Love must be learned, and learned again and again; there is no end to it. ~Katherine Anne Porter
I think this is so true.
I am always encouraging my third graders to not only become better students, but more importantly, better people. As for myself, I am always striving to become both a better teacher, wedding coordinator, but most importantly, person. My husband is my best friend and inspires me to better myself daily since he is so earnest and thoughtful.
I think it is easy for couples to forget about “after the wedding” while wedding planning, but I think that beginning to build a life together is very important to keep in the forefront of the engagement period.
My mom is a marriage counselor and when Brian and I were engaged, she sent us this book and two workbooks as premarital reading. We found Saving Your Marriage Before it Starts: Seven Questions to ask Before-and After- you Marry by Drs. Les and Leslie Parrott extremely helpful and found that the topics led us to conversations or extensions of conversations that we had not yet had during the four years we were dating! This was exactly what we were hoping for. With the not-so-optimistic divorce rate nowadays, we figured we could get as much help as we could get!
The exercises in the workbooks were the most effective for us.
One exercise asked us to heighten our awareness of our unspoken rules from our upbringing in order to prevent unnecessary conflicts. I didn’t even realize that I subconsciously had certain unspoken rules from my childhood until we did this exercise together. It opened my eyes to my own unspoken rules, as well as my now husband’s. Being aware of these helps couples recognize their impact when they arise, and hopefully continue down a positive, understanding path.
Another exercise asked us to identify what we perceived as our roles and our partner’s roles within our relationship. A different exercise was called “From Idealizing to Realizing Your Partner.” These were very powerful exercises for us.
Whether you are looking for literature for someone single and hoping to marry, engaged, newlywed, or married, this guide is extremely practical and eye-opening. It will inspire deeper conversation and maybe even surprise you with its revelations! I highly recommend it.
Invest in your marriage and keep evolving as a person!