I will never claim that my husband, Stephen, and I have the perfect marriage. I will never claim marriage is easy. Hell, I will never claim to be an expert in marriage or relationships, considering we been together for four years and are only going on two and a half years of marriage.
What I will say, is that we strive to have a healthy relationship, we need to work on it every day, and we need a refresher from time to time to keep us in check.
Something we use to keep us in check is this handy little chart called “healthy vs unhealthy relationships” found here: http://www.twu.edu/downloads/counseling/E-7_Healthy_vs_Unhealthy_Relationships.pdf
Please take a look at this chart before moving on to the rest of the blog…
I find this is very helpful tool to evaluate any relationship whether it is dating for a few weeks, or married for 50 years. It helps you stay grounded. Helps you keep on track.
When baby girl was about 6 months old, Stephen and I were under a lot of stress being new parents and newly married. I was always with baby girl whom had horrible re-flux and was in pain – poor thing cried a lot until she finally started on solid foods that got rid of the re-flux. We had to deal with a financial cut because I was on maternity leave, leaving Stephen to work 6 days a week, and we had to move in with my sister. Thank god my sister and brother-in-law were so generous. I was dealing with postpartum depression as well, and I didn’t even realize that how I was feeling was symptoms of that… we were exhausted and at the breaking point.
Things were said that were not meant, and it was almost the end of Robyn and Stephen. However, we decided that we would not give up, and we would attend couples counselling. My sister and brother-in-law watched baby girl, and we would go every Saturday morning to learn tools to keep our marriage together.
This chart sums up the conversations we had in counselling. Obviously, everyone reading the chart will have something different that speaks to them. At first we may start working on for example – both of us are allowed to have lives other than our own relationship/family… and then in a year as our relationship grows and develops, it could be one person is not feeling heard by the other. There will always be something to work on. We just need to keep the communication flowing, keep what it means to have a healthy relationship in check, and it will keep growing in the right direction.
My marriage and relationship are something that I hold sacred in my heart. And as Stephen and I grow together, celebrating the successes or hold each other close through the hard times, I know we will do what we need to do to keep our relationship strong and healthy.
*** this time, yes, that is Stephen and I on our wedding day