POSTS WITH TAG: marriage

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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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    A Reddit user's post has gone viral this week after she revealed the Excel spreadsheet her husband sent her when she left for a business trip. In it, he details the entire month of June into July and the myriad excuses she gave him for not wanting sex. Assuming this is real and not some Internet hoax, it's pretty shocking. And it's also hilariously astute.

    She used the typical reasons for turning down sex -- I'm tired, I have to be up early, etc. But she also had some inventive ones -- I'm still sore from last night's sex (REALLY?!), I feel "gross," and I'm watching TV (a Friends rerun).

    People are divided over whether the husband's spreadsheet documenting her sex excuses is manipulative and crass and whether the wife is ruining her marriage with her frequent denial of sex. Any married person will tell you: We don't OWE our spouses sex, but we also kind of DO. Sorry. It's the truth. And it's not just me saying that. Experts agree.

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    Want to have the ULTIMATE honeymoon? It's only the most important vacation you'll ever take in your life. Oh man, the pressure! If you think people make too much out of this little post-wedding trip, you're not alone. 19 Kids and Counting's Michelle Duggar thought so, too. In a recent blog post, Mrs. Duggar shares the story of her budget honeymoon with Jim Bob, and it's so far from the idea your jaw will drop -- and yet it sounds perfect.

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    Anyone who has ever had a baby has probably been there: Standing in front of a mirror, breasts swollen and heavy, body still stretched from childbirth and pregnancy, exhausted from newborn night confusion, and wondering how on EARTH you will ever find the energy, desire, or confidence to be with your partner again in any sexual way

    Take it from me who has been there three times: It comes back. But it takes a while. Still, the truth is the faster you get back on track to intimacy, the better things will be for everyone in the family (including mommy!). "Sexuality and, more importantly, intimacy are extremely important in a marriage. Sexless or low sex marriages are very fragile," says Dr. Lauren Napolitano, a psychologist and author of Over-Scheduled & Under-Sexed: How Busyness Is Destroying Your Marriage (2015).

    Indeed. But how does one get back on track when they feel ANYTHING but sexy?

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    Here at The Stir, we go through a lot of stock photos, looking for just the right pictures to go with our posts. And we have to tell you -- there are a lot of wacky couples photos out there.

    Some of them are too silly to use for a serious post. Some of them make us wonder what the heck the photographer was thinking. What the heck are these couples supposed to be doing, exactly?!? We gathered a few of our favorites and made our best guesses.

    More From The Stir10 Strange & Unrealistic Stock Photos of Pregnant Women

    We'll say this much -- at least the couples in these photos make your relationship look normal. (We think?)


    Image © JuliaMilberger/iStock

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    It's the little things. We all start out with the best intentions to see only the good in our spouses. It's easy in the beginning, what with all those pink, fluffy love hormones clouding our vision. But over time they creep into our consciousness -- those annoying little habits of our beloved. Why is he incapable of putting his dirty laundry INSIDE the bin instead of on top of it? Why does he insist on loading glasses on the bottom rack of the dishwasher, which is clearly designed for plates? Why does he have to finish the last three words of every sentence you ever say? (YOU. EVER. SAY.) 

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    It happens in a lot of long-term relationships: You or your spouse lets himself go. Maybe you put on a lot of weight after the baby and it seems too hopeless to get back into shape. Maybe he's overwhelmed with work and health issues and has just given up. What do you do? You want the two of you to be your best selves, to enjoy good health and remain vital and ... okay, almost as fun and sexy as you were when you first met. But you know what's going to happen if you bring it up: You're going to put your spouse on the defensive, and it's going to backfire.

    We asked relationship expert and author Dr. Logan Levkoff for advice on the best way to approach this issue constructively and lovingly.

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