A Husband's Guide to : Office Spouses

The average America spends around 46 - 50 hours per week working.  This should not surprise most of you because I am sure you fit into this statistic.  I have found that most people create work relationships that mimic outside work relationships.  I have a few really close friends that I could talk to about almost anything, and I also have a few really close work friends that I could also talk to about almost anything.  I rarely see my work friends outside of work, I don't really know why this phenomenon occurs but my outside work friends all describe something similar. We just have work friends and not-work friends.  Sure sometimes a work friend transcends the typical role and becomes an outside work friend but the truth of the matter is that is not always the case. 

So if we can accept the fact that we have work friends, then we must accept that the role of work spouse also occurs.  Our "real" spouse fulfills so many different roles, however the work spouse usually just fills in for one role.  Now before I begin my regularly scheduled TheHusBlog Definition Pause I want to make one thing crystal clear.  The office spouse is not a surrogate for our wife while at work, nor does this relationship involve any sexual component(in most cases).  So without further ado :

TheHusBlog Definition Pause : Types of Work Spouses

  • Venting Board : This work spouse is the one you go to for all your venting needs.  Often at work we have to put on a happy face when being told something that makes us want to scream some rather not nice words.  The venting board is that person that you can calmly and quietly walk into their office, shut the door, and then let loose a stream of obscenities that would make Howard Stern blush.
  • Partner in Crime : This is the person that you leave the office with.  Often a lunch or errand buddy, this person is cool to hang out with, or at the very least has a pleasant demeanor.  This may not be the type of person you would share your deepest darkest secrets with, but they are someone who you can feel like yourself around.  This office spouse is often of the same sex.
  • Counselor : We often like to separate work and home life but sometimes they bleed into one another.  A fight with your spouse might make you grumpy(did I just use the word grumpy, I am getting old) at work and you might need to talk it out with someone.  That is where the Counselor comes in.  This work spouse is a person whom you have equal footing with (you both are in similar work positions, similar type marriages, similar life experiences, etc.) Often this person is someone whom(I think it is whom instead of who?) you can talk about relationship problems with.  
  • Day Dreamer : This is the guy/gal who organizes the group Lotto Tickets.  Someone who you talk to about what you are going to do when you make it/win the lotto/become independently wealthy.  In short this is a dreamer.  We all like to escape the dull drum of our work life and talk about our plans  when we don't have to work for a paycheck.  This person is a great escape and allows us to dream of a life where we can go to work because we want to, rather than because we have to.  
  • Care Giver : This is the most self less of the work spouses.  This is the person who makes sure you eat lunch when you are in a ton of meetings, or brings you coffee when you need a pick me up.  This person makes sure that you take care of yourself.  This is also the most intimate of the work spouses and should be watched out for.  To be a care giver work spouse means that you have to think of the other person when they are not around, while this can be endearing to the receiver, it must also be watched with a careful eye.  These are the types of relationships that can move to something inappropriate.  It is human nature to want to be thought about, but if you have someone of the opposite sex that you are close to, anticipating your needs too well, it might be a sign that, that person wants to be more than friends. 
Work spouses fill a need that we all lack.  We need someone in our corner at work, because, unless you work with your wife, you don't get.  I can say in my research that 90% of these relationships are harmless, but we all should be on the look out for those people that might want a little bit more, if you catch my drift.

The longer we are married the more accustomed we become to certain things and often when we don't have access to them (such is the case at work) we find surrogates.  These surrogates are not a replacement to our spouses, in fact, usually the opposite, they are shadows of what we can get at home, but they do help to make the days at work seem more bearable.

Before I continue I have to share a sobering statistic : 75% of Men and 65% of Women admit to having sex with people they work with (http://www.womansavers.com/infidelity-statistics.asp).  Now, sure, that stat is just for people, not "Married People" but you have to be on the look out for someone who might tempt you.  Being married can be about endurance sometimes.  Things will not always go perfectly at home so you have to be vigilant and make sure you do not expose yourself to someone who might make you do something wrong.

