It's easy to fall in love, but it is difficult to stay in love. Marriage is an institution based on love, partnership, care, respect, romance, acceptance, and understanding. Sustaining a relationship is not so easy even for those who are ready to do all possible hard work. It is even difficult when you are newly married. When you marry someone, it's not just an alliance of two-person, it's a coalition of two families. It’s an even bigger responsibility for the groom's side family because a new person is coming into their life. The initial 1-2 years of any marriage are crucial because it’s the time when a lot of changes and adjustments happen in both families.
If you want to keep your relationship solid for years to come, learn these expert tips from couples who have been married for 50 years. We tried to address those important points and issues that happen in the early days of all marriages.
(1) Give some time
It is the most important thing in any marriage. Giving some time to adjust and understand the person. Don’t expect them to change overnight according to your family or personality. You are either entering into a new family or a new member (from a different background) is coming to your family. It’s a drastic change for them. It takes a long time to unlearn and relearn, specially when you are an adult. DO NOT react to their mistake, instead help them.
(2) Learn to adjust and respect
Adjustment is something that helps many marriages to go for years and it applies to all levels of marriages. When you learn to adjust to the next person’s life, it’s a sign of respect. And in return, you do the same, readjustment and let them feel comfortable. Having an obstinate mindset can ruin the relationship and will end up in worse results.
If you think you are not a flexible person, then it is a wrong perception. We all are born flexible by personality and we display at a different time of life, by our choice. So in the same way you should also be flexible for your partner. It's not like you are always right or other people are always wrong, learn to accept things in a new way. Be open to new ideas and rituals. Also, avoid telling them to change every second thing in their life. You can not mold them into another human being just in a few months. It’s a process that takes time, a long time.
(4) Do not comment on families and their customs
Many time couple and their families target each other's families and that hurt both sides equally. You will totally lose the respect and faith from the other side. Every family tries their best to raise a child in their best way. They give their all possible efforts to make them perfect. But we never can be perfect and this is not the fault of anyone’s family, it's your mistake and wrong expectation.
(5) Lower your expectations
Continuing the previous point, your expectations make you uncomfortable and upset. Why would you expect things in your own ways with your partner? Learn to accept them the way they are. Remember expectations and comparisons are the major reason behind all grief. Your partner would always try their best to adjust, but this doesn’t mean they would change completely. No one would like to leave their identity, and you should respect that.
(6) Talk about the challenges, avoid assuming them
When you have a problem, talk!! Don’t enter into a dead silence mode. Do not talk about your personal problems to other people or post useless statuses on social media. It’s a problem between you and your partner (or their family), you better sit down and talk about the problem and possible solutions. Assuming “this and that” can ruin the faith and love in any relationship. If you are not comfortable talking face to face then simply write it in the message in a simple way. Remember not to point out anything rudely or in a bad way. Take a simple path, talk politely and discuss like a mature person. Fighting cannot solve to problem, it will just make it more difficult. Never use any abusive words or uncomfortable or insulting jokes or comments. Your words represent your personality, present them wisely.
(7) Don’t be rude to your partner for their mistakes
Many times you feel it so deeply that you can not control your emotions and burst into the wrong ways. Misbehaving leaves long-lasting scars on the heart. You can not revert it once said. If you are feeling so much angry about something then prefer not to talk at that time, just walk out. Go for a sleep, walk or watch something that gives you some laughter (to increase your dopamine) and then talk. Remember, marriage and love are also about living with someone’s imperfections, not just perfections.
(8) Never ask them to share their privacy, let them do it willingly
This is another mistake that most couples do, demand to open up their privacy. It's an intrusion into anyone’s personal space, which is not right. You must have to have faith in your partner, you can not and should not force them to share passwords or other financial stuff. It's entirely their choice to share or not.
(9) Take your decision by yourself, stop involving your family members
When you are married, you are an adult, so behave like one and learn to take responsibility. You need not to talk with your other family members about every second decision. Instead, talk to your partner ask for their opinion. This gives a sense of reliance to them and makes the relationship stronger.
(10) Your bride is not a servant to your family, treat her properly
It’s a quite generalized perception that the bride should know and do all household chores. Gone are those days when women were only “housewives”. You are living in the 21st century and she deserves all freedom. She is your life partner, not a servant to cater to your or your family's needs. Hire a servant instead. You will have great peace of mind and more time to understand your partner and marriage.
(11) Give some time for the romance, specially when it is an arranged marriage
If your partner is not comfortable do not try to force it. Lovemaking is a process when you share the affection, not just impose it. First give some time to understand each other, specially when your marriage is arranged. Go for dates, long walks, share your feelings, open your heart. First, try to be a good friend than a husband or wife. This way you will be more comfortable to proceed.
(12) Learn to say sorry and acknowledge the good things
Saying sorry will not deteriorate your reputation, instead it will solve the problem and develop your relationship positively. It’s a common mistake, not to say sorry. It doesn’t harm anyone, but yes your ego. And remember ego has no place in any marriage. Whatever you are in the outside world, it doen’t matter in your house. You are a husband or wife when you come home. Accepting your mistakes and apologizing for them make you humble and tolerant and that’s the most important trait that a couple needs to maintain the marriage for long.
(13) Be a giver, not a taker
Givers are the best couple. When you want to give anything, (it can be love, money, food, emotions, respect, care) it makes you the giver. But you both need to learn to be a giver. If either of you is a taker, then it's an imbalance and will not last long.
(14) Dowry is not your birthright
Yeah, you read it right, it’s not. Be a man, and take responsibility along with your partner. A family has given you their member whom they have raised with loads of love and care. And over that, you ask for money and assets to marry her? Raise your voice against these pseudo-social dogmas, be the change and say no to dowry. Both husband and wife are the main pillars of marriage and either of them should not feel like an asset in the family.
(15) Don’t snoop on each other
Checking your partner’s mobile or emails is a major invasion of privacy and a violation of trust. You and your family don’t acquire any level of freedom to snoop in your partner’s personal space. If you feel something negative in their action, then just sit down and talk about it.
(16) Have some private time
If you want to bring more intimacy to your relationship, stop surrounding yourself with relatives, friends, and family members all the time. Go for outings, talk about romantic things, give surprises, do small things to make each other happy and feel loved. These private moments will be your beautiful memories, create them nicely.
(17) Never gossip to other people about your personal life
Your newly married life and its challenges are not a piece of news that you broadcast to every second person in the world. You talk about them in the family and solve them. Remember 80% of people do not care about your problems and the remaining 20% are happy that you have problems. So better solve them by yourselves. Else take the help of a professional marriage counselor.
Marriage is a very beautiful institution where two people and families accept and respect each other. We have done extensive study and discussion to draft this article, hope it helped you to understand the challenges. Initial years of marriage will be the foundation of your marriage, try to make it a lovely memory. Never allow your unnecessary expectations and family or societal pressure to ruin it. You have the choice, choose the right way so that you would go far together as a family and partner.