8 Things I Learned in 8 Years of Marriage

Eight years ago I said, “I do” to the woman who is now my wife. The memory still makes me smile. We’ve changed in so many wonderful ways while still being ourselves. She brings out the best in me, and I’d like to share some lessons learned.

1: Sometimes you’re both right. Sometimes no one is right. Most of the time being right is not important, which explains why we have two paper towel holders in two different places in the kitchen. One is under the sink. The other is magnetically attached to the refrigerator.

2: Never fighting is unhealthy. Fighting is healthy. Fighting fair is even healthier. That means focusing on the conflict at hand. No fair bringing up the fact that a year ago she accidentally threw out something that you didn’t want her to. Hopefully, she replaced it, if possible, and you can both move on.

3: When fighting, sometimes the answer is that you need some time alone, some time cuddling together or both. What you’re fighting about is not REALLY what you’re fighting about.

4: A happy home is more important than a clean house. We have a cleaning schedule that we stick to, mostly. We’re not allowed to judge each other’s work, and we trust each other to do what we’ve agreed to do to the best of our ability. If one of us does not like how the other completed a particular household task, they have the opportunity to take care of it themselves the following week.

5: No one can be your everything. That’s too much weight for any one person to bear, and it’s not fair to either of you. If she wants to go to a party when you’d rather stay home and bake cookies, so be it. You both get what you want. Besides, if you’re never apart, you’ll never have a reunion. Reunions are the best!

6: People do change, but you have to accept them as they are. Getting together with the expectation that a significant change will follow is a setup for failure. Expect problems if you can’t accept someone from day one.

7: Having someone you adore to sit on the sofa with and hold their hand while enjoying a sandwich and TV is more important than having someone who looks good on your arm at some swanky event.

8: Baggage is a sign of life lived. Marvel and enjoy. Help each other unpack.

Elizabeth Andre is a writer of lesbian romance fiction. Her latest, Someone Like Her, the ninth book in the Lesbian Light Reads series, was published by Tulabella Ruby Press on October 14. Link includes her affiliate code. Thank you for clicking.