Is it possible for a couple to stay connected over a lifetime together? Every couple goes through a series of phases in their marriage. It’s important for a husband and wife to navigate each of these phases with the goal of ending up together in the later years of their life in a marriage they truly value and cherish.
When I think about our first few years of marriage, life was simple. I was working, and Nancy was going to school and then working. Sure, we had our struggles, but we were getting to know each other at a deeper level. We had few distractions from our marriage. That was phase one for us—those early years of marriage without kids.
Phase two started when the kids came, and they were an incredible blessing. Our marriage grew during that time, but it was different than before. There were now four of us, and the kids took a lot of time and energy. We had to be very intentional about our time together as husband and wife. I think raising kids is the perfect example of the idea that “the days are long, but the years go really fast.” I thought the diaper years would never end!
Then came the empty-nest years as the kids left home and began their journeys as adults. If couples can navigate the “kids at home” years well and stay connected and intentional in their relationship, this transition to the empty-nest phase can go pretty smoothly. If, however, couples neglect their relationship while raising their kids, this transition to the empty-nest phase can be very trying.
What phase are you currently in? How is your marriage doing? What would make it better? What will you do today to make it better?