Guest Post by Kathleen E. Shaul
Divorce attorneys talk to their clients and get background information on what the party believes has caused them to file for divorce. Clients share many details about themselves and their partners and the demise of a marriage. Even though the information they divulge to their attorney may be one-sided and from their point of view, it still gives attorneys an insight as to why their marriage may have failed. This being said, it makes divorce attorneys one of the most knowledgeable professions to pass on advice on how to have a happy marriage and family.
Living Happily Ever After is a Fairytale
The ending statement in many fairy tales is that a couple got married and lived happily ever after. This definitely does not happen in real life. A marriage is always a work in progress from the first day and every day after. Things in life change, without change we would all be in the same place for life without adding children to a family, getting promotions, changing professions and buying a new home. All of these items can cause great stress in a marriage simply due to the changes that happen with each event. Everyone should realize that change is imminent and can’t be avoided, so both parties in a marriage have to know that they will need to be versatile with changes.
Your Spouse is Number One
Many times when a married couple has a child, the child gets the majority of the attention and the mother generally does most of the caretaking of the child. The mother does need to nurture, feed, bathe and take care of the child, leaving much less time for her spouse. At times, the husband may feel like he is of less value because his wife spends so much time with the baby and has little time when she isn’t exhausted left for him. This can weigh heavily on any relationship. This life-changing event should be a happy time in a marriage. It helps if both parents share in some of the duties of childrearing and if they share some of the tasks associated with it. Make certain that you take time to communicate on a daily basis.
Make a Date Night
After a couple has a child or children, it helps to make a date night. Get a babysitter and make date night once a week if possible. Just going to dinner or a movie or having time for the couple only at home can greatly improve a relationship. When a relationship first starts without children, the couple has time just to themselves to talk and share time together. Date night can be doing something fun together such as taking a painting class, dance lessons or go play bingo together. It doesn’t matter what the activity is or where you do it, only that you have time to yourselves.
Delegate Authority to Your Spouse
Most couples need to have two incomes to survive and they both work outside the home. When they both get home, there are more things to do, such as take care of the children, make supper and clean. Wives often do all of the duties after returning home from a full-time job and then become overwhelmed at some point. If a wife delegates some authority to her spouse, it will reduce her frustration. If the husband can’t cook at all, but doesn’t mind washing dishes, then allow him to do so. Maybe your husband is better at record-keeping and paying bills. If this is the case, delegate that authority to him. Basically, a couple should write down all of the duties that make the household run and divide them up so that each person has some of the chores or duties. Take into consideration the hours that each spouse works and the times they leave and get home each day.
Be Your Spouse’s Cheerleader
Everyone wants to feel that they are needed and special. When a marriage is new, couples usually are very happy for each other’s accomplishments in their work. This may fade after several years of marriage. Many spouses stray from their marriage because they don’t feel needed and they get more praise from another person outside of the marriage. Don’t be afraid to boost your spouse’s ego by complimenting them often. Small comments such as “Dinner was good,” “You look nice today,” or anything positive goes a long way in a marriage.
Don’t Bottle Up Feelings
Many spouses get aggravated at something that causes them worry in their marriage. It can be something they misconstrue about the other party. When something is bothering you, it’s best to discuss it with your spouse at the first opportunity you can. Bottling up feelings makes them grow bigger and causes you extreme stress. At times, this can lead to an explosive conversation at a much later date when you could have discussed it calmly with your partner.
Seek Counseling if it is Needed
Many couples will realize that they are getting frustrated with the marriage in early years of its existence. Most will not seek marriage counseling until they are already at the breaking point. It isn’t admitting defeat if you attend marriage counseling. A counselor works best if you contact them when things start to go awry and don’t wait until the marriage is already broken. Counselors help couples to look at themselves and understand the others feelings and actions. By delving deep into the thoughts of both, a counselor can help couples to have the understanding so that both parties can make changes and save a marriage. The most important aspect of couples counseling is that both attend the same sessions with the counselor.
As a divorce attorney, you can teach all of these values to encourage healthy interactions between couples in a marriage and keep the relationship feeling new and exciting as it was in the beginning.
Learn How to Have a Happy Marriage and Family from Divorce Attorneys
Divorce attorneys have seen all bad relationships due to many circumstances. It may sound a bit odd, but a divorce attorney can help you to maintain a happy marriage and family life as well as a marriage counselor.
Kathleen E. Shaul is a highly-skilled divorce and family attorney based in St. Louis, Missouri. She has been practicing family law in St. Louis since 1995 and is dedicated to providing the highest quality legal representation for families.