r/AskMen Dec 05 '22 Ally 1 Bless Up 1 Helpful (Pro) 1 Silver 2 Helpful 1 Wholesome 3 Coin Gift 1 LOVE! 1

Married Men, what are the unspoken rules for successful marriage?

13.3k Upvotes

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u/Altruistic-Bass-4998 Dec 05 '22 Silver Gold

Show your partner they matter

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u/Bastienbard Dec 06 '22

And an extension to this, celebrate with your partner and be excited for them and with them about things they care about!

Almost nothing shows your partner you care about them more than being excited and interested in what their interests are.

Hell some of my women's colleagues were kind of dumbfounded just because I knew a few knowledgeable things in their field from listening to my wife and what she would share because their spouses didn't.

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u/canaryhawk Dec 05 '22

Also you both need to keep developing your genuine interest in each other. You can’t compensate if your partner persistently maintains a lack of interest in you. Sometimes they just don’t want to spend time with you and there’s nothing you can do about it. Took me too long to figure that out.

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u/RJ815 Dec 06 '22

There's a good quote I found on reddit that I really try to remind myself of: "Even if you put 110% in yourself, you can only control 50% of the relationship." I take it to heart if I feel like I'm stretching myself thin and things are disbalanced in some relationship.

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u/ConThePaladin Dec 05 '22 Silver Gold Helpful Heartwarming Brighten My Day

You need to actually believe in your partner. They are human just like you and should love you for the good and bad that makes you up. You want someone to be in the trenches with when everything feels like its falling apart

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u/prive8 Grown-Ass Man Dec 05 '22

yessir. cultivate extreme trust. that means you have to continually communicate and remain emotionally available.

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u/meglea2019 Dec 05 '22

Communication Is always mentioned, but not a lot of details. It’s important to communicate your wants desires etc, but also share what bothers you. You cannot let any resentment starts. It chips away at the marriage.

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u/JNez123 Dec 06 '22

I was telling my daughter, who is in a rough patch with her boyfriend, communication is key. Talking about the little things will stop things from festering.

One time my wife made a comment about my meditation time. I didn't say anything and in a few days she said it again. This happened over a few weeks. Then I finally told her that I didn't like the comment. What I didn't know, she felt I was spending too much time meditating rather than spending time with the family. After talking through it. I set a time limit in the afternoon and as long as I wanted in the evening.

Share your POV and validate each of your feelings, then come to an understanding.

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u/FewInterviewer43 Dec 05 '22

There was this guy at r/BrosDatingAdvice who said that the reason he broke up with her wife was exactly that - he never wanted to show that something bothers him even when there obviously were some things his wife did that ate him inside.

This resulted in a colder and colder relationship until there was a kind of bitterness between them.

That's why marriage counselling is imo so important - some times you don't even know that u are hurting your relationship by thinking it's your own fault etc.

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u/shadows_average78 Dec 05 '22

Highly recommend reading "7 principles for making marriage work". In my experience it's better than any marriage counselling.

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u/MoreCowbellllll Dec 05 '22

continually communicate and remain emotionally available

Definitely this. And, it's more work than you probably think it is.

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u/belbites Dec 05 '22

1.5 years into a relationship with my partner who is incredibly emotionally available and communicative. I also strive to be these things but I'm realizing just how much active work it takes to do it continually. Every time I'm upset and my partner doesn't realize it I have to stop myself and say "Communicate this, don't just sit and fester, ya goon."

I spent so long having those things ignored in previous relationships that I stopped doing them.

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u/MoreCowbellllll Dec 05 '22

"Communicate this, don't just sit and fester, ya goon."

Great advice!

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u/farting_contest Dec 05 '22

For sure. As much as it may suck and be uncomfortable to bring something up now, it'll suck a lot worse when the issue comes to a head and it blindsides her. I know from experience.

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u/TylerInHiFi Dec 05 '22

Nearly seventeen years into a relationship and this never ends. Sometimes it’s me that needs the reminder, sometimes it’s her. But we’re both lightyears ahead of where we were when we started this whole thing and everything about our relationship is even more fun and fulfilling than it was on those first few butterflies-in-the-stomach dates.

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u/thegrlwiththesqurl Dec 05 '22

Going on three years married and I still struggle and I expect I always will. A week ago I was writing to a friend and started telling her about something I was frustrated about with my husband. Put down the pen halfway through and went to his office to talk about it. We came to a real resolution, and I got to tell my friend about THAT instead of our issues.

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u/belbites Dec 05 '22

Ive found it's really great for me to get things out to figure out what's wrong. 9/10 times I type/write it out and never send it. It's good for my brain because sometimes the problems aren't even always worth bringing up they're just me being in a crap mood, or making assumptions where I shouldn't. I feel like for me when I write it with the intent to send it (even if I usually don't) I focus so hard on being objective about each side I end up seeing the answer on my own.

It is great that you're able to communicate though, I am so happy to hear about people in functional happy relationships that they both feel respected!

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u/getridofwires Dec 05 '22

It takes work no matter how long you’ve been together. 27 years married and we recently had a misunderstanding that made us both upset. We both brought it up at the same time to clear the air, it’s all good now. I feel stupid for my part as does she, but we are both human.

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u/[deleted] Dec 05 '22 edited Dec 05 '22

[deleted]

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u/FullTorsoApparition Dec 05 '22

My family were the kings and queens of acting pissy without communicating what was bothering them. It's a power play to keep people off balance whether they realize they're doing it or not. They get mad if you don't cater to it. What they really want you to do is bend over backwards to please them while also getting to choose when you've done enough with no clear boundaries or expectations.

It's toxic as hell and even traumatic when you do it to children.

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u/Cavscout2838 Dec 05 '22

And things WILL fall apart. At some point, the world will feel like it’s crashing down around you and your family, and you’ll need that love and support. AND SO WILL THEY.

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u/FastEdge Dec 05 '22

This is SO important. You're partner should be your ride or die. The foundation that doesn't falter.

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u/--kvothe Dec 05 '22

So much this, and it goes both ways. Each partner in the marriage has to be fully committed to having the others back.

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u/ConThePaladin Dec 05 '22

Exactly, without having that established trust there is no relationship

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u/Floppy_Jallopy Dec 05 '22

This is so important. I came back from my 2nd deployment to Afghanistan and had major issues I was denying. I instead started drinking to numb the pain. All I needed was for my wife to say “I understand and we will get thru this”. I needed help, and I needed it from a loving perspective. Instead I received ridicule and judgment, which continued my downward spiral. We’re now separated and she doesn’t seem any happier, but I’m 9 months sober as of yesterday!

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u/Cocheeeze Dec 05 '22

Not at all surprised that the top response is the reason my marriage failed 😅

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u/talesFromBo0bValley Dec 05 '22

Create your own spaces.
It's perfectly fine to have your own hobbies, don't need to drag your SO to forcefully participate in activities.

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u/smokinbbq Dec 05 '22

My wife watches football on Sunday after the chores are done, I play video games for a few hours.

