Thursday, September 1, 2016

Revitalizing my Marriage with One Small Change

When you are adopted at 10 after being in foster care for almost five years, your perspective on home life, family and marriage are suddenly heightened and have that much more importance to you.

My adoptive parents truly showed me a God centered marriage. I saw them have healthy “marriage therapy” (another name for strong discussions or fights) and make up afterwards. I saw them frequently hold hands in the car or out running errands. As if it was second nature. I saw how sweet my mom was to send my dad emails during his work day just to say I’m thinking of you.
Once I was married, at the fresh baby face age of barely 19, I thought I knew it all. I was prepared because I had watched my parents marriage and others close to me. Hmmm, how young and naive, right? Our first fight came on our honeymoon on day two. What’s funny is I can hardly remember what it was about? I know I had a problem with being sarcastic and disrespectful. He thought I wouldn’t love him anymore or show it physically. So instantly we had put up guards, boundaries and fights broke out continuously our first six months.

Close to our six month mark I went to the library and decided it was time to read some marriage books, I knew we needed to figure out a way to communicate better and truly have a happy marriage. I grabbed two books off the bookshelf in the Christian section and one of those truly changed my life and our marriage.

It was called Love and Respect. It was as if a lightbulb went off and I suddenly realized what was missing! So slowly I began to show respect, it wasn’t always easy since I had already made it habit from how I used to talk to him. Then I would leave the book out in the open, just so he could see. Since his job had him on the road a lot I mentioned to him the book and his first response was, “Good you need to read that, I don’t.” But later I found out he bought the audio version and also listened to it.

It was one small change. It made a difference. Communication grew, our love grew and soon the fights were few and far between. We have been married for 8 years now and he truly is my best friend. God knew what he was doing when he put him in my path as a teenager and I wouldn’t choose anyone else to journey through life with and raise two wild little men!

I wanted to share just a few tips on marriage:

Pick one habit for your marriage. Pick one thing you will do to better your marriage each day. Yes, each day. It’s been my lasting marriage goal for life now.

Read a marriage book. Since I read Love and Respect I regularly pick up a marriage book at the library or bookstore to read. Either monthly or each season.

Initiate Sex. Yep, what better way to surprise him than popping the kids into bed and telling him to meet you in the bedroom?

Ask “How can I pray for you?” Make it a weekly habit before you start your week. You’ll be surprised.

Kiss & Touch often. Even if you are all touched out for the day being at home wrangling the kiddos, he hasn’t seen you all day, he hasn’t touched you. Another good habit to form.

Kemp Family 2015-The Kemps-0042.jpg


Leave a comment. I love to hear from my readers it is like getting a letter in the mail.