Reading Time: 3 minutes Some things are unforgivable when you’re in it. Sometimes you have to get some time and space between yourself and the pain to get there. I lived in a marriage where my husband cheated. If it had been once, I might have gotten past that. However, it wasn’t one. For a very long time, I had neither courage to forgive or get out. I tried to forgive it. I tried everything. But it wasn’t until years after our divorce that I honestly did. While we were still together I hated him and myself. By the time it was over I had a lot of forgiving myself to do also.
Reading Time: 4 minutes Show me a couple where thank yous don’t flow liberally between them and I’ll show you a couple that has a lot of resentments lurking just under the surface.
Politeness and appreciation are the two things that make the day to day business of sharing a bathroom sink and a closet with someone doable.
Appreciation tends to flow very easily at the beginning of a relationship. However, as the newness starts to wear off, appreciation can drift to other things. The problem is, you get what you focus on. When you quit focusing on appreciation you find fewer and fewer things to appreciate.
Reading Time: 3 minutes If you are committed to staying married, and you are less happy than you want to be, that’s not normal and it’s not ok. The good news is it’s probably mendable because you can learn the skills it takes to be in a relationship. Sooner is better than later, because sometimes later is too late. Waiting too long might not mean divorce. There is a fate far, far worse than divorce. Waiting too long may mean spending the rest of your life in a soulless, loveless, lifeless marriage, and that is a recipe for slow, early death.
Reading Time: 2 minutes If you’re wondering how healthy your relationship is, ask yourself if you have the kind of life you want for your children when they’re grown? Would it be ok to get hit occasionally? Would a little bit of infidelity be alright for your little one? Is “not that bad” good enough for your children in their future marriage?
I doubt it. But if you’re living it, you are making it much more likely that’s exactly what will happen.
Children have x-ray vision. They see what’s going on behind closed doors. If you’re staying in a relationship for the kids, make it one worth modeling, or get out. Period.
Reading Time: 3 minutes There’s a bit of intrigue associating the honey in “honeymoon” and the ancient legend of the honeybee’s luscious nectar with love and sex. In her book, The Hive: The Story of the Honeybee and Us, Bee Wilson muses how human civilization would have barely survived without the honeybee: its wax was used to create light in a dark world and its honey gave nourishment and medicine.
Reading Time: 3 minutes When I got a bit older, I tested and patented a new system I like to call Fuckboy FiltrationTM. It’s where you ask for what you want when you want it. For example: If I didn’t feel secure, I would let the person I was dating know, and tell him what I needed to feel better. If I wanted a relationship to move forward I would outline my expectations: where I wanted things to go, when I wanted that, and what would happen if those expectations weren’t met. I even sometimes went out of my way to be terrifying, like “Hello, hi, are we dating, is it serious, it puts the lotion on its skin.”
The result? Singlehood. Glorious, powerful, elective singlehood. Also, some (lots of) crying.
The men that were spooked by these conversations faded away. Almost every time I did this I was ghosted within a month. And…I loved it. Obviously, it was frustrating at times, but I knew that I was successfully filtering out people who didn’t want what I wanted, or who just didn’t want to be with me.
Reading Time: 2 minutes Don’t put your happiness or your satisfaction on hold waiting for someone else to change. Don’t make your spouse responsible for your passion. Don’t let your love get stale, or altogether rotten while you’re too disconnected to do anything about it. Doing something, anything, do everything you can. Why? Because trust me, it’s easier than divorce. Breaking up is very, hard to do. Harder than you probably think it would be.
Reading Time: 3 minutes Whenever I have the chance to take a quiet moment with my partner and just appreciate him – the curve of his shoulder, the color of his eyes, the utter satisfaction of his belly laugh – I take it. I take it knowing that it could never come again, and my only choice is to drink it in right fucking now. In that little moment, there’s no pressure to make us last, no worries about money or jobs or apartments, no forever. There is just him and me and this. And then he does something annoying and it’s gone, and boy am I glad I stood in the glorious present when I had the chance.
Reading Time: 3 minutes Yes, I have an advantage. He never sees me without my makeup because we have to make plans days in advance to see each other. I don’t have to ask him to take the garbage out because we don’t share a household. I do all of that myself. We don’t fight about money, because we don’t share any. The time I share with him is uncomplicated and unfettered by the daily complications of life because we don’t really share one. Occasionally, we share a bed, but sharing a bed is not the same.
Reading Time: 5 minutes Carrie wasn’t going to cheat. But she didn’t like the way her marriage felt. What she wanted was a quick fix and while a marriage that’s starving needs more than a quick fix mentality when two people truly love each other sometimes some easy steps in the right direction can take you miles back to where you want to be.
Carrie was clear. They didn’t have a lot of money for romantic weekend trips or even date nights. The first thing she said to me was, “If one more person tells me we need a date night, I’ll scream.” While I thought they did need a regular date night, they also needed a way to be different in their relationship every single day.
So, we came up with a list of ten things she could do every day that would take less than a minute each. I was hopeful, but not super optimistic about massive changes. This turned out to be one instance where I’m thrilled to admit I was wrong.