My husband, Brandon, and I have our fair share of bad habits. It drives me insane that he won’t make the bed and leaves the bathroom sink wet. It annoys him that I tend to oversleep and don’t put my dirty clothes in the hamper. Are our habits frustrating? Yes. Are they divorce-worthy? No. I would never divorce my husband because he doesn’t make the bed and I sure hope he wouldn’t divorce me because I sleep in on the weekends. Those just aren’t habits that are capable of killing a marriage (right?? I mean, no one divorces over not putting clothes in the hamper, do they?) and they are habits that we were both well aware of before we ever got married.
While I doubt that those habits could destroy a marriage there are five habits that could and I’m sharing them with you today.
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Putting Someone Else First
Who is #1 in your life? If you answered anything other than your spouse then you’re not putting your marriage first. It’s ok to be close to your parents, your siblings and your friends but you made a commitment to your spouse and you have an obligation to make them a priority. Don’t allow your parents to speak poorly about your spouse. Don’t side with your parents or siblings in a disagreement with your spouse. Don’t spend all of your free time with your friends. It’s important to set boundaries and focus on your marriage.
If you’ve ever read the 5 Love Languages then you’ll probably remember that touch is one of those languages. Touch is one of the primary ways that we express love to one another and sex is the most intimate way to show love. There are a lot of research studies out there that have shown that physical connection, orgasm and cuddling lead to increased emotional joy, lower levels of stress and anxiety as well as physical benefits like lower blood pressure. When you start avoiding sex with your spouse you stop speaking one of the languages of love and start to create questions such as, “Is he/she not attracted to me anymore?” and “Is he/she sleeping with someone else?” which breeds resentment and anger.
Keeping Secrets / Hiding Purchases
You and your spouse should have common goals and dreams. Often these goals and dreams have a big financial commitment; I’m talking about things like paying off debt, building up savings, buying a home, etc. Don’t keep financial secrets from your spouse. Don’t make new purchases and then hide them or sneak them into the house when the other isn’t home. If you spent $150 on a new in-season handbag confess it. If you need a new pair of black boots or if you want a new electronic gadget talk about it, come to a common agreement, and share.
An addiction can kill a marriage fast because it places something else above your marriage. The object of your addiction becomes more important that your spouse, than your family and your relationship. It’s important to note that addiction doesn’t necessarily mean alcohol or drugs; you can have an addiction to video games, the internet, social media, shopping, gambling, etc. If you’re going to have an addiction it should be to your spouse, not to something that is taking time away from your spouse.
Making Your Spouse the Enemy
We all have those bad days when the car broke down, you had a flat tire, you were yelled at by your boss, the kids got in trouble, etc but that is no excuse for taking out your frustration and anger by picking apart your spouse. Don’t pick a fight. Don’t make mountains out of molehills. Don’t make your spouse the enemy. Be communicative and share that you’ve had a bad day. Explain what has happened to upset you. Allow your spouse to be a source of comfort.
If you’re interested in building healthy habits to keep your marriage strong, I highly recommend looking into The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Marriage. My husband and I absolutely loved this series and it offers great insight into building a marriage that lasts.
Any other bad habits you can think of that could lead to the destruction of your marriage? Tweet me @ashleyfromhp and don’t forget to pin this to your marriage board!