The Secret to not Fighting in Marriage

Now that I’ve caught your attention with that bold title, allow me to clarify. My husband and I DO fight sometimes. But what we don’t fight about are little things. People told us that when we got married, it would be the hardest year of our relationship, presumably because when you move in with someone you learn more about them and notice small, annoying habits you never realized they had before. But now I can say (almost) two years in, that the years we’ve spent married have been the easiest and most conflict-free years of our relationship, even though we didn’t live together before getting married.

So what’s the secret you ask? My husband’s secret is that he’s easygoing so not much bothers him. And he’s also forgetful. So when something does bother him he gets over it real quick because he doesn’t remember that he was even upset earlier. But me? I have a mind like a steel trap. Or an elephant. I NEVER forget. And I used to be an expert grudge holder (maybe I still am a little bit, but I’m making progress)!

Now before I tell you how we don’t fight about the little things, let me tell you the “little things” that my husband does. He never puts the lid on anything. The toothpaste? No lid in sight. The lid on the lotion? It may look like it’s be screwed on, it if try to lift it up, you’ll have the lid in your hand and the jar on the bathroom counter. And when he takes off his clothes at night? They go on the floor. Usually RIGHT next to the dirty clothes hamper. Literally. Like, two feet away or less. And in the kitchen after he cooks? He leaves cold stuff out. Like if I don’t notice and put it away eggs, milk, or cheese could be left out on the counter for HOURS when he leaves for work. Plus that forgetfulness thing. Really annoying when he forgets to tell me he’s working later than normal, or has to work on Sunday with very little notice.

All pretty annoying stuff right? Maybe your spouse does similar things and it drives you CRAAAZY! But I don’t nag my husband about these things, I don’t yell or get angry. Because years ago I read a book by Elizabeth Elliot where she imparted some wisdom that has stuck with me. In her book (I linked it for you here) she tells her readers what should be obvious. When you get married, you marry a sinner. It sounds like a no brainer, but how often do we forget that truth in our day to day lives and interactions? I know with absolute certainty that my husband is going to let me down and make mistakes. So why would I expect him to be perfect? Why would I base my happiness on him and his actions? He will fail to fulfill me every time.

So many people go into relationships with a “love is blind” mentality. Which is likely why so many marriages end in divorce. We ignore our partners flaws, or think they’ll change with time. Then suddenly we look across the way and see greener grass. Someone who doesn’t have the same sins our partner does. So we leave. We leave the old bad habits, the old annoyances. And you know what? We simply trade them for new ones. That new love? They’re a sinner just like your last partner. They simply have new sins, and new issues.

When I married my husband I entered into the commitment with eyes wide open. I was fully aware of most of his issues, and I’m sure he married me fully aware of mine. And when I chose him. I chose all his glorious, amazing, swoon-worthy habits. But I also chose his sins. I chose his darkness. I chose him knowing that I’d rather deal with his sins for the rest of my life than anyone else’s. I knew he was forgetful when I married him, so how can I be mad at him for forgetting things? I knew he was a lidless heathen before we got married, but I chose him anyway.

We still argue. We fight sometimes, or disagree over larger issues. But the little stuff? We let it go. And I cannot tell you how much strife that frees us from in daily life. Allowing us to focus on more important, more edifying things.

If this helped you, I’d love to hear about it. Or feel free to drop your best marriage advice in the comments.

Thanks as always, and God bless

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