"I need you to pick up the kids"
"Did you do the laundry"
"How come you don't come to my games"
"I made dinner, YOU clean up"
"Just go with your friends"
"Your turn to get the sitter"
"Why don't you ever put gas in the car"
"You don't have fun anymore"
well, I am sure some of these phrases on this very short list has been uttered by you or your spouse. I can attest that it has happened to me and many other couples I have talked to. Its totally normal and its ok. But, I do want to share one thing that seriously has changed my marriage.
We have been married for 6.5 years. In that time we have lived in 2 states, in 8 houses/apartments, had two kids, five jobs (together), we both went back to school, and mostly one car. We now have two little ones due this summer :) and we have traveled to the UK, Asia, and the southeast states. Through all of this, I know we have been blessed. We haven't faced any big trials or tests of faith. We have always has SOME money in savings and more often than not, had at least another couple we were good friends with.
And then came the time I like to refer as month of hell.
Let me preface and say that we both could not see eye to eye. And that I was, in all honesty, picking fights. I was really in a bad place. I was angry and through that lens I could only see the bad. Even the good was tainted. Example: Hubby doing the dishes after dinner. In my mind he was doing them because he didn't think I would do them. I wasn't doing my job. So, I got really mad. (Anyone else ever felt the same? That "self-inflicted-spouse-guilt")
It really went on like this for only a few weeks but it felt like the whole 6.5 years were a joke. (See what angry does? Or a mis-balance of hormones?)
So one VERY LONG night, we called a truce and decided to just treat each other as friends would. Somewhere along the lines, we started to treat each other as partners vs best friends. Looking back, it did start when we had kids because I think that is what naturally happens. You both have to share the load. But in the drive to be really good parents we lost that part of ourselves we fell in love with to begin with.
Example: McKay used to make me lunch almost every day. It was always cheese quesadillas (we were in school) After we got married, we still met for lunch most days. But then it stopped. I used to be adventurous. And I will be the first in line to say that I am NOT that person anymore. And we used to read every night together a Classic book. Somehow that ended.
Well, the past few months we have been trying to remember that we are friends. And as such, we need to treat each other as that. Think about this... would you ever tell your friend you don't care what they are talking about? No! You would give them your UNDIVIDED ATTENTION. If your friend wanted you to got to a game or play, would you at least consider it before declining? Of course!
So that is what we have been doing. In this process I have found that I crave his companionship and I really enjoy that he wants to hang out with me. We played on a volleyball team together and it was a lot of fun.
I hope that this month, the month of love, you can try really hard to be that friend to your spouse. Practice saying yes to everything for one day. Then make it two, then three etc. And don't let that "spouse-guilt" get you. If she decided to take out the trash or he id cleaning the kitchen, be grateful.