Marriage, matrimony and wedlock. Many words to a relationship when two people decide to spend their entire life together. It is a union between two different people and families, and getting through the first year of marriage is not always easy. Many questions arise when we talk of marriage. Especially these days.
Arranged or love, marriage requires a lot of understanding and sacrifices. As humans, we all need love, care, concern and someone to understand us. Marriage is the beginning of a life-long commitment. It also provides an opportunity to grow in selflessness as you serve your family. Marriage is more than a physical union; it is also a spiritual and emotional union.
Once the wedding is over, most couples and families exhale a sigh of relief. You are all set for your honeymoon to understand and come closer to each other. However, this joyride can turn on its head quickly if you’re not prepared for the many challenges that the first year of marriage throws at you.
Related Reading: 50 Things To Discuss Before Marriage
Tips To Get Through The First Year of Marriage
The first year of marriage is always vital. It is the best time to develop love, affection, trust and understanding in your relationship. Though it may come with many challenges due to two different people having different lifestyle, culture and way of thinking.
This is also the only time where underpinning of a relationship can be made stronger. Here are some things all couples should do during the first year of marriage.
1. Build trust in the first year of marriage
Trust is the key to a healthy connection and trust issues can ruin your relationship. During the first year of marriage, it becomes the duty of both partners to build trust in their marriage. You need loads of trust for getting through the first year of marriage. Here are some tips for the first year of marriage that will help you strengthen this very important pillar of a relationship:
a) Keeping promises
All couples promise many things to each other during their marriage alliance and honeymoon period. But the greater challenge lies in living up to those promises. Broken promises convey that you don’t value the other and their feelings.
b) Express your feelings
Expressing feelings play an important role in trust-building with your partner. When you express your love, sadness and disappointments, it becomes easier to connect to each other’s inner self.
c) Keep a watch on your social media
Don’t hide your relationship on social media as it makes your partner suspicious. Social media is a double-edged sword. Make your partner a part of your virtual existence and steer clear of reconnecting with old flames through these platforms.
Related Reading: 20 Ways To Make Your Husband Fall In Love With You Again
2. Understanding is vital for a strong marriage
One your major goals in the first year of marriage should be developing understanding. If there is one item you must add to your first year of the marriage bucket list, it is developing an understanding and rapport with your spouse.
This may take some time and effort, given that you may both have different perspectives on life situations but this will go a long way in building a strong and healthy relationship. Here’s how you can inculcate understanding in your relationship:
a) Focus on understanding your partner
When your partner thinks that you do not understand them, it will be hard for them to understand you. So, invest the time and effort in seeing things from their point of view before you put forward your own.
After all, that’s what life is about anyway — making small compromises and adjustments for the greater good.
b) Take the initiative to resolve differences
Whenever there is a misunderstanding or a dispute over anything, take the initiative to clear any confusion. Doing this will not only clear the misunderstanding but also develop trust.
c) Convey your thoughts in words
When two people fight or get in an argument, understanding each other’s emotions can become a lot harder. Even more so when egos are at play and you’re both trying to prove you’re right.
In such cases do not blow the fight out of proportion. Initial arguments in new marriage can leave a big impact on the future. If you’re unable to get through to each other by talking, write a letter or a note explaining your point of view.
Doing so can give you time to think about what you’d like to say while giving your partner the time to process your side of the story with a calm mind and react better.
3. Getting through the first year of marriage is all about the balancing act
Why is the first year of marriage the hardest? You already had a life comprising your family, job, friends before your spouse came along.
Even though this new relationship takes precedence over the rest, it cannot flourish at the cost of other aspects of your life. That’s why getting through the first year of marriage is all about striking the right balance and which is something that needs a lot of maturity and patience. Try doing this:
a) Embrace each other’s families
Marriage is not only between two people. It comes with a lot of family and social expectations. Meeting these expectations makes it tough to find time for your partner. Embrace your new responsibilities toward this extended family but take time out for each other too.
Go on a walk together after dinner or plan a dinner date once a week. Understand your partner’s needs and responsibility towards their family. Make space in your own family culture for your spouse.
b) Don’t stay consumed with work
It may be tough to balance work and home life when you are newly married. Make a schedule for doing things for each other before you go to work and after returning home. Do not bring office stress home. Take a leave whenever it is needed in your new marriage.
We all have special friends who we would want to be in our lives forever. Make sure that both partners accept each other’s friends and give space to let these connections thrive. But at the same time ensure that these friendships are not toxic to your relationship.
c) Synchronize your sexual needs
Knowing what your partner needs is important during the first year of marriage. A lackluster sex life during the first year of marriage can make both partner’s lose interest in sexual intimacy.