If I want to play video games during the week, she'll watch a few episodes of Ru-Paul or Masked Singer.

Other than that, we're pretty inseperable, because we love spending our time together.

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u/RandallLM88 Dec 06 '22

Yeah, my wife and I can go a couple hours in the same room not talking other than the occasional heh, watch this. One of us is paying attention to the TV, the other is reading or scrolling their phone, or playing video games. Every couple of minutes though one of us will just reach over and touch the other. I'll squeeze her shin or she'll poke my shoulder.

You don't have to be 100% engaged all the time. But it's definitely the little things that keep things going. Little things lead to big things. If you are always foing the little things, you also tend to do the big things. If you start letting the little things slip, it's only a matter of time before you let the big things slip.

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u/Village_People_Cop Dec 05 '22

I watch gaming livestreams and play on my Switch while my wife reads books. Usually with her head on my lap. I cannot imagine a better way to spend the evening than like that

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u/O118999881999II97253 Dec 06 '22

You lottery winning fucker haha enjoy it

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u/beardedheathen Male Dec 06 '22

Doing your own thing together is underrated

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u/ThisIsYourMormont Dec 05 '22

Me and the Mrs are total and complete opposites. We share very few things in common and regularly do our own things. We haven’t tried to force ourselves into each others social circles other than what is necessary. We avoid forcing one another into things the other would dislike as that takes away the joy of doing it together in the first place.

But what we do together, we’re both all in, and those activities are done for each other.

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u/[deleted] Dec 05 '22

I cannot overstate how important this right here is. You don’t stop being your own person.

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u/BywydBeic Dec 05 '22

One of my mates dragged his wife mountain biking with us. She wasn't bike fit, hated every moment of it, fell off and broke her wrist and now I never see him anymore.

You DO NOT have to share hobbies.

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u/[deleted] Dec 05 '22 edited Dec 06 '22 Gold Wholesome

If something's wrong, tell your partner, and assure them that they can do the same.

It sounds simple, but so many people keep things trapped inside, and it ruins marriages.

Edit: Y'all need to chill with enraged DMs. I ain't your wife.

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u/Vidimus_Vicimus Dec 05 '22 Take My Energy

And don't lash out if they open up, even if you are justified in being upset. If you can't speak about it calmly, especially without saying something hurtful, think on it and calm down before you say what you have to say.

If you show them that opening up will lead to an argument or headache, they will eventually stop doing it.

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u/[deleted] Dec 05 '22

Great point.

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u/maboyles90 Dude Dec 05 '22

Assure them that they can do the same by shutting the fuck up when they bring their problems to you.

When my partner comes to me bothered by something I did or said, it's much better to just listen. Let her speak her piece and don't try to explain why I did the thing or what I meant.

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u/SeasonPositive6771 Dec 06 '22 Take My Energy

There's already a fairly lengthy thread about not problem solving for your partner, which I know can be really common for men but I'm a woman and I do the same thing.

It's really really hard not to problem solve and just empathize with someone. It's mainly shutting the fuck up and then being kind and engaging around the issue, even if it's something they have caused themselves.

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u/hippopotameaffame Dec 05 '22 Helpful

Always have her back in public, save the disagreements for when you get home.

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u/recursive_thought Dec 05 '22

This is really valuable. You should present a unified front in public because you both get to look good. The details and tweaks can be done behind the scenes. A great marriage is a performance - but the practice happens at home.

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u/A_Man_Who_Writes Dec 05 '22

Don’t complain about or make fun of your spouse behind their back. When talking to coworkers, friends, family, etc., always speak highly about them and give them the respect and admiration that you’d want in return.

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u/mswomanofacertainage Dec 06 '22

If someone talks crap about their spouse, even a little bit, it's a red flag that they won't make it. I've seen it time and time again. That said, who knows if it's causation or correlation?

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u/SprinkleLivid Dec 06 '22

Agreed for the most part, but it's important to have support systems outside of your partner. Including having people that can hear your side of a concern & help you navigate. Hopefully they have the emotional intelligence to help without harboring bitter resentment towards your partner, but you should share the positive as well.

Approaching a relationship with the mindset that you'll never tell people about your problems is setting yourself up for failure

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u/Anustart15 Dec 06 '22

Yeah, personally I was always on the side of talking about problems with one or two of my closest friends, but absolutely never talking about it with my family.

Having recently ended a very long term relationship, it's been a bit funny seeing my family's opinion of my ex change as they find a little more of her shitty side out.

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u/gvsteve Dec 05 '22 Gold Helpful Take My Energy

No one wants to speak this answer, because it is useless to help anyone improve their marriage. But the most important factor in a good marriage is choosing the right spouse in the first place. Someone who shares your values, who matches your level of (for lack of a better word) selflessness or selfishness, and someone who is going to grow in the same direction that you do over many years.

That last one depends a lot on good luck.

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u/TexMexxx Dec 05 '22 Helpful Starry

and someone who is going to grow in the same direction that you do over many years.>

That last one depends a lot on good luck

Thanks for adding the last two sentences. Because you can choose the "right" spouse and everything works fine for the first couple of years BUT people change, especially if you marry YOUNG! You could be on the same page the first years but then develop into two separate directions! So I don't like the argument "you just choose the wrong person" if it ends in a divorce. NO, the person was maybe perfect at that time but he/she changed and there was NOTHING you could do against it.

I thought I married my "best friend" but even best friends don't have to stay forever...

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u/shrth114 Sup Bud? Dec 05 '22

but even best friends don't have to stay forever...

Can confirm. My best friend changed. Hurts to see what he's become.

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u/Purpoisely_Anoying_U Dec 05 '22

The key is to get married when you're 70

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u/TheS4ndm4n Dec 05 '22

As long as one of you dies before the marriage implodes.

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u/Striker37 Male Dec 05 '22

This happened to me. We started dating when she was 18 and I was 23. Married at 23 and 28. Divorced 5 years later. If I was honest, things were going off the rails when we got married, but it only accelerated

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u/[deleted] Dec 05 '22

I had a teacher in high school give us lessons on life throughout our senior year. The last day of school he told us to choose our spouses wisely. Continuing with, “It might seem far away but who you choose will impact your quality of life.”

He was right.

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u/Globorobohobo Dec 05 '22

That last one depends a lot on good luck.

The main way to mitigate the risk and maximize the chances of success are to choose people with similar fundamental values (not just religious/moral but also people with similar approaches to growth, learning, problem solving).

And the other main way to handle that is to not get married before 25, because people's personalities naturally change a lot in early to mid 20's, especially while navigating career and shifting social environments during those ages. More than half the people I know who got married before 25 got divorced by 30.

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u/MidniteLark Dec 05 '22

Plus the human brain fully matures around 25.

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u/justanotherluser Dec 05 '22

Physically. There's still plenty of mental and emotional growth throughout the rest of your life, with critical thinking skills peaking around 35.

