Category

Communication

3 Pre-Marriage Challenges and How to Handle Them

By | Communication, Self Reflection | 10 Comments

When you’re dating or engaged, the pre-marriage period leading up to the wedding can feel excruciatingly long. On top of that, this time in your life carries its own unique challenges. How can you and your significant other navigate these challenges successfully? Today, we’re sharing three common issues that couples face during dating and engagement. Let’s jump in! 1. Help! Our mentors don’t think we should marry. It’s difficult to learn that someone you look up to, like a trusted friend or your pastor, doesn’t support the marriage you’ve been planning. But when someone you trust raises a red flag…

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How to Share More Prayer with Your Spouse

By | Communication, Self Reflection, Time | 7 Comments

Prayer is an essential part of life as a Christian that connects you to directly to God. Incorporating regular prayer in your marriage is a powerful way to not only deepen your relationship with Him, but also with one another. It’s a tool to increase intimacy and grow spiritually. Life is busy. We understand how difficult it can be to take time for daily prayer on your own–and how much more challenging it is to incorporate your equally-busy spouse into that routine. Luckily, there are several ways the two of you can make more time to pray together, and we’re…

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Zip Your Lips: How to Protect Your Marriage’s Privacy

By | Communication, Conflict | 14 Comments

It’s a challenge to deal with an “overly-disclosing” spouse. If this sounds familiar, your spouse may mean no harm…yet they regularly manage to tell their friends or family things you’d rather keep private. We (Leslie and I) struggled with this issue early in our marriage. For Leslie, talking about things I didn’t want repeated outside our marriage was just her way of connecting with her friends. She wasn’t trying to be hurtful…yet, it made me feel sad and violated. Luckily, there’s a happy ending to our dilemma. Because Leslie didn’t want to be the reason I clammed up and stopped…

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Tips for Navigating Difficult In-Law Relationships – Part 2

By | Communication, Conflict, In-laws & Family | 10 Comments

Most married couples are uncomfortably familiar with some level of stress when it comes to their in-laws. Maybe you’re dealing with invasion of your privacy, criticism, or jealousy, to name a few issues. The bottom line is, you married one another’s families when you married each other–now, you need to be able to work together to navigate the difficult situations that may arise from time to time. This week, we’re completing our two-part series on challenging in-law relationships. (If you missed part 1, you can catch up here.) Read on to learn a few more ways you and your spouse…

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How to Overcome Communication Barriers in Your Marriage

By | Communication | 6 Comments

It’s common for each spouse in a marriage to have his or her own style and preferences for communicating, especially when it comes to expressing our feelings. At times, this can create major barriers in getting through to one another. But if we’re able to work together to overcome those barriers, we’ll cultivate a closer, more loving marriage. A matter of hard-wiring and personality Sometimes, communication barriers are an issue of gender and physiological wiring. Research shows that men, in general, tend to have difficulty putting their feelings into words. Many men don’t have an innate need to make their…

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Help! My Spouse is a Control Freak! What Do I Do?

By | Communication, Conflict | 7 Comments

There are few intimacy killers as potent as controlling behavior. Control is a problem we see on a spectrum, ranging from spouses who are simply nitpicky over one or two parts of their lives to spouses who engage in destructive behavior. Most control issues fall somewhere in the middle and stem from your spouse’s anxiety about one or more parts of your life. When we read between the lines, we often understand that the controlling spouse’s motivation is something like, “I love you so much, I want you to be aware of these few things that aren’t perfect.” If your…

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Opposite Sex Friendships: 3 Scenarios and What to Do

By | Communication, Conflict, Self Reflection | 32 Comments

It can be a challenge to balance the intimacy of our marriages with the other important friendships in our lives. This is especially true if we have close friends of the opposite gender. While same-sex friendships tend to be easy to nurture after we’re married, there’s an entirely different set of considerations when it comes to having opposite-sex friends. The first question to ask ourselves is, where are we going to invest our energy and focus? Obviously, our marriage is the most precious relationship to protect. Outside of that, we have to decide how we’re going to approach our other…

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Creative Ways to Approach Your Spouse’s Quirks

By | Communication, Conflict | 8 Comments

One of marriage’s greatest gifts is the gift of feedback. Through providing one another with constructive feedback, we can grow into the best version of ourselves. Being married is a lot like looking into a mirror that reflects back the best and worst parts of us. On one hand, we share our life with someone who can support and encourage our strongest qualities. On the other, that same person can make us aware of places where we fall short so we can course-correct when we need to. The trick with feedback is knowing when and how to give it–particularly when…

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Driven to Distraction: What to Do When Your Spouse Doesn’t Listen

By | Communication, Conflict | 16 Comments

One of the most frustrating issues to face in marriage is having a spouse who doesn’t seem to listen to you. And it’s a common problem; many spouses complain that their husband or wife just doesn’t retain important information–even to the point of not remembering it was discussed in the first place. If this sounds like your marriage, don’t worry; there are several mindset shifts and strategies you can use to improve the situation and get yourself heard when it’s most critical. Want to know more? Read on. Remember that your spouse probably isn’t tuning you out on purpose Chances…

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3 Major Relationship Challenges: What to Do

By | Communication, Conflict | 6 Comments

Marriage relationships come in all forms, each with its own set of challenges. No couple gets through life without experiencing a potentially relationship-altering situation or dynamic. Some are temporary; others are long-lived and may last for the rest of your lives. Luckily, there are constructive ways to approach these situations. It might require a little creativity, a lot of strategy, and an overabundance of grace, but you and your spouse can navigate major challenges, overcome them, and continue to cultivate the lifelong love we all desire. Let’s dive into three possible scenarios today. 1. We got married not wanting kids…but…

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