Believe it or not, our social lives can be a source of conflict. One partner needs more social interaction, while the other prefers much less. One person thinks the party is on Friday, but the other person is certain they told you Saturday. Throw in limited free time, kids, and other various circumstances, and things can turn into a mess pretty quickly.
One of the keys to navigating this challenge is obvious, but oh so important: clear and honest communication. Here are five things to make sure you’re talking about.
We know it’s healthy to have separate friendships after you’re married. Spending time with your own friends, away from your partner, helps you maintain a balance of “I” versus “we” and nurture your own identity. That being said, there are some unique benefits to having “couple friends,” too. Here are four big ones:
Dates are harder to make happen than we’d like to admit. There’s the challenge of prioritizing it enough to get it on the calendar, and then actually figuring out all the details and logistics, like finding a sitter.
Another challenge is deciding what to actually do! If you’ve been with your partner for any length of time, you know that dates can easily feel redundant and routine. You make the time to connect, but what if that connection time just feels like a rinse-and-repeat from the week prior? How can you spice up those dates you work so hard incorporate in your marriage?
Do something different! That’s the easiest way to make dates feel like something special and exciting. But we get it – thinking of date ideas is like adding one more task to that list of things you have to do to make it happen. Good news! We’ve got 25 date ideas for you – conveniently categorized into five different types to try!
Like many of you, I’ve been working from home since mid-March. It’s been an interesting change! There are certainly perks, but there are struggles, too. In my situation, I work from my home by myself all day. My husband leaves for work around 6:00am and usually returns around 3:30pm unless there are errands to run. I get a majority of my workday to be productive in whatever environment I want to create. Need to do some heads-down work? Great, I make a cup of tea and sit down at my desk. Need to crank out some paperwork? Perfect, I find that new podcast episode and play it while I check tasks off my to-do list. Need to jump on a spontaneous video call with a few coworkers? Easy, just hop on the call, no need to silence the house or notify anyone so they don’t accidentally make a background cameo. I fully realize how easy I have it when it comes to working from home, but I also know many of you don’t have much wiggle room to accommodate your work-from-home needs.
Working from home with kids, whether they are distance learning or not, comes with a great deal of challenges – we hear people sharing their struggles with this firsthand and on social media. And while I can’t relate to those struggles, I try to empathize and give grace to those I know who are pushing through while in that exact situation.
But one scenario that I don’t see many people talking about, is working from home with your spouse. Specifically, those couples who were thrown into this reality and had to instantly learn how to co-work with their partner every day (not the couples who literally work for the same company together and sort of chose their own destiny).
What are the challenges and unexpected perks of co-working with someone you’re also married to?
When the world slowed down for a few months, many of us got a taste of what it was like to have more free time, albeit free time stuck at home. We learned how to bake new treats (banana bread? sourdough?), organized every drawer and cabinet, and maybe even took on some home improvement projects. But by now, we’re all itching to do the things we postponed or longed for during our days at home. On top of that anticipation, it’s also summer, which usually brings long weekends, vacations, and lots of get-togethers. What were previously “normal” decisions might now be met with a new sense of unease or anxiousness about being with and around others. Combine these factors with the urge to make up for the adventures we would’ve had this spring, and you have a situation that could lead to some heated discussions with your partner about where and how you’ll spend your precious free time.
Suffice it to say, this summer brings some new challenges for your relationship.