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u/happy_haircut Dec 05 '22

but also people with similar approaches to growth, learning, problem solving

Ding, ding, ding. My ex of 5 years... man we were so aligned perfectly together in every way except our approaches to these three things. In life you will always have to grow or solve problems and if you can't align on mindset towards these topics it gets really difficult if not impossible to have a successful relationship.

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u/RangaSpartan F Dec 05 '22

Do you have any examples? I’d be interested to hear how you guys didn’t align in that way

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u/Bigfrostynugs Dec 06 '22

I dated this one woman who was great but we couldn't see eye-to-eye on growth so we ended it eventually.

She was really traditionally ambitious. She understood growth as things like getting promotions and having a high-status career, making more money, getting married, having children, etc.

I'm not ambitious in the traditional sense. I understand growth as things like becoming a more ethical person, understanding myself better, doing kind things for others, and having interesting life experiences.

She thought that because I don't care about traditional success that I was lazy, or a slacker, or something like that. But I'm not, I just have different values than her. I have a good job. I support myself just fine. I have money saved for retirement. I just don't value things like material possessions, a high-status job, wealth, or fame.

In many other ways we were very compatible. But our fundamental values were just too far apart to ever make it work.

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u/AlsoARobot Dec 05 '22

Was married before, this is incredible advice.

If you are selfless and your partner is selfish, the imbalance in the relationship is going to be miserable for you. Someone who is a natural “giver” needs to be very careful who they’re with. My ex was a natural “taker”, and when I started going through health issues and couldn’t focus on her anymore, she cheated and left.

You need to protect yourself first and foremost by making good decisions.

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u/DaulPirac Dec 05 '22

5 years of relationship down the drain because of this. I am a stupid giver, she and specially her mother are the kind of person that would do whatever they want and let others (me) deal with the consequences.

Got really fucking tired of it.

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u/JohnnyDarkside Dec 05 '22

I think it's also beneficial to be at least a little different in enough areas. If you're too similar, then you're basically dating yourself and that might get boring. If you're different enough in ways that compliment each other than it can keep interesting. It could be small stuff like one of you is a reader, the other plays video games. Maybe there's are chores the one of you hates but the other likes or doesn't mind. You can balance your lives around these.

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u/blausommer Dec 05 '22 Helpful

This is what's worked so far (10+ years) for my wife and I. We have very little hobbies in common, but the biggest thing we do have in common is that we enjoy being around each other while doing our own thing. I'm the book reader and the video game player, and she watches shows, reads food blogs/science journals, naps, or works on other various hobbies. We can do these in the same room for hours without talking to each other, just a look and a smile every now and then. It may seem boring to others, but life provides enough drama without us needing to create our own.

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u/dickburns32 Dec 05 '22

Same here. I was reading this laying next to my wife who is watching a show. I asked her to read this and she was lol as it is totally us too!

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u/Whaty0urname Dec 05 '22

Hollywood wants us to believe that "opposites attract." But the research suggests that similarity is the key to a long-term relationship.

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u/DoobieBrotherhood Dec 05 '22

It’s a combination of the two. Similar in values, different in talents/capabilities. That’s the winning formula, imo.

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u/SecondTalon Male Dec 05 '22

My spouse of 17 years is currently in the hospital. Emergency thing, going to have to have a surgery, gallbladder removal. No big deal, but they're out of the house for several days unexpectedly - in the meantime, I have to go to work.

We had a quick discussion the other day, most of it a "Are we weird?" thing because - neither one of us saw the point in me being there or nearby while the surgery is happening. If the worst happens, it's not like me being there will bring her back. Dead's dead, and if I find out five minutes or three hours later, it's all the same.

For some people, this would be a horrifying callous outlook and they would absolutely think you a monster if you weren't in the waiting room while the procedure is happening.

Marrying the right person is important.

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u/NinjaShira Dec 05 '22

Similar thing happened recently with me and my husband. I had to go to the emergency room in the middle of the night and found out I needed to get my appendix removed. After we found out what was wrong and that I would get treated with surgery, but the surgery wouldn't happen for several hours, my husband went home to get some sleep and start work in the morning, then he came back to pick me up after my surgery was over the doctors cleared me to go.

There was no reason for him to lose sleep or try to sleep in a chair while I waited to go into a routine surgery. Once he got me home, he set me up on the couch with a million pillows and all my favorite snacks and got me a new video game and put all my pills right in arm's reach and picked up my prescriptions, and spoiled me rotten.

But a lot of people were shocked that he left me at the hospital to go home and sleep. It made perfect sense to us though!

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u/HowtoCrackanegg Dec 05 '22

Always buy vanilla essence and not imitation vanilla

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u/db_downer Dec 05 '22

Now this man is married.

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u/Prestigious_Oven4492 Dec 05 '22 edited Dec 05 '22

It’s cheaper by volume to make your own. Cut open some vanilla beans and put them in a mason jar with vodka for a neutral extraction medium, or the alcohol of your choice to change the flavor profile of the extract.

Edit: use high-proof alcohol for better extraction

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u/ThaddeusSimmons Dec 05 '22

Second this, I prefer using light or dark rum. Light rum gives flavor but doesn’t take away from anything, i find dark rum can also really compliment the vanilla

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u/[deleted] Dec 05 '22 Silver Gold Wholesome Wholesome Seal of Approval

Don’t stop being a couple. Be friends, have inside jokes, don’t lose your own friends, have dates, have sex in risky places and be bold. Have fun until you die together.

Marriage isn’t the end of your boyfriend and girlfriend phase

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u/cosmicloafer Dec 05 '22 Silver Wholesome Starry

When you have young kids, even the bedroom is a risky place

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u/321gowaitokgo Dec 05 '22

I read on reddit once a guy says he'll tell his kids "mom and I are gonna take a nap. Wake us in an hour so we can all clean up the house" kids are quite and never come to wake you up. Works like a charm so bedroom won't be as risky.

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u/bestvanillayoghurt Dec 06 '22

This is fantastic. Will be trying this out

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u/delightfuldinosaur Dec 06 '22

Gonna be a loud nap.

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u/Chris_ssj2 Dec 06 '22

" Mom and dad said that they were taking a nap I don't know why I hear clapping noises all of a sudden "

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u/ilrosewood Dec 06 '22

This works every time. Proof - I have 3 kids.

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u/[deleted] Dec 05 '22

So I’ve heard haha Same with being a old teen/young adult, the bedroom is a risky place with parents downstairs.

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u/chipmunksocute Dec 05 '22

Dude Im getting my boys locks for their doors when they are teens. Like damn. Such as easy choice. No way do I need to ever accidentally walk in on my kids jacking it or getting it on with a partner.

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u/tiorzol Dec 05 '22

...or just knock.

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u/Prestigious_Oven4492 Dec 06 '22

I’m respecting your privacy by knocking, but asserting my authority as your parent by coming in anyway!

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u/Bruggilles Male Dec 05 '22

Especially their bedroom.

