Someone wise once told me “every trait a person has becomes magnified in marriage.”
While at the time I believed that was wisdom, I did not understand it fully until I got married myself. Fast forward to today and let me tell you, my husband has some major flaws. And I can guarantee I have even more. I constantly forget to put the trash bag liner in the trashcan and my husbands’ beard hair finds itself all over the sink. My husband throws his clothes next to the hamper, and I constantly wash clothes and never move them to the dryer. We’re trying really hard to stay in love, but when we are tired or irritable, these little things have the potential to blow up.
So, what do you do when your spouse has flaws?
Yes, you read that correctly. When your spouse has flaws, forgive them. I can promise you that you would like the same courtesy extended to you. Also, it is true in marriage, and in life, that what we focus on in others shades how we look at them overall. When you think about your spouse, do you want to see them as only the sum of their mistakes? No? Then forgive them.
Focus On Their Positive Traits
Like I said, what we focus on in others paints how we look at them overall. So, with that said, what is your partner good at? What are some ways that they love you, even when you don’t deserve it? What do you love about them? Focus on these things so that your posture toward them is one of gratitude and not critique.
Remember Your Own Faults
In middle school the biggest burn we could say to someone was something like, “YEAH!? Well, it takes one to know one!” The same is true in marriage. You recognize the flaws in your partner because you are an inherently flawed individual yourself. You might also focus on the flaws in your spouse so that you can forget about your own, but in a healthy marriage there is no room for behaviors like this. So, spend time working on becoming a better partner, friend, and lover to your significant other, instead.
Go The Extra Mile
This one is hard, but makes all the difference. The next time your spouse leaves the milk out, forgets to put a new liner in the trash can, only empties half of the dishwasher, forgets to drop off the dry cleaning, or leaves their beard hair in the sink…. take care of the chore for them silently, and the next time you see them, greet them with a kiss or a hug.
You see, in marriage, we can’t sweat the small stuff. Extend grace to one another. In this feat, your love can only grow.
Written by Anna Collins
Anna Collins lives in sunny Southern California with her husband and two children. She is passionate about her marriage, staying at home with her kids, writing, coffee, good conversation, and game night. Her life dream is to someday write a book and see it published.