Did You Know?
Know Their Place.
There is a place for everyone in your life and sometimes it depends on the occasion. There is a place for your friends and there is a place for your family members. When you are in a relationship, you don't relegate your friends and family to the side because you are in love. I understand that in extreme cases you have to be watchful of the kinds of friends you keep because some can be toxic to your life but that begs the question as to why you are still with such a toxic person anyway?
As I was saying, there is a place for everyone. Most people major on the minor and then minor on the major. As a married person, you have to understand the place of your friends and family members. I've seen situations where others play the moral card the moment they got married. They stopped relating to their single friends because they feel they are no longer in the same class. It shouldn't be and doesn't have to be but prioritizing helps a lot to understand what matters to you because when the value of a thing isn't known, abuse is inevitable.
Your marriage is the most important relationship you have and it should come first. You don't prioritize your friends over your marriage. I understand it's all about understanding but when push comes to shove and you have to choose in extreme cases, your marriage should come first. It’s important to know the kind of relationships that could potentially cause problems in your marriage and then leave them behind. It doesn't mean you have to ditch everyone because you don't get along with them but you can set healthy boundaries and determine the time you spend with those family and friends.
Marriage is a private affair and as I would call it a private party between two people, so three is definitely a crowd. They all have their place which is to pray with you, share ideas with you and help you see opportunities. This is why I said you can't rule them out but you have to understand their place and know your immediate family is more important. It doesn't mean you have to go blabbing to them when anything happens (except in extreme cases of domestic violence) but you can build up closeness with them and not at the cost of your marriage anyway.
I know most people struggle with parents that show up uninvited and in fear of not causing enmity most couples just take it in stride while they suffer in silence. As a couple, if that person is from your side, then you are the one to set the ground rules and let them understand that they need to call you before they visit. I recently told someone this when it happened that her mother-in-law always shows up uninvited and even the son, which is the husband isn't too pleased with it.
I told them when it's getting near to the weekend that she usually shows up, they should find a place to go. In fact, I asked them to visit me that weekend and they did. So, when the mother shows up (because she lives nearby and I presume she has a key too) and she didn't meet them at home, naturally it becomes an easy conversation for them to have with her that she needs to call before visiting to avoid such a situation next time. When it happens more than once, she would learn how to call. The same thing applies to friendship. You have to agree with your spouse and when the agreement cannot be reached, you have to prioritize your marriage instead.
Stand Your Ground.
Standing your ground doesn't mean you have to be rude about it. It's about making them aware of what's obvious. You have a date with your husband or wife and your mother or your friend wants you to follow her to a family function just to mark attendance. I think it's a no-brainer that you have to choose being with your husband or your wife over that family function. Standing your ground would make them understand that you have a family that should be prioritized and it's not disrespecting to them but loyalty to the family you are trying to grow.
Be Your Partner's Advocate.
Don't tell me what's being said about me but tell me why they are comfortable telling it to you. That statement is so true and real. When others badmouth your partner you need to be able to stand up to them and tell them you don't appreciate it, especially when they have no proof and they just pick up on the kind of choice you made. People that respect you are the ones that would respect your choices despite their reservations. Your friends and family members need to understand that you have a life to live and if they want to be a part of it they need to respect your choices. It doesn't mean you won't listen to their advice but you have to choose between speculation and reality.
With all that being said, your partner cannot be everything to you which is why I said you still need your family and friends but boundaries must be set. You need your family and friends for the sake of accountability and support; it could be emotional or financial or just their presence alone around you. You also need them around to encourage you because everything won't be smooth sailing. When you are both down, you need someone trusted to help you both to get back on your feet when life happens in any of the many ways that life can happen.
This post also appeared here and it's my original work on my blog on Read.Cash.
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My tongue is like the pen of a ready writer.
Olawalium; (Love's chemical content, in human form). Take a dose today: doctor's order.
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