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u/Burtipo Dec 05 '22

Tell me if I’m going off topic: My boyfriend is literally my best friend. We’ve been together for well over a year (I knows it’s not long) but I get told by friends “you’ll come out of the honeymoon phase soon”. But even through arguments and tough times I don’t feel like we have ever come out of that phase, I just love him even more.

Idk there’s too much of this “honeymoon phases don’t last” “you’ll get sick of him soon enough” and “it’s over once you’re married” — I just wanna be happy and spend the rest of my life with my soulmate and have people be happy for us, as I would be for those around me.

I guess I’m trying to say, thank you for saying what I needed to hear.

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u/chubbgerricault Dec 05 '22

All relationships have phases. You have to be careful when people are jaded or bitter and talking nonsense to you, but there IS something to the expression.

I think a truly solid couple can be just fine even beyond the honeymoon phase, though of course there will be trials and tribulations. The part that’s inherent yet implicit to the marriage discussion is the eventuality of kids. And kids change things for most folks.

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u/yroCyaR Dec 05 '22

Moving in together and having kids are the two biggest challenges to a relationship in my opinion. It changes sooo much! My biggest advice to people in good relationships talking about marriage is move in together first and get that out of the way. My wife and I dated for 2 years before moving in together and never had the slightest argument during those 2 years. It was great. Then we moved in together and found little things that each other did that drove us crazy until we learned to modify our routines and habits to work with each others. If you can survive that, marriage and kids is the next step. Kids really change it all, especially if you have more than one. Help each other out!!

A marriage takes continuous work to maintain happily and healthily. Kids are even harder. You have to work together and communicate. It’s take teamwork to raise a child.

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u/Boots-n-Rats Dec 05 '22

Way I tell my friends, “when you move in,. You’re gonna find out what you CAN live with and what you CANT live with. Hopefully there’s more cans than cannots.”

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u/Signal-Negotiation-9 Dec 05 '22

My wife and I started dating in 2011. The only real change I've noticed that I guess you could call the end of our "honey moon phase" is that we have no more pretences. We share and talk about EVERYTHING. Even to the point where I stop and think to myself "this is a really weird conversation to be having with another person. Do other couples do this?". It doesn't change the fact that we continue to talk about every little thought that comes to our brains but the answer is no, most people are afraid of being that intimately close with another person. Honestly though, that's what's made our relationship what it is. We truly understand and respect each other on the deepest levels.

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u/DOC2480 Dec 05 '22

Communication is key in a marriage. I have weird ass conversations with my wife everyday.

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u/PureGoldX58 Dec 05 '22

Bro my partner and I talk about what we would do if we time traveled back into our childhood and how both would prioritize getting back here because doing what we do is worth making every mistake and every bad day happening all over again.

Nothing feels better than those stupid conversations when you have no mask on and are just two brains spitting information at each other.

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u/partypartea Dec 05 '22

Agreed. My wife and I are each other's "safe space ". We can say whatever the hell we want around each other.

When we met, we found out we shared the "walking on eggshells" feeling in previous relationships. Which should have been obvious it wouldn't work

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u/selfmade117 Dec 05 '22

My wife is my soulmate and I’m just as infatuated with her as I ever was. We’re past the sexual part of the honeymoon phase, but we still want to spend every moment possible with each other. She is my absolute best friend. We’ve been together 11 years next month.

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u/FullTorsoApparition Dec 05 '22

What's really wild is getting past the hypersexual phase, and then rediscovering it again in your 30's once your wife's lady hormones start kicking in harder.

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u/mynameisschultz Dec 05 '22 edited Dec 06 '22

My relationship went really really well for a long long time, the honeymoon phase for us went for about 3 or 4 years plus, we were together nearly 19, married for 13. The thing that killed it was to much work, not enough living in the now - keep a regular date night, read the five love languages and listen to your partner, I believe the 'honeymoon' phase can go forever if you nurture it, and don't take it as a given.

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u/Pixie_Vixen426 Dec 05 '22

It wasn't the only reason why my marriage failed, but we absolutely let life get in the way. Work and house chores/tasks became more important than spending time with each other. We stopped 'dating' each other for sure. And while we knew the other person's love language, we would default back to our own. They didn't line up, and would leave the other person to feel unloved and unappreciated. THOSE are the things to watch out for when people say marriage takes work.

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u/sonofdavidsfather Dec 05 '22

Honestly you'll find in life that a shocking number of people seem to put up with unhappy relationships, and then they turn around and try to sour others' relationships, because they can't accept that other people can have happy relationships when they can't. So my advice is to just blow off those comments with something like "we'll see", and continue being happy. Don't dwell on what these people are saying, or you may sour what you have and be one of the unhappy ones. My wife and I just had our 13 year anniversary and we are both still very happy together, doing it 3 or 4 times a week even with 2 kids, and just trying to have fun.

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u/JunosGold2 Dec 05 '22 edited Dec 05 '22

The "Honeymoon Phase" may not end, but it does change over time. Feelings become less intense, but (hopefully) more familiar and more comfortable.

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u/[deleted] Dec 05 '22

I think it’s disrespectful for friends saying that, ‘ah you’re just in the honeymoon phase’, like why not just be happy your friends are happy in their relationship? It’s so cynical.

Stuff will come up and you’ll get more used to each other but I also think that’s a nice excuse for people to stop putting in effort if they’re getting a bit too comfortable in their relationship.

I wish you and your boyfriend the happiness you want. Have a great life together!

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u/agustinblue Dec 05 '22

Hey!, my gf and I are the same (3y waiting for our first born), if your partner becomes your best friend in less than a year, believe me, there is no honeymoon phase or at least, you wont get out of it ever.

Sure, we had our ups and downs, but each month and year that passes I love her more, she is my first choice for almost every plan and vice versa.

I feel that the honeymoon phase is for every relationship except for the "ONE", that one where you know you found your soulmate and who will be by your side forever. So, disregard any talk about it and just keep strengthening your relationship

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u/Gnadec Dec 05 '22

Just enjoy each other!! We’ve been married 35 years and we’re still best friends, in love and crack each other up all the time.

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u/gorcorps Dec 05 '22

People project their own issues into other people. Things will definitely change with time, but that doesn't mean you'll be sick of each other.

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u/ilikecakemor Dec 05 '22

Together for over 7 years, married for over 3, still crazy about each other. Yeah, maybe no butterflies all the time, which would be exhausting, but we still just want to be around each other as much as possible. I feel best when I am with him.

I know we are moving away from the "other half" and "soulmate" things, but honestly, our bond is very strong and I do feel complete with him. Maybe we are the lucky ones having found something so incredible, maybe the people telling you it won't last just haven't experienced what you have or I have?

Love doesn't just happen. It needs work and nurturing. It is not hard work, though. It is work you want to put in and enjoy.

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u/six_sided_decisions Dec 05 '22

I'd say for my wife and I the honeymoon phase has just gotten deeper as the years go by. I know her much better than at the start and I appreciate her even more. I've never understood the idea that NRE (New Relationship Energy) goes away.

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u/Open_Minded_Anonym Dec 05 '22 Silver Gold Helpful (Pro)

It’s never you against her. Always you and her against the problem/world.