Work relationships are important, you spend so much time there, that you have to find a way to connect with people, just make sure that when you have a work spouse, that the relationship doesn't cross a line.  Look out for the warning lights (your door might be ajar, see the blog on warning lights for more details).  But in the end strive to be the husband who is trustworthy, honest, and caring.  Just remember that who you go home to, should be the person you always want to go home to.


Things Men Like

To be subtitled, "I really hope my wife reads this!!!!"

To us men the list I am about to present below seems so freakin' simple.  Men are visual, physical creatures and if our wives did just one of the things listed below we would be in heaven...  This is not to say that men do not appreciate all the little things our wives' do, but, in truth there are just a few simple things, that if done, will have your husband eating out of your hand.

  • Sexy/Slutty Outfits : First of all please understand that we would like these outfits for our eyes only, but if randomly our wife shows up in a sexy outfit, well, let's just say your man will be like putty in your hand ladies.
  • Oral : I really do not want to get too graphic here, but during courtship, certain oral pleasures are abundant, however after marriage, that department seems to get fired if you get my drift.  If that area of marriage comes back, then I think you will find your husband to be VERY HAPPY.
  • Party Wife at Home : Look ladies, when we first got married you would party with us no matter what the venue.  It could be out with friends, or at home with just the two of us.  Now it seems that you will cut loose with your girlfriends when you are out on a "girl's night" with us husbands left at home to only hold your hair back as your are puking.  Remember the days, during courtship when you would get a little tipsy and come after us like the lionesses we know you are... We miss that.
  • Dirty Talk : Wives, before they were wives used to say some of the most dirty things to us men, please let us know what we can do to bring that behavior back, please?
  • Telling Us What You Want : During courtship, it would be easy for you to say what you wanted from us.  Please remember that we will do whatever you want, if you just give us a clue.  This does not have to be sexual, just tell us what you want and we will more than likely do it.
This is by no means an exhaustive list and I would be interested to see if any has anything to add, which is of course what the comments are for...


A Husband's Guide to : Sex Part 1

Okay, look, let me be totally honest here.  There is no way I am going to cover Sex in one post, three posts, hell even ten posts, so my feeble attempt will be to break down the Topic of Sex and cover it as I have time but I will not cover it in any type of sequence, so hey fellas, just like the act of Sex itself you will have to take my Sex postings as they come...
I know what you are thinking, "But TheHusBlog, you are the only one I can count on for marriage advice, if you do not tackle this one, then how am I to get some?"  Well either that or, "Seriously, one last time 'TheHusBlog' is just a strange way to refer to yourself, I mean are you the author of the website, the website itself, or some disembodied entity that named itself poorly."  To which I have to respond that all relationships are different and to cover Sex with any real thought would be too much in one sweep so I will break down parts and pieces as I am inspired to do so.  So without further ado(always wanted to say that) I give you...