Talk to each other about your sexual needs and expectations, and try to find a common ground. Be compassionate and kind in your approach. When you do initiate sex, be romantic and not desperate.
Related Reading: 12 Characteristics Of A Successful Marriage
4. Get on the same page about handling finances
One of the most crucial tips for the first year of marriage is to agree on how to handle finances. Many couples believe in sharing finances and sometimes a home maker can expect to be able to spend her husband’s earning because of all the housework she does. Here’s how you can do it:
a) Discuss your financial standing with honesty
Financial stress can be damaging to a relationship, especially at a nascent stage like the first year of marriage. So, an honest discussion about each other’s financial standing is warranted. Go over your accounts together and analyze your assets vis-à-vis the debt you carry.
It is also vital to be clear about how you expect money to be handled. If you feel your spouse is overspending, don’t start yelling and accusing.
Bring up the matter by pointing out how you’re jointly over budget this month and how you’d like to look at ways to get back on budget.
b) Set up a joint account
Have a joint account wherein you both can put a certain amount to keep it fair and work as a team. If you are sharing the bills – from the electricity to the grocery expenses – then a joint account helps immensely.
You can pay the EMIs and insurance premiums through your joint account.
c) Plan for the future
Discuss your future investments and financial planning. Get on the same page before one of your start investing for the future. Make sure you’re both in agreement about your investment choices.
Related Reading: 15 Tips For Financial Planning For Newly Married Couples
5. Respect is essential to get through the first year of marriage
The most difficult year of a marriage is the first year of marriage. Because more than love and passion, it is the mutual respect that sees a couple through their roughest patches. You can instill this important component in your relationship during the first year of marriage:
a) Respect your partner in front of others
Respect your partner in front of your friends and family even if you’re having the worst imaginable fight. Omit impatience from your relationship.
If you have respect for each other you can deal with anything under the sun. If there is disrespect from your partner then it’s a rough road ahead.
b) Praise goes a long way
Praise your partner for doing something right or being thoughtful. Appreciate their efforts of making things right. Appreciation is a great way of building a healthy relationship in the first year of marriage which will be a strong pillar for the future.
c) Respect personal space
First year of marriage problems start when a partner starts believing that should be joined at the hip. Learn to give each other a break from time to time and respect your spouse’s privacy.
Privacy and personal space in a relationship don’t mean that your partner is hiding something. They might just want to be left alone now and then, and you must respect that need.
Related Reading: 10 Things To Do When You Are Drifting Apart In Your Relationship
6. Show gratitude and appreciation
Small gestures of gratitude and appreciation can make a person feel valued and wanted in their relationship. That helps in building a stronger bond between spouses.
a) Say I love you
Tell your partner how much you love them or how attractive you find them at every opportunity you get, without reason. Also, tell them how much you look forward to spending the rest of your lives in love and care with them.
b) Say thank you often
For a delicious meal, a gift, taking care of you and your family, appreciate your spouse and thank them. This will make them feel loved and cherished in the marriage.
c) Tell the world
Don’t reserve these expressions of gratitude to the privacy of your home. Let others know, as often as possible, how grateful you are for your spouse.
Put your social media account to good use and let it be known that you are thankful for everything your spouse does for you and your family but avoid being the annoying newly-married couple on SM. Doing this will build trust and motivate your partner to do better and more for you.
Mistakes Couples Should Avoid In The First Year of Marriage
You are both learning the ropes of how to co-exist in matrimony that is why getting through the first year of marriage could be tough. It is only natural that you’ll slip up and make some mistakes. However, some mistakes should be avoided at all costs during the first year of marriage:
- Finding faults with your spouse. It is not their fault if their way of life does not match up to our expectations, and vice-versa. Sit and discuss these things patiently
- Not sharing feeling and assuming things
- Not taking care of each other’s emotional, spiritual and physical needs
- Lashing out during argument or displaying abusive tendencies
- Being selfish in your marriage
- Letting outsiders meddle in your marriage
- Discussing every detail of your married life parents and friends
- Unrealistic expectations from your partner
The first year of marriage is tough, no matter how you spin it. Couples get together because they believe in the idea of happiness. Couples stay together because they still believe they can achieve it. People in relationships pretty much want the same things: love, security, trust. If couples learn to work together toward achieving these things in their marriage, they can achieve their happily ever after.