We’re celebrating our 20th Wedding Anniversary this month (April 20). Last week we celebrated by going to Glen Eyrie and spent two nights in the Castle. It was a fantastic time!
We wish other married couples were as in love as we are. Sadly, we witness friends struggle with love.
When a man is spilling his guts to me about how difficult things are at home, or a girlfriend is complaining to Wendy about how difficult of a husband she has, we often boil down the problem to this simple truth: The two have fallen out of love with one another. They may point to this or that reason, but–unless there are infidelity issues–most of these reasons are petty. They are mountains made of molehills, situations blown out of proportion.
We can do no other than shrug our shoulders and say, “You aren’t in love anymore.”
Here’s the good news for couples who are out of love: You can fall back in love. You can! It’s easier than you think.
I hate to sound like a cheezy positive thinker, but falling back in love requires a change in attitude. I kid you not! Here are three that, if you apply them, you’ll begin the journey back to the same kind of love you once had, maybe that crazy-can’t-keep-your-hands-off-each-other kind of love.
1. Don’t sweat the small stuff.
The motto of love resembles a popular saying out there: “Don’t sweat the small stuff.” We enjoy listening to Dr. Laura on the radio, and one of the most common questions she asks dissatisfied wives or husbands is, “Tell me the worst thing you can think of about your spouse.” They typically give some petty thing (e.g. he leaves his dish at the table, she spends too much on groceries, whatever). Dr. Laura will always come back with, “That’s it?” And then ceremoniously rip the caller up and down for making way too big of a deal about nothing.
Married couples who love each other don’t sweat the small stuff. Wildly crazy in-love couples like Wendy and me follow up the saying with “it’s all small stuff.”
2. See weaknesses as strengths.
Gals “rag” on guys, guys “moan” about gals. It’s pathetic to see sometimes. I challenge you on this: consider what you’re “ragging” or “moaning” about. It is typically something that is your spouse’s strength!
Years ago, I had a friend who was an avid hunter. He took me hunting my first year in Colorado and taught me much of what I now know about Colorado elk hunting. The guy loved hunting and loved teaching others (like me) how to do it. This was his strength, very likely one his wife was originally attracted to before marriage. Now married, though, she beat him down every time he’d come home from a trip. “If you cared about me as much as you cared about hunting …” she’d say. They eventually divorced. Sad.
Imagine, the very thing that is complained about is the very thing that can empower your spouse. Love empowers each other!
3. Hope for better, more loving marriage.
Couples can discover the joys of love in a marriage. It is almost a surprise to a husband and a wife how easy it is to love each other. Instead of bearing down on each other and exaggerating each other’s faults, they get into each other and explore each other’s feelings, thoughts and emotions. Their relationship continues to build. The sky is the limit for them. They’re on cloud nine, and things are only going to get better.
A lifetime together with a marriage full of this kind of love is too short.