Marriage Advice To Cherish, To File Away, And To Ignore

By Dylan Buckley

Updated July 24, 2019

Everyone who is or has been married considers themselves an expert on the subject. As soon as you get engaged, they will naturally assume that you need their seasoned advice to guide you through your entrance to married life. There are a couple of pieces of advice that you will almost certainly hear almost immediately after you break the news to your family and friends.

Some of the most common nuggets that you are most likely to be blessed with are listed and sorted here. Some of the advice that you hear will be good advice that you should hold close to your heart. Some of it will be advised that you may or may not need at some point in your relationship. Some of it will likely be bitter projections or tired clichés that you can probably just ignore.


Marriage Advice To Cherish

Chances are, whoever is giving you marriage advice is doing it because they care about you. Sometimes, they care about themselves more, but we'll get to that later.

Any advice that someone gives you because they honestly want to see you happy and your marriage thrives advice that you should cherish. Here are some common examples.

Never Go To Bed Angry

You've probably heard this mantra before, or seen it embroidered on throw pillows. When you announce your engagement, you'll probably hear it again. Despite how often you've probably encountered it, it's worth listening to.

The sentiment is simple: if you're fighting, come to some kind of understanding before you go to sleep. Going to sleep next to the one that you love is one of the best parts of being married, and you don't want that tainted by going to sleep angry. You're not likely to sleep well, but you are likely to wake up just as angry and have the whole day shot.

That doesn't mean that you have actually to solve your problem before you go to sleep. If you can, that's great, but sometimes it just isn't going to happen. Staying up to try to solve a wicked problem before you turn in can just leave you staying up late and getting crankier as you get sleepier and that's never a good thing.


When that's the case, agree to pick up the discussion some other time when you aren't so tired, say that you love each other and want the best, and then go to sleep. The problem will still be there in the morning, but if you make peace before you go to sleep, you're likely to sleep better and wake up in a cheerier mood that is more conducive to constructive problem-solving.

Marriage Advice To File Away

It's worth saying again: most of the marriage advice that you will receive, you will receive from a place of love. That doesn't mean that it will all apply to you. It deserves some consideration, but it just might not be what you need.

Sign A Prenup

"Prenup" is short for "prenuptial agreement." It's a legal document in which you and your fiancé agree how you will handle the legal complications of a divorce before you get married. A lot of people don't like the idea of prenups because they feel that the whole idea requires the assumption that marriage is going to fail. However, having something written ahead of time can save a lot of confusion and bad blood if you do eventually get a divorce. Besides, there's no harm in having one if you don't get divorced.

In many cases, prenups are more valuable for people who have more assets partially because having more assets makes a divorce more legally complex. If you lead a simpler life, a prenup might not save you that much time and energy if you get a divorce. As a result, whether or not one is right for you depends on your attitudes toward them as well as your situations in life.

You Marry The Family

One common cautionary phrase is "you marry the family." That suggests that when you marry someone, you marry all of their family's problems - of course, you may also be marrying all of their benefits like social support.

This can be necessary, though, in some cases, it depends on how close your betrothed is with their family and how their family operates. Some families are very private, and you may find that your problems and their problems remain quite separate. In some cases, your betrothed may not be very close to the family, or they may not have much family.

In short, this is advice that applies to some people, but that may or may not apply to you. Further, if it does apply to you, it may not be the bad thing that it is often made out to be. The important thing is to sit down with your fiancé and decide together what roles both of you want your respective families to play in your married life.


Marriage Advice To Ignore

Sometimes you'll hear marriage "advice" that isn't meant to help you so much as defend or vindicate someone who has had a bad experience of marriage. This is generally advised that you don't need to carry with you. After all, you have enough to worry about.

Look At The Mother/Father

One common, bitter lamentation is some form or another of "look at the mother." This implies that every woman in a married relationship behaves in that married relationship as her mother does in hers. The same can be said - though is said less often - of men in married relationships. Of course, both versions are ridiculous.

While we do often pick up social cues from our parents, we are just as likely to do so in an inverse fashion. Sometimes we see the things that our parents do and decide that they are normal or good and adopt those behaviors. Sometimes we see things that our parents do and decide that those behaviors are not normal or are not good, and we refuse to adopt those behaviors or even adopt opposite behaviors. Other times, some combination of things is the case. We may like something that our parents did but decide that it isn't appropriate in our situation.

The only place where "look at the mother" may have some form of credibility is in terms of mental health. Many mental health conditions like anxiety and depression often run in families, so if your fiancé's direct relatives have a mental health condition, there is some possibility that they will develop it too. Of course, vetting those we love based on how likely they are to develop traits that may be difficult to deal with is a little … dystopian. Ideally, the person that you marry is someone that you can love and support regardless of how likely they are not to be perfect.

On that note, neither of you are perfect, and it's more important to support the person that you love than it is to love someone you'll never need to support.

Put Everything In Your Name

"Put everything in your name" is a kind of quick and dirty way to get around a prenup. The idea is that if you legally make all of the payments on the house, the car, the utilities, insurance accounts, etc., you'll "hold all the cards" if your relationships hit problems. The other person will be more dependent on you and, the theory goes, you'll get everything if you divorce.

Legally, having payments in your name doesn't necessarily mean that you're getting everything in the event of a divorce. Further, if you think so defensively about a divorce, it's easier and fairer to just go with a prenup.

Potentially, more importantly, insisting on having all of the responsibilities as some kind of power move is a form of emotional abuse. It doesn't protect you in the event of separation so much as it makes the separation more likely. If you both share everything, you'll share equally in all of the responsibilities and benefits and have a more transparent, trusting, and strong relationship.

Learn To Like His/Her Friends

There's nothing wrong with liking your fiancé's friends. However, the idea that you have to or it won't work out is a little too simple. Liking your fiancé's friends is only necessary if you never leave the house alone. You're marrying your partner because you want to spend time with them, but both of you still need time alone and letting them hang out with their friends without tagging along all the time is a great way to ensure that you both get it.

What's more important than liking your fiancé's friends is respecting the fact that you don't have to. Of course, if you do like them, that's just fine too.


When Advice Isn't Enough

Your married friends and family can be an important source of support before and after you run into problems. However, life can be hard sometimes, and you might need a little extra help.

Many couples find that couples' therapy is helpful even if they aren't having problems. That's because marriage counselors specialize in teaching new forms of communication that are great for deepening your relationship even if it's already strong.

If you want to work on some of your problems before suggesting a relationship counselor, one-on-one counseling, and therapy work the same way. That is to say; there doesn't have to be anything "wrong" with you for you to benefit from seeing a specialist.

If you'd like to explore the possibility of seeing a counselor or therapist, you may want to consider meeting with a counselor or therapist online. This is less expensive and more flexible than meeting with a counselor or therapist in person and can be just as effective or even more effective for some people.

For more information about getting started with online therapy or counseling, visit .

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