4.18.2017

Love and Marriage | Overcoming Hard Times


When talking to friends and family about the dynamics of our relationship, most would probably say that we are truly best friends. We laugh together, make fun of each other, have more inside jokes than anyone else, and we are generally happy like all the time. While the a fore mentioned is very true, we aren't perfect. We face hard times just like everyone else. Sometimes I talk too much and sometimes he's annoying. However, I'm not going to be talking about the small nit-picky stuff in this post, but more-so the big things that test your marriage's foundation.
In my opinion, it is the hard times that show us who we truly are. Everyone can be happy and supportive when things are all good, but what about when they go bad? Now, let me just start off by saying my husband and I have only been married two years so I won't even pretend that I know everything about marriage and relationships and the hard times we will face down the road because I'm sure you veterans in the game have me beat, however, we have been together almost 8 years and so I can speak from our experiences from dating, to living together, to getting engaged, to marriage.
I can think of a few hard times we have faced as a couple, from being long distance to my aunt passing away and him supporting me through that to family drama, but one of our hardest times thus far in our relationship would have to be the tail end of 2013 and beginning of 2014. I had just graduated from the University of Tennessee in Knoxville and accepted a job in Houston, TX and my husband (boyfriend back then) was living in NYC. We had been long distance for a long time so it had been decided he would move to Houston with me. This meant leaving a super successful job on Wall Street, and starting over as a financial advisor in a place where we really didn't know anyone. Basically, starting from square one once again.

Needless to say it was a struggle. This was the first time in our four years of being together that I saw my man struggling. Not just physically, but this job was weighing on him emotionally. If you're not familiar with the financial advisor world, let me just tell you, building your business is a process and they tell each person that when you start out and they even tell you to prepare your spouse and family because it is an entrepreneur job that will require many sacrifices in the beginning. Unless you are fortunate enough to have someone hand business to you, you literally start from the bottom and have to build a clientele based around cold calls and door knocking. He was stressed, he was overwhelmed, he was defeated, and he needed my support.

To make a long story short, he eventually overcame after a few long and hard months, and he is a pretty successful financial advisor now, but we both talk about how rough it was back then and how the support we showed each other really got us through. We argued a lot during this time for sure because he was stressed, I was worried, he was frustrated, and I was trying to figure out my role in it all. However, we stuck together, prayed together, I gave him words of encouragement and wisdom, we compromised, and we overcame that obstacle together. Now, I'm going to be completely honest and tell you that I really don't think that is our biggest obstacle we will ever face. We will probably have more because that's just the way life works. We will be tested in more ways than I can probably think up right now. However, I know that obstacles and hard times are a way for Marcus and I to grow closer together. Any time we face a disagreement or hard time, we feel closer together in the end. I am confident that we can handle any hardship or storm that comes our way simply because we won't give up and we are doing things today and now to prepare us for the things that lie ahead.

Things like....
  • Praying together and apart.
  • Praying for each other and our marriage.
  • Keeping our communication open and honest.
  • Not holding grudges and handling small arguments early and letting them go.
  • We spend time together weekly; just us. Never stop dating!

When your spouse (or your boyfriend/girlfriend/partner or your relationship as a whole) is facing any type of struggle or hardship, here are three important ways you can support and be there for each other.

1. Be considerate of your significant other's feelings.
If you know they are going through a hard time, the WORST thing you could do is kick them while they are down. Emotions are usually at an all time high when going through a hard time, so be extra careful with your words and be patient with one another. Also, this goes for ANY situation. Be careful what you say in the heat of an argument. Words CANNOT be taken back. You may forgive your significant other for the evil thing they said to you, but you'll never forget it and it can come back up again later.

2. Give ENCOURAGEMENT; not just advice.
Sometimes you don't need to be told what to do.. sometimes you just need to be told you can do it. I know for a fact that my husband doesn't need me to give him advice all the time, but he just wants to feel like I believe in him. There is nothing wrong with stroking your significant other's ego and when they are facing a hardship, stroking it a lot never hurt anyone (no pun intended).

3. Face the challenge together.
When two become one, your problems become his problems and vice versa. Asking the other "what can I do to help you through this?", and really meaning it will go a long way. If you're in a relationship and you don't feel the pain your significant other goes through as if it is you, then there is a serious problem there (IMO). When I hurt, Marcus hurts and vice versa. I never want to see him go through anything, so we face it together no matter what. Never put anything your spouse is going through on the back burner labeling it as "not my problem" because it is most definitely your problem too!

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Whatever you do, don't give up on each other. Hard times come and go, but your marriage should see them, and push through them all. I encourage you all to put these things into practice NOW so that when a real hard time arises, it'll be much easier to deal with. You don't always think your best in the midst of an argument or during a stressful situation, so form the positive habits now for a more smooth transition. I'm curious how you guys get through your hard times. What are some things you do that could help other people? Drop me a comment below and let me know! :)

Thank you so much for reading. xo

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