Now a lot of married couples would probably tell you that they can talk to their spouse about anything. But is that really true? I’ve actually come across a lot who have a hard time even bringing certain subjects up in their own marriages. Cross-check this list and see if these subjects come up regularly in your own marriage. If they don’t- maybe it’s time they should!
7 Things Healthy Married Couples Talk About Openly and Freely
You knew this was going to be in this post somewhere, so might as well get it out of the way. While a lot of married couples have one person who is more “financially minded” (that would be me in our marriage) it’s uber important to be on the same page with your spouse about your finances. This includes this like: what you spend your money on, how much money you spend on those things, what your savings goals are, etc. Of course those are really broad, but as a rule of thumb, the more open you are about money and the more you’re able to stay on the same page, the less frustrated you’ll be later.
Being the financial person in our marriage, Josh used to trust me with all things finances and never checked our bank account- like never. And being an impulsive person, this wasn’t always the best thing for our savings account. Not that I would spend much at all, but I found myself making lots of little impulsive purchases here and there that would really add up at the end of the month. Things like gourmet coffees from over-priced coffee shops, new clothes and makeup from Target that I didn’t really need, snacks that probably only looked good because I went shopping hungry- that kind of stuff. But- I realized that what I was doing was hurting our bank account. So I asked him to check in on it here and there. Now, knowing that my husband actually looks at our bank statements and wouldn’t support my decision to buy yet another outfit from Target, I have an easier time putting it back on the rack than I used to. And our bank account is happier this way as well. The same principle has always applied to him, it’s just an equal playing field now.
My point is, while one person in your relationship might be better at handling money, both you and your spouse should have a good idea of where your money goes. That’s all.
The other day I was speaking with a married woman who I have been close to for a long time. She told me that she tries to communicate with her husband, but there seems to be a wall there. Although she’s able to ask him to change and do something differently in their relationship, and he doesn’t reject her when she asks, she still never actually sees the changes she asks for. So while my friend is being open with her husband about what she would like to see change (which is great!) she feels extremely hurt by the fact that her requests are being ignored.
Knowing her husband, like many other husbands, I don’t think he is intentionally trying to ignore my friend. He’s actually a really good husband- and she thinks so too. But what my friend finds hard to do is express how her husband’s actions (or lack thereof) are hurting her. Yes, she’s told him what she would like to see change, but when the change never came, she has a hard time letting him know how that makes her feel. And having a good husband who does most other things right can make it even harder at times to let him know that he is disappointing you in this one way that actually matters a lot.
My advice to her and women who find themselves in similar situations is to tell your husband how his actions are making you feel. He may simply not realized how important your request is and by letting him know that his actions hurt he’ll be given the second chance to understand the importance of what you’re asking and then hopefully, follow through!
3. Bedroom Stuff
And I’m not just talking about the sheets you put on your bed. A lot of people come to and seek out other marriage blogs for advice on how to handle certain things in the bedroom. Which is totally fine and great! But marriage blogs can only give you so much advice for your life behind the bedroom doors. The rest is really going to be up to you and that spouse of yours.
Talking openly about your sex life is easier the earlier you start, but this can be done later in life, and you can get to the point where you feel comfortable doing it- with practice. If this is something that doesn’t come naturally to your in your spouse, but you want to try to talk about it more, start light. Be sure that you and your hubby are in a comfortable setting and don’t lay whatever is on your mind too heavy on him if this is not something you usually talk about. Try to keep it light at first and listen to what he has to say about sex as well. Then, after you both become more comfortable talking openly about your sex life, don’t be afraid dive a little deeper, always remembering to keep it an open discussion.
4. Funny things
Many marriages fall apart for many different reasons. A lot of those reasons have to do with the standards and confrontation and honesty we talked about above. But, marriages can also fall apart even when it seems as though there is nothing structurally wrong at all.
In my experience, marriages can sneakily begin to disintegrate when a couple forgets how to laugh together. I’ve even gone through a period like this (specifically when our son was very young). To be honest, I was tired and stressed out and still adjusting to being a mommy who was needed at what seemed like every second of every day. Laughter began to seem like a distraction from getting the things done on my very long to-do list and I began to ignore it or even find it frustrating when my husband would try to have fun with me.