TheHusBlog Definition Pause : Challenges to the Married Man getting sex
  • You : Let us take a minute to think about ourselves.  Fellas, do you look better now or when you first met your wife.  The answer is probably when you met your wife.  Nothing to be ashamed of but when we are single we spend more time on our appearance, we work out more(or at all, you know who I am talking to), and we try harder in all aspects of our relationship.  You have to change your mindset back to what it was when you were courting your lady love.  Take pride in yourself, dress up for dinner rather than wearing those old ratty jeans and KISS T-Shirt from 1987.  Take note of the clothes your wife hates and stop wearing them.  If she tells you that you look good in a certain outfit than WEAR IT MORE!  Remember that your wife does not have to sleep with you, YOU need to make her want to sleep with you.  So maybe hit the gym, watch what you eat, and wear what SHE thinks looks good on you.  Be like a peacock and strut a little, show off what you know she likes.
  • The Rules have Changed :  There is no good way to put this and I am not going to blame men or women for this mindset but the truth of the matter is Sex is like a reward.  Think about it, if you as a husband, take care of choirs, clean up the house, take your wife out for a great dinner (not talking The Sizzler here people!), and have a really good night out, the expectation is going to be sex.  I am not saying this is right or wrong but during the courtship if all those things occurred your "Girlfriend" would more than likely show you some attention.  But now as a husband all of those things are expected.  As a married man you can feel like the rules have changed, and the old ways are not the new ways, and that is true.  The bar does raise when you get married and at the beginning it is fun and rewarding but as time goes on you can get kind of pissed off that the things that used to net the best results are now like the bare minimum.  You have to stop being bitter and re-train yourself as to what turns your partner on.  In the dating days it was showing your affection through the standard channels : Dinner, Movie, Listening.  Now it takes a different set of tools : Empathizing, Connecting, Seduction. Forge the bond with her that makes her feel safe and like she has a partner and you should see results.  A back rub or two without expectations will also go a long way in securing a few back rubs WITH expectations.
  • Situation : Pick the right time for seduction as well.  We as men have to face facts that some days sex is just not in the cards.  Remember that just because we can be ready at a moment's notice does not mean our partner will be.  You have to sense when the time is right.  Often times if your spouse makes a point to say she is going to bed earlier than normal, you should go too.  Often times if she gives you THAT look, you should make your move.  Often times if she is more touchy than normal you should keep touching back.  One thing to keep in mind.  If you make a move and get shot down, DO NOT BE BITTER!  Be the understanding Husband, offer to cuddle while she falls asleep or rub her shoulders, because you are setting the stage for success another night!  And remember to make her feel sexy, because if she feels good about herself, she will make yourself feel good.  (That was a word play that I am not sure worked, but I am going to keep it anyway)
  • Boredom : I hate to say it but we all fall into ruts, and even I (TheHusBlog) am no exception.  Remember that sex should feel good and be fun.  So if you have been doing the same position for the past couple of years it might be time to shake things up.  Try to broach the subject of sexual fantasies with your wife and see if she is willing talk about them, and if she is do not laugh or make fun but listen.  That information will be key to your plans to make both her and you more interested in sex.  Oh and let me just say now I am 99.999999999% her sexual fantasy does not involve you, her, and another woman so put that out of your head now.
  • Sexpectations : Do not get all pissed off if the situation does not go exactly according to plan.  Nothing will kill the mood faster than whining.  Example, you and your wife go out for a night on the town.  She is wearing a sexy black dress with thigh highs, and killer high heeled shoes.  Now cut to the end of the evening and she changes the second(often before you can blink) you get home into pajama pants and one of your old T-shirts.  Look, believe me, I know, you thought you were going to be writing your letters to penthouse forum letter and now you might as well write your Better Homes and Gardens Chicken Cassarole recipe.  But take heart, that hot, sexy, fine, woman is still there, she just wanted to get comfortable.  Snuggle up with her, touch her, tell her how amazing she looked tonight, and even now in pj's.  Because you know that while you were out every man was just a little jealous of you.  Hold on to the feelings in the moment they occur and recall them when the moment for intimacy strikes.  Just because the thigh highs aren't on, doesn't mean the legs are any less awesome, get my drift.
Sex comes easy in the early part of a relationship and it lulls us into a false sense of security.  If you love your wife, she is worth the effort.  If you honor your marriage, it is worth the effort, and if you enjoy sex, it is seriously worth the effort.  So make yourself the Man she wants to be with by avoiding the pitfalls that so many men fall into. 

I know, I know, when you got married you thought you were beyond all this effort.  You thought that once you put a ring on it you proved your devotion so she should prove hers.  But things don't work out the way we plan, and we must adapt.  If men are from Mars and women are from Venus you just have to plan a good holiday for you both on Earth...


Terms of Desire

There are just some things that our wives can say to us that make us feel like a million bucks, sure I love you is always a good one in conveying commitment and caring.  But for those other times we love it when our wife says...

