The Biggest Lesson I’ve Learned After 10 Years of Marriage

Biggest lesson learned after 10 years of marriage.

Last week we celebrated our 10 year wedding anniversary! We are quickly entering “old married couple” territory.

These 10 years just absolutely flew by! I can’t believe it. It honestly seems like yesterday we were celebrating just 5 years. In fact, it also seems like yesterday that we were dating in college! (in fact, head to the bottom of this post for a story of how my husband and I officially met!)

I remember when we were first married and I had friends’ older siblings celebrating 10 years, and I thought WOW that seems like so far away. But it really wasn’t that long.

In the last 10 years we’ve had a lot of fun adventures! New jobs, new states, new homes, new babies… so many things! Of course, there have been lessons learned along the way. Some lessons we’ve learned in the last year. For example, I learned that my husband LOVES starting a new project or hobby. He dives all in! He may eventually loose his gusto for that project, but he gets such joy and satisfaction when he finds something, outside of work, that makes him happy. And I need to cheer him on!

I also learned that I am an internal talker. I tend to have serious conversations, in my head, and either talk myself out of my annoyance, or frustration, or even joy; OR I prepare my arguments ahead of time and tell myself “just wait until he does that again!”. So not fair of me!

The BIGGEST lesson I think we’ve learned in the last 10 years?

We found our best way to have a “fight”.

I don’t mean an all out screaming match. Neither of us really have that in us.

But I’m talking about having tough talks. Deep discussions. Conversations where we really have to work through something.

Tough talks on finances.

Deep discussions on intimacy.

Conversations about disappointments.

We have had plenty of talks that lead to an eye roll (totally me) or a passive aggressive or snarky comment (totally me… again). It’s still a lesson we’re practicing, but we’re figuring out how we can best discuss hard topics.

My husband is a figure-it-out guy. He wants to offer immediate solutions. I am more of a stewer. I prefer to have my own internal monologue to work through what I’m thinking/feeling, and then, when all is calm, we discuss it.

We’ve had some of our hardest conversations since having children. I think it’s REALLY hard to become “mommy and daddy” and couples so often forget that they are still “husband and wife”.

We had 2 big tough talks right at about the same time, all around Christmas last year. For both, we did something completely different from what we’ve done before.

We chose to talk when we had zero emotion, zero skin in the game.

We talked during the kids’ nap time! It wasn’t bed time. It wasn’t after one of us was emotional about a topic. We kind of talked about them out of the blue! We weren’t upset. We weren’t resentful. It was just… a conversation.

Duh. I’m sure you’re thinking “duh”.

We were too after the fact! We, to this day, chuckle that we’ve waited this long to figure out that we have our best tough conversations randomly. We are more open and honest when we aren’t already charged up. We are better listeners when we aren’t feeling stressed.

BOOM!

It took us 10 years, but this one single lesson has been SUCH a game changer!

What about you? Any big marriage or life lessons you’ve learned in the last year? I’d love to hear them!

And now, for something light-hearted!

I LOVE to tell a story! And one of my favorites is the story of how my husband and I officially met, in college, freshmen year!

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2 comments

  1. Candice W. says:

    I love this this so much! My husband and I are at six years of marriage (8 years together) and STILL trying to figure out the best way to fight. Both of us are horribly stubborn so it usually takes some doing, but we’re getting better at it! Love this post so much!

  2. Catherine Short says:

    Happy Anniversary! Our 10th is next year and it’s hard to believe though not at the same time. I think one of the biggest realizations we have come to is life is hard but marriage doesn’t have to be…ones partner should be a refuge! If someone gives up of course that’s one thing, but partnering is a good thing!

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