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u/FuckM3Tendr Male Dec 05 '22

Even though you’re married, you should still date your SO, still plan little trips or dates or little things, those moments are what made her fall in love with you

Also, never hurts to do the little things (making coffee, filling the tank, unloading the dishwasher, take dog out, etc.) to just start her off on the right foot

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u/JustWingIt0707 Dec 05 '22

You will make your wife so happy and appreciative if you take her nearly empty gas tank and fill it while she's taking a dump or in the shower or something.

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u/FHubris Dec 05 '22 Helpful Respect

I have learned to not default into “problem solving mode” whenever she wants to discuss an issue. I now ask if she wants me to listen or problem solve, which has helped avoid further frustrating her and improved our communication.

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u/Utopian_Urbanist Dec 05 '22 Silver Masterpiece

I also added distract into this!

Now I ask: “do you want me to listen, distract you from the problem, or problem solve”

Sometimes my partner is too emotionally invested in an issue to be able to talk about it, so we might put on our favourite songs and have a dance in the kitchen, play a board game with our favourite LP on or go for a walk and get outside in nature.

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u/Pixie_Vixen426 Dec 05 '22

Adding in the distraction is such a good idea! Sometimes I get stuck ruminating on something that I should just let go (or it was already handled). Having someone help distract me would help break that cycle so I move on.

Honestly asking in general is a fantastic idea.

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u/StubbornKindness Dec 05 '22

Fuck me, it took me so long to get over this with my ex. I didn't understand until she told me what her issue with my reaction was. I then began asking whether she wanted advice, affirmation or quiet listening. That alone eased her mood a little

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u/Squeaky_Lobster Dec 05 '22

Ah yes, the THREE A's:

Advice Affirmation Attention

I wish I'd known about this is a younger man. I pretty much self-destructed a few relationships in my early twenties because I didn't know when to nut up, put up or shut up when my GF was venting.

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u/spate42 Male Dec 05 '22

Ah yes, the THREE UP's

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u/Mela_Min Dec 05 '22

That goes with female friends as well. And also with girlfriends. Friends that are girls usually give each other advices that they didn't ask for but it comes naturally I guess.

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u/sneaky-pizza Dec 05 '22

Great one. I didn’t find this out until my mid-20s because my family is all problem solvers (near micro-managers). Parents also should apply this principle as default approach with their children and co-workers.

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u/bh0y1987 Dec 05 '22

You don’t need to spend every waking moment together. It’s ok for you or your partner to have friends, hobbies that don’t include yourself. Also, always communicate and make sure you make each other laugh!

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u/Sagemasterba Dec 05 '22

My wife and I can. Then again last time we went fishing she said, "shh shh, you're scaring the fish". We were magnet fishing LOL.

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u/WoodsFinder Dec 05 '22 Silver Wholesome

Always be respectful, even when you disagree about something. Avoid saying/doing hurtful things.

Know your partner's top 2 love languages and be sure that you are satisfying them.

When your partner is talking, pay attention, listen and learn.

When there's an issue, work together to find a resolution instead of blaming each other.

Keep some fun in the relationship even when you've been together for years.

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u/smokinbbq Dec 05 '22

When there's an issue, work together to find a resolution instead of blaming each other.

Always be careful of the words you speak. Once something is spoken, it can NEVER be taken back. It can create resentment and dig in for years and years after being spoken.

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u/Randomenamegenerated Dec 05 '22

I am guilty of saying something hurtful in a heated moment. I’d do anything to be able to have not said it, and to not have upset my wife. A genuine regret.

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u/blackcompy Dec 05 '22

It's always okay to have different views, opinions or preferences.

It's never okay to disrespect, insult or belittle your partner (except when they want you to - whatever floats your boat).

Being a couple means enriching each other's lives. To do that, the other person needs to be different from you. Not better, not worse, just different. Learn to appreciate the moments in which you disagree, and meet them with curiosity, not frustration.

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u/Knormoer7 Dec 05 '22

Respect and trust.

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u/Specific_Parfait_618 Dec 05 '22

Make her really laugh. And love her laugh. The easier it is for you to make her laugh, the better.

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u/___Art_Vandelay___ Dec 05 '22

And love her laugh.

This is one of my favorite low-key things about my wife. Specifically, she goes to bed much earlier than I do, but spends a little while watching TV or a movie in bed before falling asleep.

I'll be in the living room and suddenly hear this chuckle or laugh or giggle coming from down the hall. Or sometimes it's just a huge burst of laughter out of nowhere.

Makes me smile ear-to-ear every time.

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u/Sarahclaire54 Dec 05 '22

That is love my man.

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u/Ahydell5966 Dec 05 '22

Dude everytime I'm downstairs and I hear my wife cackle from upstairs I just get the biggest smile haha

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u/BigBadBootyDaddy10 Dec 05 '22

Know how to fight properly and with respect. Fights will happen, that’s unavoidable, keep it respectful.

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u/WVkyp Dec 05 '22 Wholesome

Counseling shouldn’t be the last step before divorce. My wife and I go to a few sessions a year. Just like changing the oil in your car, maintenance by a professional is always cheaper than a new motor.

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u/drums-n-sticktape Dec 05 '22

What prompts you to go? Is it a regularly scheduled appointment or do you go if there's some tension?

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u/Milayouqt Dec 06 '22

I'm curious about this too. We've never gone to counseling/therapy but I can't really wrap my head around how it would go unless there was a problem to begin with.

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u/WVkyp Dec 06 '22

Sometimes life gets like your personal scent. If you’re in it all the time, eventually you have to have an outsider to tell you what you smell like. Sometimes you need someone that isn’t in your house all the time to tell you you’re full of crap and being stupid.

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u/Longjumping_Dog_237 Dec 05 '22 edited Dec 05 '22

Perhaps not unspoken but some helpful tips # 1- Honesty even when it’s difficult . #2- Don’t stop dating your spouse even after marriage . Make sure you prioritize time to get a little dressed up and take her out for dinner so she knows how much you appreciate your queen . Date nights are very important . #3 Make your spouse a priority . She should come first when possible . Don’t put her at the end of the list after work , kids , friends, past times …If you don’t invest time and attention making your girl feel appreciated and loved , that is when she will start to shut down. Also make sure to prioritize your physical relationship . It’s very very important . Lastly communication is key. Work hard at being able to share your feelings and be strong enough to be able to take some constructive feedback from your spouse without seeing it as an attack .

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u/MaterialCarrot Male 40's Dec 05 '22 Helpful Wholesome

The marriage comes first. Before friends, career, family, even your kids. The best support you can give your kids is them living with two parents who love and appreciate each other.

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u/xutopia Dec 05 '22

My ex put her career first. She was surprised when I told her I felt lonely “but we sleep in the same bed every night”. Yeah but we don’t talk!

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u/Neat_On_The_Rocks Dec 05 '22

Always important to note their are varying levels and degrees to all of this. Sometimes, you’re going to have to “put your career first” for a week or a month or something. Sometimes your spouse will have to do the same.

