Marriage really isn’t rocket science. If each partner focuses on treating their partner like they want to be treated, all will be well. It is the golden rule of marriage – do unto others as you would have them do unto you. This is tough enough in any relationship, but especially difficult in 24/7 type relationships. Having to share finances, children, in-laws, toothpaste, bathrooms, etc. can lead to challenges for those of us on the OCD side of the fence. Frankly, I don’t see how couples live out the golden rule with consist success unless there is a spiritual focus in the relationship. The Creator is all about loving others. God’s influence in our life can guide, motivate, and encourage us to love others in the same manner. It seems to me having a deep, close, relationship with God is absolutely critical to be empowered to loving others as yourself
Perhaps you were not as naïve as I was entering marriage. For various reasons my wife and I did not have a lot of conflicts when dating. We certainly had differences but they seemed to get resolved somehow without letting anger fly. Perhaps this is the euphoria stage of a relationship where you are on your best behavior or you might get dumped. I certainly didn’t want to risk that. Once I got married there were many more issues to solve. Unfortunately, I missed the lesson that taught having differences of opinions doesn’t mean your partner doesn’t love you. Early on in marriage when Janet and I disagreed, I assume she didn’t love or respect me. I wasn’t aware at the time but my desires were fast coming expectations or demands. I learned over the years the importance of living happily incompatible. The reason some of us don’t have as many differences in other relationships is because we don’t share as many things and have to come to some kind of agreement.
Marriages go bad when they stop living by the golden rule and the most common violation of this golden rule in marriage is letting angry fly when differences raises their ugly head. Do you want your spouse going off on you when a disagreement comes up? Expecting long-term relationships to be conflict-free is unrealistic. Differences are normal between any two people, especially in a relationship where each is dependent on one another. Great relationships have differences; they just are able to solve them. Some problems never get solved completely. But don’t get gridlocked into separate positions. Listen respectfully to your spouse’s perspective and find solutions that work for both sides. Have certain rules or boundaries that when things become heated, stop and try to discuss another time. Mutually submitting to each other wishes solves many problems.