Ask The Audience: Advise The Newlyweds

retrochick.JPGIvy says:

Our fabulous commenter Laura wanted to know:

What is C.O.R.N? I’m new to the website and have seen this a couple of times. Just wondering. I’m also a newly wed so if anyone has so tips I’d appreciate them! Thanks!!!

Well, Laura, I can easily answer the first part of the question, but the second part- well, I’ll give you mine and Heather’s advice and then let our other wonderful commenters chime in. Mr. Ivy and I have been married for nine years- some of them good! I know there are many Home Eccers that have been married even longer, so let’s hear it, Home Eccers.

So, C.O.R.N. is a simple acronym that means “Clean out refrigerator night.” In my mom’s house, it was called “fend for yourself” night, but I think Heather takes this even farther and cooks something new out of her leftovers. At my house, leftovers are just not something that happens very often, with 2 hungry boys- one five and one fourteen, who eat like it’s their last meal on earth at every meal.

Now, for newlywed advice. To steal a joke from my pastor, let me tell you the one and only way you will ever totally avoid having problems with your marriage. Go look up 1 Corinthians 7:40* to find out how to entirely avoid marriage problems. That said, here is the one thing Heather and I both think is key to a long, lasting marriage.

Love is nice. Being in love is fabulous. But what really makes for a lasting marriage is perseverance. Being able to look at your husband or wife, knowing all their faults, and loving them completely anyway is the best way to make your marriage last. No person is perfect. Once you’ve lived with a person for awhile, they let down their guard and you get to know the REAL them. The bad habits, the irritating things they do, all of it.

And it’s easy to let those things wear on your nerves so badly you want to throw them out of your house permanently. But loving them completely despite the fact that they are unable to put a toilet seat down, or they sing off key, or any other number of irritating things- that’s what will help you get through it all.

Alright, Home Eccers, your turn. What advice do you have for the newlyweds?

*I know some of you are too lazy to go look it up, and I hate a spoiled joke, so here it is: (NLT) But in my opinion it would be better for her to stay single, and I think I am giving you counsel from God’s Spirit when I say this.


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    […] Ask The Audience: Advise the Newlyweds – you must read the comments The recipe: Chicken and Wild Rice […]

  2. Judith on January 21, 2009 at 11:03 pm

    Mr. Mike and I have been married for 25 years. It’s been wonderful and awful, sometimes by turn and sometimes both at the same time. We’ve often joked: “Divorce, never; murder, maybe.” But that just reflects our bedrock commitment: this is for life. That level of commitment has freed us to not worry about our relationship’s chances of survival (it will) and has forced us to deal with whatever has come between us.
    We encourage each other be an individual: he loves flyfishing and I love to sew, and we support each other in taking time for those things. But we are also clearly a couple when it comes time to make important decisions, or spend money, or set limits for kids, or face the grief of losing a parent.
    And we pray for each other. We laugh together. We face things together. We put each other first — because that’s what love does.

  3. Diaper Cake Becca on January 21, 2009 at 2:34 pm

    Your house is your house. Do not invite unwanted intrusions in and do not share personal business outside.

    Realize you WILL fight and that will not mean the marriage is over. Realize that mistakes will be made, sometimes big ones, but that this is not the end of the world.

    The most important relationship will always be between the man and wife. Once the children come…this, too, will continue to be true. All other relationships are spawned from this central relationship. Do not neglect the spouse for the children…it causes resentment.

  4. laura on January 21, 2009 at 12:38 pm

    Thank you guys SO much! I love this website!

  5. Attila on January 20, 2009 at 7:36 am

    “This thing (our marriage) is bigger than both of us” is a phrase that I keep in mind. When I want to kill my husband, yes; it happens; I remember this phrase and it helps me put the annoyance into perspective. I know he loves me and I know I love him, and we both get on each others nerves at times, but our marriage is more important than who left a red sock in the whites wash, who left the fridge door open etc.
    We are coming up to our 13th anniversary and are even happier than when we got married. I’ve just read this out to him, and he says it’s true!

