After the honeymoon, married life settles into a familiar pattern of work and weekends, in-laws and holidays, pets, kids, and houses. It’s a rare pair that agrees on all these topics. Learn the things married couples argue about most often, so you can have an adult discussion about them rather than a fight.
Couples with divergent ideas about saving versus spending are bound to get argue about money sooner rather than later. The spender may adopt secrecy as a defense against criticism by the saver. The saver might also stash funds “for a rainy day” without telling the spender. This type of dishonesty doesn’t bode well for a successful marriage.
Sit down when things are calm and work together to map out a household budget. Be clear about how much money comes in each month and non-negotiable expenses like the mortgage, groceries, and taxes. Then determine how much you will save or invest and how much discretionary spending you can support.
Too much sex or too little? When one partner has a greater need for intimacy than the other, or you don’t understand each other’s needs for loving attention, discord can ensue. Talking about what you want or need sexually can be uncomfortable and potentially hurtful to your partner. A compassionate conversation free of accusations is the best strategy for progress.
One partner may feel unfairly burdened by housework, resulting in arguments between married couples. Sit down and take an inventory of who does what to see if things are genuinely unequal or if it is a matter of one partner feeling unappreciated. A sincere expression of appreciation from one partner to the other can result in a better sexual relationship for couples, so this could be a two-birds-one-stone problem.
Of course, if your honest inventory shows that the housework scales tip seriously against one partner, adjust to create a better division of labor. Determine what chores are essential and how often each partner will complete them. Agreeing on a baseline of household tidiness will help you feel better about things that one partner thinks are trivial and the other sees as necessary and lead to less to argue about.
Whether to have kids, how to educate them, what is age-appropriate and what is unsafe for them, and how or whether to involve them in religious life are all topics that engender disagreement between parents. Arguing in front of the kids is always a bad move, especially if you’re undergoing a custody dispute during a divorce.
Whether or not to have kids is a conversation you should have had before marriage. If one partner’s feelings have changed, or they weren’t forthcoming before marriage, you could have a serious marital issue that could potentially result in divorce. Try to be honest about how you feel now about raising kids. Your marriage and the children will be better for it.