At times, marriage can be a difficult path to tread. You fight, you go through dry spells in the bedroom and, if you’re not careful, you can end up on a one-way road to Resentment Ville.
But it doesn’t have to be that way.
Like a lot of things, marriage can be worked at and transformed into something truly magical.
Here, Redditors reveal their dos and don’ts for ensuring wedded bliss.
1. DON’T be resentful.
“Resentment is the single thing that ruins a relationship. Do whatever it takes to avoid it. Honesty and communication are good tools to avoid it.”
2. DO recognise that you are different people.
“They have a separate brain and self-awareness and perception of the world. They have a whole set of different life experiences, and consequently, a whole different way of seeing, reacting, and understanding.
“No, they aren’t going to do something exactly the way you would do it. No, their first instinct might not be your first instinct. No, they are not you. And you know what? That’s why you’re with them.”
3. DON’T joke about divorce.
“My wife and I have been married for 10 incredibly happy years. We also own our business and work together full time. When we got married my uncle told us to take the word ‘divorce’ out of our vocabulary. Don’t use it as a joke, even if you’re 100% kidding. It shouldn’t be a thought in your mind.”
4. DO communicate with them.
“Seriously fucking talk about stuff. Nine times out of 10 they weren’t trying to hurt or annoy you and they didn’t do it on purpose.”
5. DON’T let your family treat them badly.
“Even if your parents DESPISE your significant other, they should treat him or her with respect. Stick up for them. Be a united front. There are few things that can break down a relationship more quickly than taking sides.”
6. DO laugh together.
“My folks have been together for 40 years, so I asked my mom what their secret was. She said ‘humour’.
7. DON’T get hung up on sex.
“Sex is great but it’s over emphasised. Have lots of fun sex as a married couple but never think it’s why you are married. When it gets boring and utilitarian, don’t stress. It’ll probably get better eventually.
“Work it out. Sex is part of the long, loving conversation of marriage. It’s not the professional wrestling version of sex you see in porn.”
8. DO have a shared sense of purpose.
“Talk about why you live. Why you choose to work. Why you choose to marry. Talk through these big ideas often. Go back to them.”
9. DON’T be selfish.
“Do things for your significant other without an expectation to be repaid. Learn to love to have them happy. From my experience, they will do the same in return.”
10. DO show gratitude.
“Even for the smallest thing.”
11. DON’T be unkind.
“Even in fighting, even in anger. Be kind.”
12. DO learn to swallow your pride.
“At the end of the day, completely honest, level-headed, calm communication mixed with a huge dose of humility is the #1 best way to make a relationship work.”
13. DON’T keep score. Ever.
“It doesn’t matter if you did dishes last. If the dishes need doing and you have time, do them.”