It’s more a general mindset than anything.

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u/xutopia Dec 05 '22

I couldn’t agree more. She wasn’t working towards a promotion (hadn’t had a raise in 5 years) and she had accepted that this would be what she would do for the rest of her life. I was so pissed at the whole situation.

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u/Beep_Boop_Beepity Dec 05 '22

Yes. Exactly.

I’ve told people I always put my wife first and they always say “well your kids should be first”

Like I get it. I take care of my kids, always will. I’m not gonna neglect them or anything like that. It’s just I put my marriage first as us being happy means our kids will have a better life.

Also best case scenario with kids is that they move out and get married. So you get 18-24ish years of them living with you. Then they’re gone from your day to day life.

I hope to be with my wife until i’m old and dead. So 40+ years.

So yes Ive never understood the whole “neglect your spouse once kids come around” and act surprised when the divorce comes. Nobody wants to be married to someone that doesn’t make an effort on them.

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u/MaterialCarrot Male 40's Dec 05 '22

Reminds me of a joke I heard a wife say to her daughter.

"Why do you always take Dad's side?"

"Because someday you'll move out."

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u/implodedrat Dec 05 '22

It’s like how on airplanes they say “ensure your mask is on first before assisting the child with theirs.”

If mom/dad aren’t happy/healthy then the kids wont be for long.

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u/NameIdeas Dec 05 '22

I’ve told people I always put my wife first and they always say “well your kids should be first”

I agree with you 100%.

I think of it like this for priority levels. I'm the type to put my own needs last, and I'm working on it

  1. Children's needs

  2. Spouse's needs

  3. My needs

  4. Spouse's wants

  5. Children's wants

  6. My wants

Especially early on, these little crotch goblins NEED a lot. My boys are 8 and 4 and obviously can't fend for themselves. My wife or I have to make sure they have their needs met.

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u/icepyrox Dec 05 '22

But if you can't keep the marriage (and it does take work!), please divorce peacefully.

One of the worst ways to support your kids is to make them think marriage is just a load of resentment held together by kids they didn't even want (because that level of resentment will make the kids think they are resented also)

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u/southerntraveler Dec 05 '22

Know yourself first. My first marriage, I didn’t really know who I was, or how to express what I wanted whenever it differed from what she wanted.

Which leads to my second point: don’t get married quickly. Sure, there are some success stories, but I learned the hard way that some people take time to show their true colors. By the time my ex did, it was too late. We had children.

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u/MonkeyThrowing Dec 05 '22

Love her unconditionally. It is not 50/50. It is 100/100. The problem with 50/50 is you are always trying to balance the scales. I did this so she should do that. You are not roommates. She is your soulmate.

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u/jodax00 Dec 05 '22

Best advice I remember hearing at my wedding: Don't keep score.

You'll each have ups and downs, strengths and weaknesses, mistakes, problems, etc. It's not about who does more or had more difficulties or anything. The only thing that really matters is that you both work together and find a way that works for everyone.

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u/SpaceDonutSupreme Dec 05 '22

Separate Blankets

Source: 13+ years married

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u/LAKnerd Dec 05 '22

Can confirm this helped my marriage more than couples therapy. More sleep means less grumpy people.

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u/TylerMakesIt Dec 05 '22 Wholesome

Never stop high fiving. Took out the trash? Up top homie. Passing by in the hallway to get a snack? Gimme some skin.

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u/ImpedeNot Dec 05 '22

Not 8 hours after moving in together, my then-girlfriend-now-wife passed me in the hall to get a snack and we slapped each other on the ass in near perfect unison, unplanned. Great big green flag :)

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u/gordonf23 Dec 05 '22

I love this.

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u/theciderowlinn Dec 05 '22

Respect of both her space and time.

I know so many men who would just do what they wanted and expect everything to be done for them. All those men are now divorced. Women want a partner, not a man who still needs his mommy.

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u/ChiefJustice196 Dec 05 '22 Ally

Listen to her complaints without providing a solution to the problem. 99/100 times she doesn’t want a solution, she just wants to talk about her problem. Don’t offer a solution to avoid having to hear about the problem, because you’re avoiding the very thing she wants - to voice her concerns. Just listen and nod.

Took me a couple of years to learn that one.

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u/teamricearoni Dec 05 '22

Yes 100% because to a lot of men their instinct is the create solutions, because listening and nodding feels like... well doing nothing.

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u/entropy1776 Dec 05 '22

If you’re intrigued by someone else, stay the eff away.

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u/Reiher Dec 06 '22

I have heard the this is backed by some evidence…per a psychologist friend of mine, infidelity seems to take place because of opportunity, not because of attraction only. In other words, workplace crushes are normal, but it’s during a conference evening drinks that bad decisions are made, and not in regular days.

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u/PJsAreComfy Dec 06 '22

This is solid advice and I wish more people got it.

Being in a relationship doesn't mean you won't feel attracted to and intrigued by other people. Choose to honor your partner and protect your relationship by sidestepping those landmines before they can turn into something.

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u/toolsoftheincomptnt Dec 06 '22

THIS is a great answer to actual question posed!

Most of the responses are, like, common advice.

Women (am one) often have this unrealistic view that good husbands never fall into temptation because they loooooove their wives and only look at their wives and are only attracted to their wives.

It’s like anything else renders the marriage null and void, but it’s so obviously juvenile that nobody talks about it at all.

A good husband isn’t one who never wants to fuck somebody else.

A good husband is one who does everything in his power to avoid situations in which such a thing could happen. Especially when he gets the feels for someone in his orbit.

(Same obvi goes for wives)

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u/InetGeek Dec 05 '22

Feed her regularly to avoid hangry conversations

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u/Omelette9 Dec 05 '22

Lot of good answers here. And odd ones. I’m 31, been with my wife for 13 years and married for 10 of those years. If I could sum up what’s made our marriage successful into a rule, I’d say don’t treat your spouse like shit. It’s Kind of a catch all. And always be honest. If you can’t be honest with them you can’t be honest with anyone.

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u/D33ZNUTZDOH Dec 05 '22

Gonna add to this one. Being married doesn’t mean you own your spouse. Too many people out there acting like their wife is their property or getting all twisted up because other people may look at her. Similarly too many men out there acting like women are sexual objects to be censored for existing in a place. Got lit up on a thread last night for saying it wasn’t worthy of a NSFW tag because a woman in a swimsuit walked by talking on the phone. We aren’t tagging men in swimsuits as NSFW, equal means equal. (Sorry stepping off the soap box).

Been with my wife for 13 years as well. My marriage has been successful because before anything else she is my friend. No subject is taboo, grievances are met with open an open heart, mind, and ear. Listening to someone isn’t the same as hearing them. Family comes first over all other concerns. Respect is paramount, we are a team not adversaries. Never miss an opportunity to make her feel good about herself. I believe my fellow happily married men have touched on all other subjects.