  • Want You - Yes, we love that one.  That means that our wife is thinking of us in a way that makes us feel awesome, well that is unless after want you is "to take out the trash."
  • Need You - Let's be honest, I need you is HOT.  It makes us men feel like if our wives have to have us, which makes a man feel like a million bucks.
  • Have to have you - This reeks of desperation, which all men love(within committed relationships). We want to make our wives crazy with desire, so if we can we will...
  • Adore you - Adore is a sweet word, it means something intimate and caring, so of course we love it.  I adore you makes us feel like a good husband.
I know there are tons of other ones, which means you know what I want...  Put some other options in the comments because I would love to read them...


A Husband's Guide to : Warning Lights

I found an interesting stat the other day.  The average America's commute is 46 minutes of drive time round trip.  That means if a person has 2 weeks of vacation per year and lets just say 2 weeks of sick time and works for 35 years, then they spend 1,288 hours in their car go to and from work which equates to 53.6 DAYS!  That does not include all the driving they do on errands, road trips, and what have you. 

I love my car, it is comfortable and reliable, it is not the fastest car on the road, but she always gets me where I am going.  And while contemplating my car I thought about all the warning lights that have popped up over the years and I wondered what would my marriage warning lights be...

TheHusBlog Definition Pause : Warning Lights
  • Maintenance Required : This warning light means you might need to do some chores around the house.  We all get a little complacent every now and then.  But if your wife has told you for the 15th time to pick up your socks it might be time to pick up the socks.  Chores are a natural part of marriage and they should always be in balance.  However life sometimes gets in the way and one person in the relationship might have to carry the extra load for time.  Keep in mind though, the person carrying the extra burden will start to get pretty pissed off if they carry it for too long.  Maybe you are having a rough week at work and working long hours, your spouse will step in and probably do a little extra at home, but do not become too used to it.  Once your work levels out step back in to help out around the house because if one person is cleaning the kitchen while the other is watching TV...well let's just say the dashboard is going to light up.
  • Check Engine : Why are you married?  The engine is what pushes the car forward. What pushes your marriage forward.  I know, I know, you love your spouse, that is why you are married, right?  Sure that is true, but what made you fall in love with them.  When the relationship starts to become routine you have to avoid being lost to the dull drum beat of I am married, I am married.  Instead remember why you fell in love with your spouse and do activities the re-ignite that spark.  Did you fall in love because of common interest, did you fall in love because of twisted sense of humor you both share, or because you could talk for hours... 
  • Coolant Low :  Fighting a bit too much over stupid stuff might mean you both need some more coolant.  If you get too involved with one another an you don't have something for yourself that brings you joy then you might need a hobby.  Being married is great but that doesn't mean you have to share EVERYTHING.  You both should find something that you love to do separately that helps you relax.  This could be anything from reading a good book, to taking fencing classes, either way find something for just you to do and that will help give perspective when you both are in a knock down drag out fight over who is better at snorkeling.
  • Check Battery : Are you feeling low energy?  I have a term for this (NFI = Not Feeling It).  Sure, sometimes you just don't have the energy to put into your marriage.  But unfortunately marriage is one of things you always have to find the energy for.  Check your motivation, because you should want to make your spouse happy.  We all cannot be 100% gung-ho everyday, but if you are going through a period of constant low energy maybe it is time to shift your priorities.
  • Low Fuel Light : A marriage runs, in my opinion on shared opinions, joint history, and common goals.  So, if your fuel is running low perhaps you are missing some of those.  The flames of love do need to fanned every now and again (I do beg my readers forgiveness at that lame metaphor).  So if you are man you might be reading this as SEX if you are a woman you might be reading this as INTIMACY.  Which one is right you say : Well both.  You have to be having the physical act of love(sex), and you have to have the emotional act of love connection(intimacy).  Oh and by the way guys, do not ever say "Hey our Love Tank is low so let's do it and talk and stuff."  Instead create the right mood, set the stage with a nice date night out (something she would want to do), and be on your best behavior, never make sex a chore by bringing up how long it has been, or by quoting the Bible on her "womanly duties."  Set the right mood and if you do not know what would turn her on, ask her!
  • Door Ajar : Oh my gosh your door has become a jar!  Just kidding.  If my overall metaphor stands true then your marriage is like a car and you do not want to leave a door open where anyone can just get in.  We all deal with temptation, and as the marriage goes on and starts to feel stale, we might leave a passenger door open slightly to let someone else in.  BIG MISTAKE!  Mind your thoughts, do not even entertain them.  What you think is a little harmless flirting now could snowball into something you cannot take back later. 
That might be my longest Definition Pause to date.  I talk a lot about being a partner to your spouse however sometimes it can be just as important to be a passenger.  Relationships work best for both parties when you share time in the driver's seat.  Perhaps you move for the other's career, or take up a hobby just to make the other person happy, but you must remember to switch off.  Staying to long at the driver's seat puts you and your spouse at risk.  Just remember to check your mirrors, buckle your seat belt, drive the speed limit and of course mind the warning signs.


