“Marriage is not 50/50; marriage is 90/10, both ways.”
This was just one piece of advice we collected at Kara’s bridal shower. At each seat, one of the bridesmaids, Macy, set an index card and pen for guests to jot down their words of wisdom for the soon-to-be newlyweds. This piece of advice in particular stuck with me because it makes so much sense. For someone who has spent a good deal of time browsing Pinterest and other blogs for wedding ideas and advice, most of what I’ve seen is all about how wives should pray for their husbands. Okay. That’s great and all, but since when is it just one person’s job to support, encourage, and build up a marriage? It seems to me that there are two people involved in this commitment, and while I know that a majority of Pinterest users are women, I’m left to wonder where to find the other part of this equation.
Recently, I found the answer I was looking for and something that the Internet has been lacking: the husband’s perspective. Even better, its from someone I’ve known for a very long time and with whom I’ve had the pleasure to work. Eric Dingler is the Director of Camp Aldersgate, a Methodist summer camp in Eastern Ohio, and in the last few years, he has added the titles of blogger and speaker. In one of his recent blog posts, Eric wrote about ideas for husbands to keep their marriages strong and growing. He discussed things that you should be telling your spouse, including that you would choose them all over again. (After reading that, I told Brian that I would choose him again, because, well… I would. Totally.)
Here are some of the other ways Eric suggested husbands (or wives or partners) show their significant others how much they care:
- NEVER leave the house without kissing her…even if you are going out to mow the lawn.
- Text her randomly throughout the day that you love her.
- Just tell her, “I’d choose you again.”
- Leave her notes.
- Write her a letter for your next anniversary. Seal it, hang it on the fridge and tell her she can open it on that day. In the letter, tell her how you feel.
I really like the idea of writing a letter for each other for your next anniversary. Its similar to one of the newer “unity” acts for wedding ceremonies, where each person writes a letter to the other. At the ceremony, the couple puts the letters, along with a bottle of wine, into a wooden box and nail it shut, only to open it for their first (or fifth, or tenth, or whatever) anniversary. Another idea he mentions is to name a star for your partner. The boyfriend in a couple I know from high school did that for his girlfriend when they were juniors; they’ll be celebrating their second anniversary this summer.
I encourage you to check out Eric’s blog and be sure to read about the other ways to build up your marriage. He writes about marriage, family, and leadership.
Any recommendations for how to build up a marriage and support each other?