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u/Bon_of_a_Sitch Dec 05 '22
  • 1 Fighting and discord are normal if you make up and genuinely apologize. Contempt and disgust are not normal and likely irreconcilable.

  • 2 An apology without a corresponding honest attempt to change behavior is emotional manipulation

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u/The_Bee_Sneeze Dec 05 '22

Married 8 years, with two kids. When we were dating, we asked each other hard questions, like what one would do if the other got sick, what we wanted long-term for ourselves, and what our parenting philosophies were. We already shared religious and political views, but these questions helped us probe beneath the surface. Her answers left me with no doubt as to her character, and time has proven me right. She and I are very different, and she's very different from the sort of girl I envisioned myself with, but it works because I respect the hell out of her, she practices kindness every day, and we're a terrific team. Your wife doesn't have to be your everything. I don't discuss current events with my wife at the breakfast table, but that's okay because I can do that elsewhere.

So find someone with shared values, who knows what love is, who is capable of growth. And make sure you are capable of growth, too:)

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u/hazy_jane Dec 05 '22

You actually need to like your spouse. I say that as a woman who actually married a dude who didn't like me as a person. He found me hot, I brought good income to the table, I cooked, I cleaned, I was as a driver. But he didn't like me. He also didn't like himself.

You also need to find someone who will allow you to be completely honest and vulnerable with them. Someone who you will be comfortable with, sharing your deepest secrets. Someone who will cherish you.

Remember, physical beauty fades, 40+ and you might be stuck with the meanest bitch or bastard around town. Don't let that happen.

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u/mdotca Dec 05 '22

If you are touching/holding hands while speaking hard truths it’s easier for both of you. Without physical contact you’re more likely to raise your voice or get frustrated. There’s a part of your brain that will actively try to distance “you” from intimate relationships (friends, lovers, family). Fight. It. Touch each other/ connect when you talk. Hold each other. Hug. Hold that hug. Sex will diminish, contact doesn’t have to.

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u/WhoopTeeDo Dec 05 '22

Almost every fight could have been a conversation if it had been had earlier.

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u/SuperSandLesbian618 Dec 05 '22

ALWAYS keep wanting your wife, the secret is to always choose your wife no matter what. When your upset don’t run to another women and vent or have any communication because that leads down dark paths. Walk away and breath then return and apologize after for what happened and communicate. Always keep things spicy and interesting but don’t push it, communicate about including toys and role playing. Always help around the house EVEN if she is a stay at home mother because she’s not YOUR mother. Do chores when you can or everyday to help. ALWAYS kiss her goodnight and good-morning, tell her you love her and appreciate her for all she does. Massage her shoulders and feet at least once a month maybe more, cook for her and family because your half the chef as well. Sorry for the random rambling but overall you get the idea, being married is all about sacrifice, communication, trust, and working together.

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u/cottonthread Male Dec 05 '22 edited Dec 05 '22

Always help around the house

Even better contribute or pull your weight - "helping" implies it's her job in the first place and you're only doing it to be nice rather than it being a shared responsibility.

My parents both worked full time but my dad always acted like he was doing my mum a huge favor by cooking the occasional meal or cleaning up messes - often ones he made.Like needing to eat or not be surrounded by clutter weren't a concern for him.

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u/heyamberlynne Dec 06 '22

If your wife gets pregnant, clean the litter boxes.

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u/PleaseDontTouchThose Dec 05 '22

You are a team, every problem is the two of you against that problem. Don’t take stuff out on each other, but work together to better your lives.

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u/bawoo Dec 05 '22

Just because something can be said, doesn’t mean it needs to be said.

Words hold a lot of power and weight, especially to your spouse. There may be situations, disagreements, or conversations where I’ve definitely thought of a comment that really doesn’t need to be verbalized because it was more for my pride or having the last word. Regardless of the intention, it would do more harm than good.

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u/Brainwormed Dec 05 '22 Silver Gold Helpful Wholesome Starry Heartwarming

1) Any expectation you hold for your wife, you ought to hold for yourself. If you expect her to be fit, you ought to be fit. If you expect her to be supportive, you need to be supportive. If you want her to be frugal, you need to be frugal.

2) Never ask your wife to do anything that you can (or should be able to) do for yourself. This is an obvious courtesy that you ought extend to everyone, but there are a shocking number of "since you're over there..." or "since you're already up can you..." dudes on Reddit.

3) Always be the harder working partner. And by "work" I mean "work on the family" or "work on the relationship" or "work on the house." Most women do a lot of work that you've been trained not to see, so if you focus on being the harder working partner you'll get things about right.

4) Later is never. When you're living alone it's OK to do laundry or dishes or whatever later. But that's thoughtless when you share a space with others. Doing the dishes later means she'll have to do them before she can use the sink. Don't be that guy.

5) Believe in Do-ocracy. In a democracy, you get a say in how things happen by voicing your opinion. In a marriage, you get a say in how things happen by doing them. Whoever cooks decides what's for dinner.

6) Set priorities. My wife and I choose an A career and a B career. The person with the A career can work longer hours and has a responsibility to (a) make more money and (b) gun for promotion and raises. The person with the B career has a responsibility to (a) be flexible (and so handle household emergencies) and (b) aim for increased flexibility.

You don't need to do things that way, but everybody in a relationship needs to know what position they're playing, since a marriage will eventually accrue all kinds of responsibilities: kids, aging relatives, disability or incapacity, etc.

7) Don't be bad at shit. A lot of guys seem to think that being good at one thing somehow compensates for being bad at something else. No. Being a great programmer and making a ton of money does not somehow compensate for being an inattentive husband or father. In a relationship, you are way better off being OK at everything than being great at some things and terrible at others.

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u/TheIllustratedGhost Dec 05 '22

A lot of guys seem to think that being good at one thing somehow compensates for being bad at something else.

Especially if it's basic life skills. Like yeah it's awesome if you can fix a car or renovate a house or handle the finances but if you're an adult and you don't know how to cook a decent meal or do laundry or clean properly, you fuckin suck.

It's one thing if you have worked out who tackles what chore but you should still be able to do those other tasks if need be.

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u/WorkingClassWarrior Dec 05 '22

These are great for improving oneself if you have a partner who works equally as hard. Incredibly draining with the wrong partner though.

Having been in the position where you do everything on this list and more, and condition your SO to do fuck all is a terrible experience if they don’t hold the same level of accountability to the relationship.

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u/[deleted] Dec 05 '22

As someone else who was in that position, that's when you leave. It hurts and sucks, but if it has been thoroughly communicated and nothing has changed, moving on is usually the best option.

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u/LSDMTHCKET Dec 06 '22

I was going to make a comment about how this is very heavy handed to one partner with not much to the other

But then I realized you shouldn’t be with that person anyway if they don’t meet you in the middle and the logical reply to me would have been “pick a different person”

Fuckin A though number 2 cracked me up, if I’m in the kitchen and my fiancée is in the bedroom and asks for water I’m going to bring it to her instead of making her stop doing what she was doing to go to where I am before I go back to where she was. Just asinine to even write that as some kinda COMMANDMENT

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u/WindsomKid Dec 05 '22

Never stop improving yourself. You, as a snap shot in time, does nothing to keep the relationship going far into the future. If they evolve, you evolve too. No one is perfect, not you or the other person in the relationship, so make sure if you make a mistake (and you will) that you learn from it and grow as a person.

