skills
- Get Involved Together
|Relationship Restoring Counseling||
Has your social media page been inundated with left and right wing politics bantering back and forth about who is on the right or wrong about Trump? If so, you are not alone. To make matters worse so has my household. My husband and I went on a double date to a movie, and he wanted to give me all the latest political updates during the previews. I love my husband dearly, but no one interrupts my previews. All that to say there has been no escape for me. I am all about being educated about what’s going on in the world but for the only conversation to be about politics exhausts me. My husband and I, while we have similar values, we have different political views. Meaning he is extremely conservative while I am moderately conservative. You think this would not create arguments in the household over our views since we are both ultimately conservative but it did. From the start of the debate, my husband yelled and posted his strong views anywhere he could while I casually sat back and analyzed both sides of the argument. He was firm and set in his ways, and I was open for discussion if the argument seemed rational. The point being who wins an argument when agreeing to disagree does not work because it affects your daily living. I wanted to be as passionate as my husband was about his political views but I am all heart and compassion. I am a marriage counselor. I am trained to see things from both sides. Being extreme was not natural. It was not until I read an article that understood my heart that I was able to understand my husband and while the world was so divided. Simply stated, It is not Trump, It is us. We have forgotten how to be united as citizens of America and work toward a common cause. We have allowed what’s going on on the outside to pollute us on the inside. As the saying goes, a house divided falls. We as Americans have reduced ourselves to labels, divided ourselves accordingly, and harbor hate and resentment toward anyone that disagree with our views. After I had come to this realization, my first thought was how do I protect my marriage from the negative political debates and unite us as a family.
"As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:9
Recently, I had the pleasure of celebrating an anniversary with my husband. As I reflect on the last year I can’t help but see how God was in our untraditional courtship and marriage. For those of you who aren’t familiar with our story I met my husband June 1st and we were engaged July 3rd. Yes, that’s only a 33 day courtship. I constantly tease my husband about this because on our first date he assured me his plan was not to marry anytime soon. As quick as it was I wouldn’t change it for the world. Looking back over the year I learned a few things about marriage.
1. God’s plan for your marriage is always bigger and better than yours
If someone would have told me that my husband would be the “cool guy” and football would be a part of my life forever I would have declined. I am nerdy and proud and I am as unathletic as they come. My husband didn’t fit my “What I Want in a Husband List”. He didn’t have dark hair, he wasn’t nerdy, or 6ft 1in. However, God with all his love and humor saw fit to send me a man who not only is a football coach but is a gentlemen, loving, adventurous, and funny. I am pretty sure I got the better end of the deal with God’s list.
2. Communicate and Listen
My Bachelor’s degree is in Communications and Masters in Counseling so I have always prided myself on understanding the importance of seek first to understand then be understood. However, when I got married I didn’t grasp how much of what you understood changes when you truly began to understand where the other person is coming from. What I mean is as I really begin to focus more on understand where my husband was coming from and integrating it into what I understood to be true than holding on to how I understood the situation the easier it became to let the small things go and our ability to communicate effectively with each other grew.
3. Adapt, Change, Grow
The biggest thing marriage has done for me is allowed me to truly see myself. It’s given me to the ability to see the good and bad sides of myself and choose whether to change or stay the same. I have always been fascinated by the husband and wife dynamic of each couple I meet. I have always watched and listened to the way couples talk about each other in and out of each other’s presence. One thing I have always noticed is that happier couples are always willing to adapt and change and powerful couples are always able to be honest with each other. As I reflect on my own marriage I understood why it works. It works because it reaffirms that you are a unit and team. It affirms that your words have value and your spouse respects you and your opinion. This model also assures that you are growing as a person. In business when you fail or are lacking in a certain area you change so your company grows. Marriage is the same way. You adapt, you change, and your marriage grows.