9 Relationship "Rules" Happily Married Couples Break
Rules were meant to be broken! Find out why breaking some of these long-standing relationship guidelines can lead to a happier marriage!
Over the course of history, couples have established a series of rules and guidelines for maintaining a healthy marriage. While these rules and guidelines come from a good place and offer invaluable wisdom, sometimes it’s better to think outside of the box.
The age-old relationship advice that has been passed down and shared over the years may not be the key to successful marriages. In fact, according to an article published by Women’s Health Magazine, many couples find happiness in breaking these long-standing rules.
Check out the complete list of relationship rules and guidelines that happily married couples break:
Rule #1: Don’t go to bed angry
This is one of the most commonly enforced rules in a marriage. However, it’s not really the most prudent advice. Forcing yourselves to resolve an issue just so you can get some rest seems like a cop-out. The advice does offer some wisdom and can be applied to little fights. But, sometimes an altercation requires thought and time to be settled or defused.
Time heals all wounds. You can’t slap a bandage on a broken arm and call it healed, and you certainly can’t just say “whatever” and dismiss a big fight just to get some shuteye. That’s why happily married couples are flexible with this rule.
Rule #2: Don’t keep secrets
We’re not saying that you should hold back from telling your spouse the important things. We’re also not saying that you should lead a second life, or hide things from your partner. What we’re saying is that everyone has a secret or two that are better off not being discussed. It’s all a matter of context.
Take for example Kristin, of Winooski, Vermont, a happily married woman of 26 years. She says that there are certain things her husband doesn’t need to know, and vice versa. "Like when it comes to our daughters," Kristin says. "Sometimes the girls confide in me because I'm their mum and they'd be embarrassed if my husband knew their 'secret.' I'd rather them share with me and get some guidance or understanding than not trust me. I don't think this hurts my husband at all, nor would he want me to break their trust."
Rule #3: Talk it out
Sometimes, less is more. That goes for talking it out as much as anything. Lauren (from Sharon, Massachusetts) has been married for 15 years, and she claims that breaking this rule is sometimes necessary to sustain happiness in a marriage.
I think many couples talk things to death and revisit old hurts or betrayals, which is unfair,” Lauren says. "We both break this rule. If we talked everything through, there would be little time for much else. Sometimes I book vacations or date nights without asking, but we trust one another to make good and fair decisions.”
Rule #4: Never try to change your partner
While you shouldn’t try to change the deeply rooted values of your spouse, the fact of the matter is sometimes…change is a good thing. For the trivial, smaller habits and routines that need to be changed or improved, it’s okay to break this relationship rule.
Tori, a loving wife of four years from Los Angeles, told Women’s Health Magazine, “I think you can't break a person, but if you openly discuss your issues and work on them to become a better couple, that works. Instead of trying to change your partner, explain to him in a loving moment what your needs are. He will want to make you happy if he truly loves you!”
Rule #5: Maintain your personal interests
For ages now, the idea that having and maintaining personal time to pursue your respective interests was mandatory. If you believe that works for you, then please continue to do so. However, some couples just genuinely enjoy doing everything together. Not only that, but they enjoy sharing their personal interests with their spouse. Happily married couples sometimes break this rule because there’s nothing wrong with involving your partner with your pastimes or hobbies!
Rule #6: Divide household responsibilities evenly
Depending on your marriage and occupation, this rule can be particularly flexible. Let’s say you work at home, or you’re a stay-at-home parent. Should your partner really be expected to do just as much around the house?
Michelle, of Raleigh, North Carolina, who has been with her husband for 17 years, told Women’s Health Magazine, "I'm a stay-at-home mum, so I take on the majority of the household duties. I don't really believe in dividing them equally because honestly there is no such thing!"
Rule #7: Schedule date nights regularly
Sometimes forcing the issue of date night can be exhausting. As parents who work to raise kids and keep the family afloat, should you really be adding another exhausting task to your busy schedules? I think not. If you don’t have the energy or passion about going out on a date with your partner, then don’t force. Maybe you can schedule a night in instead. After all, date nights are supposed to feel fun and free. Not forced, and wearisome.
Rule #8: Make romance a priority
There’s nothing wrong with random occurrences of extra romance in a marriage. But, honestly, if you truly love one another, the romance is palpable at all times and doesn’t need to be considered a priority.
"Romance is not a priority at all," says Susan of Brooklyn, NY. "As my husband says, 'It's last on our list.' But I think it's OK because we know we love each other and do little things daily like saying, 'I love you' and kissing morning and night."
Rule #9: Keep the kids out of your bed
The reasons for practising this classic relationship advice is pretty obvious. Not to mention that kids will eventually develop the habit of sleeping in your bed as opposed to their own if they spend every night in your bed.
Marcus, a dad from South Burlington, Vermont, claims that he doesn’t see the harm in having his kids in he and his wife’s bed. "We enjoy having our toddlers in our family bed until they are ready to move into a room together."
"This just means we have to get creative when it comes to sex. Who said you have to do it in your bed, anyway?" he playfully added.
This article was originally published by Women's Health Magazine
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