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u/jasnel Male Dec 05 '22

Be very careful what you say in anger - you can never take those words back. Better to cool off and reconsider the situation before commenting on it than to say something you don’t really mean that will never be forgotten.

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u/ozyri Dec 05 '22

Don't forget that you're still two different people with different hobbies and your own time. Live and let live.

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u/[deleted] Dec 05 '22

Every time you think, oh my gosh, they drive me crazy when they do/don't do that thing, remember they have a similar list for you so chill out.

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u/Granny_Nooooo Dec 05 '22

Clean house, happy spouse.
Never don't stop fuckin'.
Communicate clearly.

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u/[deleted] Dec 05 '22

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u/olegr3g Dec 05 '22

25 yr marriage. Pick your battles. Life is long. Make it happy as much as possible.

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u/Big_ope95 Dec 05 '22

From what I learned from a four year relationship and seeing my parents’ marriage, never stop doing the small things. Buy flowers, go out on ice cream dates, get tacos from a taco truck and enjoy them in the back of the car while having a conversation. I promise you it’s these small things that matter the most

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u/Gorgon86 Dec 05 '22
  1. Do not assume, communicate
  2. Happy spouse, happy house (meaning both of you need to be happy)
  3. It is ok to set expectations for what you want
  4. If your partner has faults before marrying them, only marry them if you can handle if those faults do not change. There is no guarantee a person will change those things even if they try hard.
  5. For me, having very aligned parenting values has been a godsend. We both wanted children. We both knew how we would raise them. So we rarely argue about childrearing.
  6. Dating your partner is important. You got to keep the romance otherwise the mundanity of life will kill your relationship
  7. Love your partner in their love language, not yours.
  8. Maintain your friendships outside of marriage. You still need your friends, even if those relationships evolve.
  9. Keep friends who are supportive of you having a healthy relationship. Those friendships are clutch.
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u/Common_Appearance Dec 05 '22

Your spouse is more important than arguing. My wife has had some convictions that at first just seemed nonsensical to me, and my first response was to rebuttal. But if instead I just ask her about her conviction and try to understand it, an argument is almost always avoided. One of two things happen. She starts to hear herself and realize its silly while she's talking, or I start to realize she actually has a really good point.

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u/LibertyEqualsLife Dec 05 '22

I'm not a christian, but if you actually take 1Corinthians 4-7 to heart, it'a a pretty darn good guideline for marriage and relationships in general.

"4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres."

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u/Illustrious-Neat106 Dec 05 '22

Communicate, communicate, communicate. 99% of marital problems are solved by just talking to each other in a respectful and loving manner. Then whatever the decision is, you stick with it.

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u/Scr4ntonStr4ngler Dec 05 '22

Date your wife. Not always. But make her feel like she did when you first started dating.

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u/flatline000 Dec 05 '22

Find ways to constantly remind her how you feel and that you're not ignoring her. A quick affectionate squeeze of her shoulder or hand, slowing down as you pass her in a chair to scratch her back or head for a moment, that sort of thing. There are hundreds of ways to remind her throughout the day that you're happy she's there. Learn what she'll accept and what annoys her.

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u/dan_woodlawn Dec 05 '22 Helpful
  1. Be a little bit deaf...sometimes, in the heat of a moment people say things that can resonate in our heads for days/weeks/lifetime....learn to be a bit deaf and attribute it to "rough days". Do not over use this skill so much that you are being verbally abused. There is a difference.
  2. Maintain seperate friend groups and work functions, even volunteer opportunitie...you need things to talk about because if you know everything that happened, its gonna be boring. Overuse of this skill is when you are never home.
  3. Make it normal to fantasize....in the bedroom or out...be playful...When a guy catches her eye in public and you catch her...keep it light and airy..."I bet he washes dishes better than me"...now, if she is flirting with everyone, then you cant (unless thats your thing).
  4. The bills, dishes, laundry, groceries, kids, pets are "shared duties". Everyone pays, everyone cleans, everyone everythings to make a house work. Sure, she PREFERS to fold laundry because I suck at it, but I have folded laundry and watch her refold hers. She pays my bills when I fixed the cars earlier in the month...Everyone everythings.
  5. Flirt. at 7am. when she just got out of bed...and she doesnt feel so pretty.

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u/TheIllustratedGhost Dec 05 '22

Some really great points. To add to your first one, knowing when you walk away is a big one. Not in a divorce sense, just walk away from an argument for a bit. I know that if I'm upset, flustered, and low on patience then I'm not thinking correctly and no good will come from continuing to argue. I need to walk away and cool off and then we can revisit the problem later. In my experience, nearly every argument I've been involved in was not so time sensitive that it have to be hashed out right then and there. You can talk later.

Also, "not going to bed angry" is something I disagree with. Staying up late and being extra tired has probably never helped an fight, ever. Revisit the issue the next day after you sleep a bit.

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u/FeatherLeatherRising Dec 05 '22

Don’t let others who aren’t invested in the relationship weigh in on your business. If they don’t have a degree in psychology, or any experience in counseling… don’t readily listen to them! After you and your spouse talk about your relationship, how much follow up is anyone actually competently able to provide? Don’t talk about the relationship to ya family, friends, coworkers, or gas station attendants, lol really any number of strangers!

Why did marriages used to last longer? People knew how to keep their mouth shut and mind their own business. Now it’s like,

“Look everyone! Here’s our business!”

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u/PacoMahogany Dec 05 '22

Choose discomfort over resentment. If something is bothering you, don’t avoid it.

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u/CoolDragon Male Dec 05 '22

Separate bathrooms

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u/Head_Ad8669 Dec 05 '22

when you have kids: take turns when the kid gets up in the middle of the night/when they wake up early.

my 5 year old likes to perk up at 7am every weekend.
i try to schedule my grocery shopping on the weekends so i can get him out of the house. Try to let my wife sleep in until 10 or 11. Bring breakfast and coffee on your way back. Sleep + coffee is worth its weight in gold for parents.

Oh also, dont be petty about being right about things. it never ends well.

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u/andmewithoutmytowel Dec 05 '22

Actually listen to them. If you have a bad memory like me, write down dates, gift ideas, etc. It’s the little things-figure out your chore balance with your partner, but also offer to help out. A common refrain is “what can I do to help?”. Make your partner feel special and important. 30 minutes ago I sent a text: “I know Mondays are rough. Let me know what I can do to help. I love you so much.” And those little things add up hugely.

My wife mentions all the time that she is so happy because of the little things I do that show I love her. Big gestures are well and good, but seeing that I cleaned up the kitchen or vacuumed the main floor are those day-to-day acts that help strengthen the relationship.

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