Our #1 Secret to Keeping Our Marriage Strong


Marriage? It’s HARD…and anyone who tells you otherwise? They’re lying to you. It takes work every single day, but its so worth it. I know. I’m probably the last person in the world that should be giving marriage advice. I’ve been married multiple times, but you see? That’s the exact reason I can give you advice. I’ve been there, I’ve done it and I’ve made the mistakes….and I learned from them. The other day I was talking with one of my best friends from school and she commented that Tom and I seem to have a great marriage and asked how we do it. It isn’t easy, let me assure you of that, but my Tom is a great man. Sure, he has his issues, but who doesn’t. I know that I certainly do. Those issues, if we’d let them, could easily make life a living Hell for us both. Worse yet? It could easily destroy our marriage.

 

Happily Married? Yes? No? We are...and it's all due to one thing.

 

Fortunately for us, we love each other. For me, he’s my best friend, my protector, my confidant and more. For him, well I don’t know 100% for sure what I am to him, you’d have to ask him. I do know that we love each other with a fierceness and strength that is beyond anything I had with my ex-husbands. We have been through so much together in the time that we’ve been together and we’ve come out strong on the other end.

It may sound corny and I’m sure you have heard it before, but love? It really isn’t enough to keep a strong marriage. I loved my last husband fiercely, but it just wasn’t enough to keep the marriage going and after less than a year of marriage, we were in trouble.

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So when Tom and I made the decision to spend the rest of our life together, it suddenly became really important to me to figure out where my other relationships went wrong and over the last 2 years since we got married, we’ve figured it out.

Respect.

In my previous marriages, respect was something that was scarce…on both parts. I’d like to say that I was innocent in the whole situation, but unfortunately, I know that I wasn’t. With Tom, having respect for him and he having respect for me, is so important to both of us.

It isn’t easy. Dear Lord help me, it isn’t easy. That man loves to push my buttons and yes, I do my fair share of button pushing too. Somedays I think he wakes up with only the goal of making me mad…and yes, sometimes he feels the same.

At the end of the day though, we both show each other love and respect….and those two things my friends? Are an integral part of ANY strong marriage.

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Stacy Barr
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Stacy Barr

Stacy Barr is the face and brain behind the frugal living and lifestyle blog Six Dollar Family. A true gypsy soul, her newest blog, Unsettled Hearts, chronicles the journey of her family to become full-time travelers. By the age of 30, Stacy had overcome an alcohol addiction, a drug addiction, divorce, survived domestic violence and had built a life for herself and her daughter after spending 10 months in a homeless shelter. Her book, also called Six Dollar Family, has sold more than 7,000 copies since its release.

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