Terms of Compliments

Let me set the stage.  You are waiting patiently for you wife to be done getting ready for your date night.  As you sit on the bed you hear the bathroom door open and your wife walks out in a slinky black dress, high heels, and fabulous make-up, now you have some options as to what comes out of your mouth.

Baby, you look...
  • Hot - To be honest this is a good one in my book, Hot indicates that your wife will turn some heads wherever you go.  Now lets get real for a minute, Hot is more carnal than emotional but come on don't we all need a little bit more carnal in our marriage.
  • Stunning - Okay use this term more than you do now.  I love "stunning" it connotates that your wife looks so good that your are stunned.
  • Beautiful - A classic, works when you want your wife to feel like she is shining like a diamond.
  • Pretty - Okay guys, do not use this.  I hate pretty, not nearly a good enough word for compliments.
  • Sexy - Don't use this one either, it is too played out.  Instead of telling your wife she is sexy, make her feel sexy by touching, teasing, and tempting.
  • Awesome, and I do not mean awesome in "this pizza is awesome."  I mean awesome in this sense : "inspiring or displaying awe." 
I am sure that I have missed some so please do me a favor a put your favorites in the comments, I would love to read them.


A Husband's Guide to : The Win

I was watching Glee the other night (no judgement people, I happen to like the show, what of it?!).  I discovered how much a "win" can bring people together.  A solo victory is great, makes you feel good, and probably inspires you to take on more.  But a team victory is even better, because it...  Well you know what I am going to do :

TheHusBlog Definition Pause : What Winning can do for a Team
  • Energize the group : A small win can help a group get pumped up and ready for a bigger project.  The group gets excited and that excitement brings the group closer together.
  • Creates a shared memory : Shared memories can help a group re-connect.  Members might drift apart and change, but that memory can help being the team back together.
  • Inspire other actions : A small victory can snowball into a medium victory and then a large one.  Once you have had success, your confidence level grows and you are inspired to try something harder.
Everyone loves winning, and for a couple, it can be a critical shot in the arm when things are at their darkest.  Marriages can ebb and flow and sometimes you can feel like Sisyphus(Google it) forever toiling to make your marriage work.  Remember your vows "Richer or poorer, sickness and health, till death do you part...etc." well sometimes is can seem you are in a cycle of poorer and sickness, ya know what I mean?  But a win can help you come out of that cycle and grow together as a couple.

