POSTS WITH TAG: marriage

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    After months of dropping hints, visiting jewelers, and quizzing your soon-to-be fiance on your ideal engagement ring, the first time you laid eyes on the diamond he chose, your heart sank.

    While you still wanted to marry him (of course), your once-in-a-lifetime moment was marred by a rock you immediately wanted to exchange -- and he probably felt terrible. What could have prevented that disappointment?

    Enter the placeholder ring: a fake engagement ring to wear until the "real" ring is found.

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    There is a new kind of food fight out there, married couples, and it doesn't involve the throwing of apples or oranges. It's "hanger." And it's real.

    Have you ever been with your husband at 2:00 in the afternoon on the weekend and all of a sudden, apropos of nothing, he's just PISSED?! For us it happens when we have fed the kids, but there is nothing left in the house for us to eat and both of us are too lazy to grab take out. Like clockwork, the Hulk makes an appearance.

    "WHY ARE THE LIGHTS ON AGAIN?!" my husband might scream out of nowhere, his usual polite demeanor becoming a distant memory, veins bulging in his neck, face red. If he were a cartoon, steam would be coming out of his ears. For years, I have wondered what was wrong with this man.

    Now I have an answer: He was "hangry."

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    When we heard the awful news that we'd lost actor Robin Williams to suicide, we were stunned -- and deeply saddened. How could a man who projected so much joy and mirth be so wracked by the devastating mental illness of depression?

    The disease is tricky that way. And when it wins, it leaves behind spouses and children who desperately wish they could have rescued the victim.

    Men have a particularly hard time dealing with depression because of the perceived stigma in admitting they're suffering from a condition that may be stronger than they are. Many self-medicate with drugs or alcohol. For the women who love these men, there are no easy answers.

    So what do you do if your husband is dangerously depressed but can't -- or won't -- get the help he needs?

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    There are few relationships more fraught with drama than the ones with our in-laws. Even those who would claim to love their mothers-in-law (and we all hate you -- ha!) have had issues from time to time, right?

    I mean, it makes perfect sense. You marry the man, not his mother. And even so, she creeps into everything he does and defends even his most boneheaded moves. It's bound to be a hard relationship. And who can blame her for loving her baby boy, anyway? Those of us who have sons can attest to just how strong that bond truly is.

    Still, there are ways to ease the pain and make things just a little bit simpler for everyone (including yourself!). We asked experts for some tips and came up with five ways to improve your relationship with your in-laws.

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    What makes a marriage last? The answer to that question is different for everyone, and every marriage is individual. That said, there are lessons to be gleaned from other marriages and things we can incorporate into our own to fortify and strengthen them. But what are they?

    Whether it's regular hot sex for decades or something more subtle and intangible, the people we know who have been married for 10, 20, 30+ years all have their own reasons their relationships have endured while so many others have failed. A few weeks ago, we heard from 10 women on what a "good marriage" is.

    This time, eight men get their say about what makes a marriage stand the test of time. And what they have to say might surprise you!

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    Does the idea of stealing a few romantic moments with your husband while vacationing with the kids seem as unlikely as not hearing the dreaded "Are we there yet?" when embarking on an eight-hour road trip

    But making sure you and your spouse have a little downtime can be the key to a truly relaxing and enjoyable getaway. Licensed professional counselor Terri DiMatteo of the award-winning Open Door Therapy agrees. 

    "Child-centered family vacations can result in parents returning home tired, fatigued, and resentful -- in need of a separate vacation just for them," says DiMatteo. "It’s all too easy for parents to overlook their own needs when planning a 'family vacation.'"

    If the closest you'll get to achieving intimacy on a family vacation this summer is holding hands while waiting in line for the log flume ride, don't despair. We've got some suggestions for making the magic happen, even with the whole brood on board.

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    Ask any married couple and you will hear the same thing: Being married is not easy. Loving someone and having them be your best friend is wonderful, but the daily slog and the tit for tat fights and the little squabbles add up. Sometimes the person you love most in the world becomes the person whose eyes you dream of scratching out in a fit of rage. Those are the bad moments.

    Of course, there are also lovely moments. Moments when you can't imagine being with anyone else and the sun rises and sets with your spouse. But how can you tell when the bad moments are starting to outnumber the good? How can you tell when your marriage has gone from normal, everyday difficulty to "we're in trouble" town?

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    The Duggars must be feeling nostalgic -- they celebrated their 30th wedding anniversary this week! And to commemorate the special day, their kids posted the Duggars' 1984 wedding photos on Instagram. "Happy 30th anniversary to the most amazing parents ever!" they wrote. "More in love today than ever! And such a great example for all of us kids!" Daww, that's so sweet. I think Michelle and Jim Bob definitely still have a youthful twinkle in their eyes, even though Jim Bob just celebrated his 49th birthday. How can their kids not be inspired?

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    How often are you and your husband having sex? It's a personal question not many people have the courage to ask (or answer!), but it's something most of us wonder, especially when we get curious about how our own sex lives stack up against those of other married couples.

    Well now we can stop wondering. Thanks to a highly amusing Reddit thread, we are privy to how much sex married people are really having -- and there are some surprises.

    In fact, just how often spouses are sleeping together might throw you for a loop. Even people married decades and well into their 50s are apparently getting it on as many times as people half their age who have no kids. Impressive, right? For instance, one man who's been married for 15 years says he and his wife are engaging in intercourse five to seven times a week! Really?!

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    If you're feeling like your marriage is in a rut, here's one option for shaking things up: Try it 1950s-style. 

    Mandy and Gary Jones say living a 1950s lifestyle saved their marriage. They dress in vintage clothes, decorate their house with kitschy mid-century antiques, drive a 1949 Chevrolet, listen to rockabilly records on a jukebox, and yes, have even reverted to 1950s-style gender roles. "It may seem strange and we get the odd nasty comment," Mandy Jones says, "but this way of life works for us and has saved our marriage."

    In fact, the Joneses think we should all "take advice from our grandparents" and live the '50s way. "1950s marriages definitely work better than marriages these days," Mandy says. She'll have to forgive my skepticism, but that's not what my divorced-in-the-1950s grandmother says. But let's give these two the benefit of the doubt, because they really do seem happy. What is it about their marriage that's working, and what can we learn from it?

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