Unconventional tips for surviving 35+ years of marriage

I recently had the pleasure of meeting a couple celebrating their 35th wedding anniversary and I could see instantly that they were best friends. I could see it, for one thing, because they were celebrating their anniversary in Las Vegas. That tells me several things including 1) They don’t take life or themselves too seriously. They didn’t require some ballroom at the Hyatt to celebrate their anniversary. It’s okay that college kids were drinking out of plastic cups shaped like boobs around them. 2) They don’t struggle with jealousy. Las Vegas is a city of sin…and very small outfits…and can be a tough place for some insecure couples and 3) They love to party together. And I could tell that they genuinely loved being around one another. So I had to ask them if they had any advice for a successful marriage, and I got these quirky tips.

Don’t live near your in-laws

Do you want to avoid half a lifetime of fighting with your spouse because you let your parents give too much input on how you should decorate your house, invest your funds and raise your kids? Do you want to not struggle to find time for a date night, because you don’t fill up half of your weekends having dinner with your family? Then don’t live near your in-laws. Live a two-hour drive away. That way, you can see them when you want, but they won’t be in your business. When you see each other, they’ll be so grateful for the time with you (because it’s rare) that they won’t want to talk too much about mortgages and home décor.

Unless in-laws make great babysitters

If you happen to be blessed with those amazing parents who don’t stick their noses where they don’t belong, but are actually just really fun hang-out buddies then do live near them. Why? Because you have free, willing babysitters. That is something that you will find is invaluable. You’ll never have to pass on a vacation or a night out because the childcare is too expensive, or unreliable.

Separate bathrooms

Bathrooms can be a big point of tension in a relationship. If one person feels the other hoards the bathroom, making them constantly late for work, or if one thinks the other makes a mess of the bathroom, you will argue every day. You use the bathroom every day, after all. If you have separate bathrooms then you don’t need to fight for the restroom when you’re running late, and you can be as messy or tidy as you want.

Separate bathrooms Bathrooms can be a big point of tension in a relationship. If one person feels the other hoards the bathroom, making them constantly late for work, or if one thinks the other makes a mess of the bathroom, you will argue every day. You use the bathroom every day, after all. If you have separate bathrooms then you don’t need to fight for the restroom when you’re running late, and you can be as messy or tidy as you want.

Always vacation

First off, if you always have something to look forward to, you’ll be immeasurably happier than if life is just one long line of spreadsheets and tax forms and carpools. Second, going on vacations together lets you reconnect with who you are when you aren’t tending to a screaming child, stressing over a work project or socializing with acquaintances you don’t like that much. Who you are on vacation is who you are—relaxed, playful, adventurous and affectionate. Be that way as often as you can. Vacation as often as you can.

Always vacation First off, if you always have something to look forward to, you’ll be immeasurably happier than if life is just one long line of spreadsheets and tax forms and carpools. Second, going on vacations together lets you reconnect with who you are when you aren’t tending to a screaming child, stressing over a work project or socializing with acquaintances you don’t like that much. Who you are on vacation is who you are—relaxed, playful, adventurous and affectionate. Be that way as often as you can. Vacation as often as you can.

Have sex, even when you don’t want to

It’s amazing how an orgasm makes you completely forget whatever household chore you were just arguing about. Having sex helps your body produce hormones that make you feel closer to your partner. You naturally want to fight less when you have sex more. Don’t just have sex when you’re getting along perfectly—the sex will make you get along.

Have sex, even when you don’t want to It’s amazing how an orgasm makes you completely forget whatever household chore you were just arguing about. Having sex helps your body produce hormones that make you feel closer to your partner. You naturally want to fight less when you have sex more. Don’t just have sex when you’re getting along perfectly—the sex will make you get along.

 

Go for the spacious home

If you have to choose between the luxury, newly-renovated place that is rather small or the slightly older place that is larger, go for the older place. Granite countertops and five-speed showers do not help you get along; having space helps you get along. His and her closets, his and her bathrooms, and a guest room—these are the things that help make a marriage work.

Go for the spacious home If you have to choose between the luxury, newly-renovated place that is rather small or the slightly older place that is larger, go for the older place. Granite countertops and five-speed showers do not help you get along; having space helps you get along. His and her closets, his and her bathrooms, and a guest room—these are the things that help make a marriage work.

Cocktails go a long way

Hey—these aren’t my words! They come from the couple celebrating their 35-year anniversary. A nice cocktail suddenly makes that laundry your partner has yet to fold or those dishes your partner always puts in the wrong place seem really unimportant. You can’t drink away significant relationship disputes, but you can drink away frivolous stress over things like putting the toilet seat down.

Cocktails go a long way Hey—these aren’t my words! They come from the couple celebrating their 35-year anniversary. A nice cocktail suddenly makes that laundry your partner has yet to fold or those dishes your partner always puts in the wrong place seem really unimportant. You can’t drink away significant relationship disputes, but you can drink away frivolous stress over things like putting the toilet seat down.

Vow to hate the people he hates

Be on your partner’s side outwardly, even if you are not on his side inwardly. That means that if your partner needs to hate a coworker, you hate that coworker too. Even if, on the inside, you know that person isn’t that bad and your partner is being critical (perhaps because he’s jealous of the coworker) it’s your job to be on your partner’s side. Sometimes you need to choose between making nice with some acquaintance who really doesn’t matter to you, and getting along with your spouse. It should be an easy choice when you look at it that way.

Vow to hate the people he hates Be on your partner’s side outwardly, even if you are not on his side inwardly. That means that if your partner needs to hate a coworker, you hate that coworker too. Even if, on the inside, you know that person isn’t that bad and your partner is being critical (perhaps because he’s jealous of the coworker) it’s your job to be on your partner’s side. Sometimes you need to choose between making nice with some acquaintance who really doesn’t matter to you, and getting along with your spouse. It should be an easy choice when you look at it that way.

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