Sure this sounds great in theory but how do you put it into practice right, how often do "wins" come up, right?  Well the real key is to just be ready for them when they do appear.  It might come in the form of a diy project that you two do together, or maybe you both win at a couple's game night, but more often than not they come in the form of one winner and one supporter.  Let me explain :

You and your spouse are a team and as such when one gets a win the other is always partially responsible.  If you get a promotion at work, it is due to your hard work and the support of your spouse.  She listened to you struggle with work issues, helped alleviate stress after rough days, and threw out ideas when you were at a cross roads. If you spend a moment thinking about it, everything you do is possible because of your partner.  And once you recognize it, you will be able to share your success with her, and because you model the behavior that you want, she will in turn share her success with you. 

Staying married for any extending period of time in today's society is a win in and of itself.  We are constantly bombarded with life's problems all while trying to keep a partner happy.  It is not easy to keep a marriage working perfectly all the time, in fact it is impossible.  There will be fights, problems, and issues.  The key is take the opportunity to rise above them when you are presented with it.  Sharing your successes is important to not only show the value you place on your partner, but to help you realize their value to you as well.  As Pat Benetar once said "Love is a battlefield" just make sure you and your partner are on the same side.


Terms of Couple Descriptions

After a couple years of being married you and your spouse's thoughts start to sync up.  The first thing we as married couples do (it is mostly subconscious so don't worry if you don't realize you do it) is put our couple friends into categories.  So how many times have you and your spouse said :

They are a...
  • Cute Couple - You're wife is going to say this rather than you.  Mainly because "cute" is not a word that comes out of most men's mouth easily.  "Cute" couples tend to be here today and gone tomorrow, when you refer to a couple as "cute" it means that there is nothing else nice to say.
  • Power Couple - The power couples are the ones where each member has a occupation that demands attention.  Usually when Lawyers, PR Execs, Doctors, CEOs, Artists, etc. get together.  This couple often does amazing things, but because of their schedules they only get to do them rarely.
  • Passionate Couple - Fighting or sex is usually the hallmark of a passionate couple.  It also seems to be the kind way to describe a couple that fights so much you and your spouse are not sure why they are married.
  • Crazy Couple - These are the couples that hanging out with is a detriment to your health.  Often they are the hard partying couple that is hard to keep up with.  Your wife will probably want to steer clear of them most of the time, however when she does want to hang out with them, buckle up because it is going to be a bumpy ride.
  • Drama Couple - I am exhausted just thinking about defining this couple.  We all have at least one, the couple that you feel like just shouldn't be together because they are not only always fighting, but dragging your happy ass into it as well.  Usually your wife sides with her and you side with him and before your know it, their fight becomes your fight...  What the hell is up with that!  I try to stay away from this type of couple because it is just too much.
I know that you can think of a bunch more so leave them in the comment section I would love to read them...


A Husband's Guide to : Game Shows

I know what you are thinking, "Okay TheHusBlog, I have been reading you for a little bit and I cannot see how a game show has anything to do with marriage.  I mean come on dude, this is a stretch even for you!"  Well that or, "Can you just refer to yourself as Kyle, how about that name...  Way better than TheHusBlog."  I know it doesn't seem like marriage has a lot to do with game shows, well other than the consolation prizes...(HEY-OOOOOOO!).  I kid, I kid...

This concept occurred to me a couple days ago when I was thinking about all the game shows that have lasted the test of time.  Shows like Wheel of Fortune, Jeopardy, Family Feud, and The Price is Right have lasted decades, where as prime time TV has been bombarded with here and popular for today, gone tomorrow shows like Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, Deal or No Deal, Million Dollar Money Drop, and The Weakest Link.  It got me thinking what makes the classics still have appeal today and what makes all these new "glitzy" (remember, might need to change the word glitzy, 1, not sure it is a real word.  2, sounds a little silly) shows come out and then fade.  Well you know what happens when I get thinking, it means it might be time for a(survey says...)

