For the Groom: 5 Steps for Marriage Success
Newlyweds have a sweetness and tenderness that can melt most any heart. Remembering some simple things you used to do while dating, and adding a few new skills can keep those warm feelings glowing. Here are five tips for the groom wanting to be a newlywed for his wife:
1. Play nice
When you think of something nice to say, say it — out loud. Many men feel deep appreciation for their wives, but fail to actually communicate this to them. It is also helpful for her to know when there is something you especially like or appreciate, whether it be a favorite meal or something she did that was helpful in some way.
Remember your wife is not one of the guys, even if she's a tough cookie. Remind her often of the many good reasons you chose her, and how glad you are now that you did.
2. Pick up after yourself
Your wife is your companion, your chosen one, your bride. She is not your mother. Make sure your socks make it into the laundry basket, your tissues make it into the trash, your drawers get closed, and your chair gets pushed in after dinner. If you get something out, put it back where you got it. These are really simple things that will make a big difference to her.
3. Sweep her off her feet
Besides picking up after yourself, remember you live in the same house she does. Help with chores! The more you help with things like dusting and vacuuming and laundry and dishes and diaper changing, the more time and energy she has for other more intimate pursuits with you. Helping with chores may be one of the most romantic things you can do.
4. Remember to clarify
Communication depends on both parties understanding intent and meaning, not just the words being said. When she asks you to run to the store, it's okay to ask her for a specific list. When she rattles off the things she needs done by Saturday, it's okay to get specific about which things she needs you to do to accomplish that plan.
When you aren't sure if you are supposed to be listening and supportive, or listening and problem-solving — ask. Clarify what feels good to her and what makes her uncomfortable.
5. Remember the three T's
Laura M. Brotherson, the author of And They Were Not Ashamed: Strengthening Marriage through Sexual Fulfillment points out that women need talk, touch, and time to feel loved and to be prepared for physical expression of that love. Talking will help your wife feel emotionally connected, time will help her feel appreciated and understood, and non-sexual touch will help her feel loved without the pressure of expectation. This creates a safe and inviting environment in which she can respond with her own demonstrations of love and affection.
The best thing about newlyweds is how they love and care for each other so attentively. Appreciating who your bride is and all she does for you, while consistently helping lighten the load, will show her how delighted you are with her. Remembering the three T's of talk, time, and touch will bring much satisfaction to you both. Love is best expressed through positive words, tender care, and sincere gratitude.