Hey all! Today is our first guest post at HappierHusband.com. It seems you only get MY perspective on our marriage and lessons learned. Get ready. Coming at you now, the love of my life, Sally Stoneking. Enjoy!
So your husband starts a blog about marriage and being a better husband. How would you feel about it? What do you think of it? I thought maybe some of you might be wondering about the other side of the story. I guess I will start from the beginning…
We met in college when I was almost 18 years old. He knew from the beginning that I was “the one.” I didn’t. Even though we had fun together and got along well, I kept letting different fears about the future and my own plans get in the way and broke off the relationship 7 times in the first year (I tell him that was his training period). Actually, he was a perfect gentleman from the start, and I wasn’t used to having someone open the car door for me every time I went to get in. He was also a lot more outgoing person than I was (and he still is). The day came when I finally realized how much I loved being around him and very soon we were engaged and then married.
The first couple of years were great! We were still in college and living the married life. A little over two years later, we had a baby, and life got more complicated. A few months later, Troy graduated and took a full-time teaching job that was salaried and included a few evenings per week as well. Suddenly, we had a baby and not much time together. We went from being together most of every day to hardly seeing each other.
It got rough! Being alone with a baby most of my days, I became an emotional mess. We had no family nearby and we mostly saw each other on weekends. Then we were introduced to the book “The Five Love Languages.” (From Troy – see The Book That Started It All for more information.) With baby #2 on the way, we started making time for each other. We joined a small group Bible study with a bunch of married friends from college. Troy got a different job that required only 40 hours per week and our quality time went back up. Making time for God and each other GREATLY improved our relationship!
(From Troy: In case you didn’t catch that, Sally’s primary love language is Quality Time. :-))
Just like most people, we have had ups and downs. We have both had days where we were irritable or exhausted. Thankfully, they weren’t always the same days, but sometimes they were. God taught us, though, that we need to respect and love each other no matter how we feel at the time. When we have a problem or one of us makes a mistake, we don’t blow up or start yelling at each other. That never solves problems, it only intensifies them. We try to be compassionate and show each other some grace and help in solving whatever situation or problem has come along, and there have been PLENTY. Sometimes we just need to let our spouse know we care about the issue they are dealing with regardless of whether or not we can help to change the situation.
The point is, life doesn’t always go how you planned and things are going to happen. You ARE going to have problems. How you choose to deal with them together is what is going to make your marriage stronger or weaker. We are each responsible for how we react to situations, we shouldn’t just rely on the other person to make it better for us.
It took me a lot of years, but I finally have given things over to God. Every once in a while fear and worry starts to poke their heads in again, but I am quickly reminded by the books I read, the Bible, my husband or sermons I listen to online that fear and worry do me no good. I just have to PRAY! I recently heard somewhere that if you are having a rough time in your relationship, instead of praying for your spouse to change, pray for God to give THEM the desires of their heart. When you start becoming less selfish and more concerned about the other person’s well-being and happiness, you will begin to be happier as well. Definitely check out the book, “The Five Love Languages” and apply what you read, you will notice a significant improvement.
So how do I feel about my husband writing a blog? I feel proud of him for doing something to make a difference! He is passionate about helping other people be successful in marriage and I support him in this 100%. I think he is following the path that God has laid out for him.
From Troy: Please let us know in the comments about your thoughts in relation to Sally’s post. I am incredibly proud of her for what she has written. It was unprompted by me and I’m SO glad she took the initiative. Love the post and love her!