  6. Milehimama on January 20, 2009 at 12:38 am

    Marriage is not a 50/50 proposition. Each person MUST give 100%!

    Never give up at the same time.

    It’s not your money or his money- it’s ALL Y’ALL’s money now. Try to replace “his” and “mine” with “our”, as much as possible.

    Hide the karaoke machine and Everclear when the in-laws come over.

  7. Fawn on January 19, 2009 at 10:06 pm

    One of the things that has inspired me the most is seeing my husband’s Granny and Pop together. They tease each other like crazy and just fit perfectly. I’d look at the two of them together and think, “THAT’S how I want to be when I’m old.”

    Granny once told me that there were lots of times that she would have left if she’d had anyplace to go! That’s the fact of it — sometimes you just can’t stand each other. But you can get through it.

  8. Tara on January 19, 2009 at 8:58 pm

    Don’t quit flirting with him. I don’t have years of wedded experience like others here, but my DFH seems to enjoy it!

  9. Kellyg on January 19, 2009 at 4:32 pm

    Thanks for the advice…I’m a newlywed myself. I’ve been dating the guy since the 7th grade (almost exactly nine years now). I learn more each day on keeping the peace in our relationship and how difficult it is sometimes to do so. Thanks again!

  10. Thankful on January 19, 2009 at 3:36 pm

    Say thank you to each other often and for the smallest things. The first year is the hardest, because it’s the first in which every little comment can affect the relationship forever. I also agree with earlier commenters about have lots of sex. It’s easy to get lazy about this.
    Lastly, don’t dismiss date night. We just started doing date night with 2009 (we’ve been together for 8 years, married for almost 3). I always thought it was kind of a stupid idea, but it’s been a giant success. We cook dinner together, and no chores (besides cooking and clean up) are allowed. Period. Also no surfing the internet all night or otherwise not being truly present. It’s been so much fun and really relieves the monotony of rake the yard, fold the laundry, you cook and I’ll balance the checkbook, did you pick up any bread, call your brother back, etc. etc.

  11. emily on January 19, 2009 at 3:27 pm

    This is my lil sisters website: It’s ideas and tips for newlyweds! Enjoy!

  12. Angela on January 19, 2009 at 2:57 pm

    I don’t have any great advise… One thing that works for me is to keep some wedding photos handy or on the wall. It is a good way to get you back to thinking way you love this person and married them in the first place.

    I also found figuring out how to work house chores from the beginning is way better then each person assuming the other person should just know to to this.

  13. blossomteacher on January 19, 2009 at 2:54 pm

    I agree with the crazy amounts of sex while you can!

    My advice is to have priorities and live by them. It is easy to say that your marriage is a top priority, but doing it is a different ball of wax. When I am tempted to tell hubby to quit nuzzling me so I can finish the dishes, I stop and think…the dishes are not my top priority…he is. So the dishes can wait. Or the undies on the floor…I can yell at him and he’ll pick them up, but it just isn’t worth it. (Bribes have worked though 🙂 And I try to enforce this on him, too…he doesn’t get to say “honey, I love snuggling with you more than anything” and then roll over in bed, back to me, and fall asleep. Get your buns over here and snuggle, then!!

    My hubby made serious strides in this with his new job. Old job, he would work 12-18 hour days, and then work all weekend straight at home on side projects. I never saw him, even though he complained all the time about missing me. (And no, we didn’t need the money…he was just a workaholic). New job, he is still working crazy hours during the week. But the weekends are ours, and when he comes home, he turns off the cell and comes to bed instead of staying up all night!

  14. Mom of three on January 19, 2009 at 2:53 pm

    My advise has worked for me for 23 years. Pray every day that you and your love will continue to love each other. A cord made of three strands will not ravel. Make that third strand prayer and you will have a strong marriage.

    Things that you can pray for:

    Lord, let him have PMS just once so he will know what this is like.