TheHusBlog Definition Pause : What makes game shows stand the test of time
  • The show is affordable : Seriously, if you think about it we as a society have fallen into this BIGGER and BIGGER mentality and so game shows have followed suit.  Sure watching someone compete for a million bucks may be entertaining for a while, but it takes a lot of ratings to keep a show afloat so the minute the show gets too expensive it is out.  Now think about Ken Jennings on Jeopardy.  He won 3.1 Million but he was on the show for 75 episodes in a row.  That means if I do my math right he won on average 41K per show which is affordable. 
  • The Rules should be easy to follow : If you have to watch the show a few times to get what is going on, then the rules are too complicated or cryptic.  Take Deal or No Deal as an example.  Now it seems a simple premise, but think back to when you first watched it.  "So picking a 1 dollar case after you have selected your case is good because that means that the contestant's case may have a higher amount so that means that when the banker calls he will offer a higher amount because of the probability that the contestant has a high value case is better..."(I know a serious run on sentence, but it was done on purpose)  Wait, What?  Really?  Yeah I know we all love Howie and make jokes about his OCD, but in truth that game show was just a little too much.
  • The show should be good without Drama!  It is a cheap ploy to use commercial breaks to inspire drama and all the prime time game shows have it.  Alex Trebek never asked "I am a blogger who writes about marriage in a light-hearted but observant light."  And the contestant was about to answer "Who is TheHusBlog", when Alex says, "We will have to wait until after these messages"  It doesn't happen on the classics because there is not need for false drama.
  • The show should be about the contestant's skills : No one wants to watch a bunch of no-talent people make money.  It is more fun to watch a show where some sort of skill is involved.  Another time when most new prime time game shows fail.  Paris Hilton makes most people crazy because she is famous for being famous.  No one wants to see someone who is a moron win money that they don't deserve.  Good decision making, common sense, and knowledge should be the hallmarks of an awesome game show's winners.
Now I know what you are thinking, "Okay TheHusBlog I see what you are doing, and I get it, nice parallel, there, I bet you are going to wrap it in a nice little bow now."  Or you are thinking, "Okay you don't like Kyle, how about Steve?"

I will say that I am a Christian so I have a definite faith, however, I also believe that all life is interconnected so one thing can teach us about something else entirely.  That belief is why when I thought about game shows I was able to see how they can teach us so much about marriage.  Okay so I just made a bold, sweeping statement, which means it might be time for...

Another TheHusBlog Definition Pause : Game Show Caveats and Marriage
  • The Marriage Must Be Affordable : If your marriage is based on money then it is more than likely going to fail.  This goes for gifts too.  You should never use money/gifts to get out of trouble, instead gifts should be to show affection and be more meaningful than expensive. 
  • The Marriage Must Not Have Cryptic Rules : Your partner or you should not have to infer what you or they are thinking based on a complex set of situational variables.  Nor should you set expectations falsely like "Let's not do anything for Valentine's Day."  And then one person does do something for Valentine's Day and the other person is left to feel stupid.  Keep the rules clean and easy to follow, it is not only fair, but keeps everyone in control.
  • The Marriage Should Be Good, WITHOUT Drama : Look, I know that passionate fights can lead to some passionate make-ups but that should not be the standard.  Marriage, when done successfully, should feel like a walk on the beach, not a roller coaster.  When we are younger those dizzying highs, and deep lows can make things seem more passionate, but in truth it is just drama and does not equate to a good and balanced relationship.
  • The Marriage Should Be Based on Skills : Don't marry someone because they are hot, or because they are rich.  Either of those things can or will fade with time.  Instead enjoy your relationship based on the conversations, the cute inside jokes, or the familiar views that you both share.  In the lean times, the hard times, money does not comfort, and hotness does not forgive.  However a true, deep connection allows for the resolution of issues.
So there it is, I have drawn a parallel between Marriage and Game Shows, other bloggers might be impressed but for me it is just another Wednesday.  Again, I kid...  I spend a lot of time thinking about my marriage and how I can make it better for not just my spouse but for me as well.  Insight can come in many forms and fashions and you should always talk about your observations/thoughts with your significant other.  Be the person that you want to be, not the person you think you are.  Strive to connect, be compassionate, and never be cumbersome.

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