Gary's blog for couples and parents plus resources for individuals, leaders and churches.

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Is Your Spouse Still Your Best Friend?

How many times do you hear it at a wedding or see it celebrated on Facebook years later?  Today (or on their anniversary) they say, I married my best friend. And that's a good thing. How wonderful that a two people grew through a wonderful, deep, meaningful friendship and decided to marry? Maybe you've said it and totally meant it.

The problem is that many couples have lost the reality of being best friends. They have no time for it anymore. I mean, don't best friends just naturally find time for each other, listen, talk without time limits, find things to do that they both like, do spontaneous things, dream dreams and laugh a lot, just to name a few?

But how many couples after a year or two or more would have to honestly say they've lost most of those friend-like actions? I would guess that most argue that they have jobs that demand more commitment, kids who require more attention and possessions that need more maintenance. We struggled too.

But if we have no time for each other to act like friends, then frankly we're not best friends anymore. We can say it publicly and sound romantic, but we're not. Sorry, but your friendship is over or at least on hold for a while.

The good news is that our excuses can be set aside and we can go back to a friend-filled marriage if we'll commit to several things. But I need to warn you . . . they can be a challenge for some.

First, build more margin into your family world. Yes, a few things might have to go or be cut back but is your marriage relationship worth it?  It should be. Make it that way. Shove some of the less important things out.

Second, intentionally put some friend actions back into your world. No, that need not require some some sort of schedule or fancy programming. Too much regulation will make it an obligation more than something enjoyable. But you will likely need to plan some spaces and ideas - coffees, lunches, evenings out or afternoons free - that will make it more natural to slide into a friendly activity. The more you do them the more natural and anticipated they can become.

Third, if you're a parent, you need to get over your child or children being the sole important focus of your lives. Great marriages based on friendship can never put their relationship on hold for the sake of their children's well-being alone. Where will your kids learn how to be married themselves, be friends and keep growing in body, soul and spirit? Yes, kids complicate things and may even reduce the frequency of your friend commitments at times, but never let parenting stop you from acting like your married . . . and friends.

So if you're going to say that your spouse is still your best friend, then man-up or woman-up and commit to living like it again if you're not currently. In today's culture, friends are hard enough to find. Don't forget about the one closest to home!
Gary Sinclair Writer | Speaker | Leader

Gary is currently a consultant, teacher, speaker and chaplain providing resources for families, leaders and churches.

1 comment:

  1. Aged parents, who need care and live in your home, can also get in the way of older couples friendships. Ask me how I know!