Thursday, November 15, 2012

Dear Lil Bro and Sister-in-Law,

Congratulations! I'm so happy for you both! You must be thrilled to finally have your own place. I'm sorry I haven't visited yet; we're all busy, and our schedules are so different. I was thinking that since we haven't had time to see each other much, I'm probably overdue for some big sister advice.

When I think about you guys recently, I can't help but remember what it's like to be early in a marriage. There is so much to do and process. The details to be hammered out, the boundaries to be acknowledged, the shock you might feel at some of the more peculiar traits you discover in your mate, and the realization that someone you love could be so wrong so often.

Well, the thing is, EVERY COUPLE goes through this. The person you're staring at across the table at night will be wrong about a lot of things. Accept this and point it out. It's really best that you don't let your partner go blind to their own weak points.

On the other hand, there will be those moments when it is you who is clearly wrong or peculiar. Accept this and point it out. You will be amazed at how avoiding a defensive attitude will open up discussions you've never had.

The couples I knew who claimed to never fight early on were divorced long before I was. Maybe that doesn't sound very comforting, but I guess what I'm trying to say is don't be alarmed if you suddenly experience conflicts you weren't expecting. It's normal.

I don't need to tell two preschool teachers about positive reinforcement and timeouts, but remember: these work well for adults too. Recess and clean up time are pretty important too. However, I think the most important thing is to find the humor as much as possible. If you can make each other laugh, everything will be OK, and you'll create a homebase to nurture and inspire each other.

See you soon! Send me pictures of the new place when you can!

Love to you both.


1 comment:

  1. Thank you for the free advice :) K and I haven't killed each other yet, so that's a good thing. - M