    Lord, let him have a Mack truck driven…so he will know what childbirth is like.

    Lord, let him please not sing out loud in front of my new friends.

    Lord, thank you for sending him to me.

    God understands when we really mean it. Hubby has never had PMS or a Mack truck accident (while I had three kids), but he also doesn’t sing in front of my friends. 😉

    Keep your marriage the center of attention when the kiddos come along. It really gets stressful then. Remember it’s you and him against them.

    When I hear friends say the just fell out of love with their spouse, I always wonder why they didn’t just try and fall back in love with him. THat’s where prayer comes in.

  15. Ruth on January 19, 2009 at 3:51 pm

    Let your relationship be itself. Be yourselves in your relationship. Don’t force things just because you’ve read them. Some stuff, like a date night, is a good idea for basically everyone. But it doesn’t have to be dinner and a movie or include lovemaking when you get home.

    Don’t be ashamed of what makes you different from other couples, don’t compare yourselves. Embrace that you’re two people who’ve found each other, love each other, and have things in common.

    I’ve found that most relationship books don’t work for us, and that’s ok. The basics of a relationship are communication, perseverance, and accepting that the other person isn’t perfect but you like so many things about them anyway!

    Good luck!

  16. Erin on January 19, 2009 at 2:38 pm

    Jim is right that Hallmark and Hollywood are lies, but being each others best friends is forever. My best advice (we celebrate our 20th anniversary this year!) is to be deliberate…think about what you are saying and doing and make sure you are living the life you intend…don’t do things “just because”…think about your values and goals and make sure you are living towards them, not just going along with the flow. Assume positive intent…remember your spouse might annoy you, but that was NOT his intention…dig deeper and find out what BEFORE it gets out of control. Finally, remember the work you put into the difficult times (and there will be plenty!) is what cements you together and makes the good times sooo sweet!

  17. Kathie on January 19, 2009 at 2:24 pm

    I agree with Heather and Ivy about perseverance. I think another thing to remember is that the warm fuzzy feeling people call love isn’t really love. It is a lovely feeling but it isn’t always there. Real love is wanting the best for the other person and looking out for them before yourself (I realize I’m probably going to get it for saying this). Unlike the old movie “Love Story”, love does mean saying “I’m sorry, I was wrong, please forgive me.” It also means being forgiving and not bringing the forgiven thing back up either to another person or in your own mind. Marriage is hard but it is sooo worth it. My hubby and I just celebrated 20 years 🙂

  18. wouldbehousewife on January 19, 2009 at 2:46 pm

    Pick your battles! Some things really are just not worth arguing about. If you have fights over every little thing, then when something major comes up it is harder to get resolved. I’ve only been married half a year, but we lived together 5 years before getting married and this was something hard for me to learn. I used to argue just to argue.

    Also, keep the romance alive by having a real date once a week or every two weeks. Make a commitment to always do that regardless of crazy schedules. Even if it is just a DVD and take out pizza, turn off the phones and just be together.

    I agree with JimK, no matter how bad things seem, they always get better. Hang in there.


  19. JimK on January 19, 2009 at 2:18 pm

    My advice is that Hallmark and Hollywood are LIES. You cannot and will not have each day be a berfect blossom of romance just because you fell in love. Do not go into this relationship expecting that each day will be exactly like you think it should be based on movies and greeting card ideas of romance.

    You need to WORK at maintaining a relationship. Sometimes that means understanding when the other person needs to do something. Sometimes that means making them understand what you need. Sometimes it means you won’t like them very much for a few minutes. And sometimes it means that little hearts will indeed appear to be pouring out of their eyes when they look at you.

    Ups AND downs. Every marriage is full of them. Don’t expect all ups, and don’t despair over the downs. No matter how bad it seems at the moment, always remember: This too, shall pass.

    Also, have insane amounts of sex all the time. I mean, that’s probably obvious, but don’t let life rob you of that. Make time. Semi-lazy tired sex is still better than not being physically close with your spouse for weeks at a time.

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