3 Marriage Essentials

The day I wore white and walked the aisle to make the most important promise of my life, there were many unknowns. How many children would fill our home? Where would the Air Force send us? What track would our careers travel?

Seventeen years have passed since that promise. The challenges of parenting, moving, and careers can test the bonds of even the most faithful marriage. No couple can leave unguarded their

~time~
~intimacy~
~trust~

These challenges in themselves are truly nothing different than they were for countless generations before me. What has changed dramatically in the years since we said our vows is the pervasive nature of technology. Your laptop is inanimate, your cell phone has no opinion and your television will sit dormant on its own. Yet, in a given day, these services and devices may be the main form of attack on your marriage.

Do you think the creators of Facebook, Twitter, or iPads are concerned if your marriage is strengthened?

I doubt it, which is why we must decide how to incorporate these into our lives.

Time-We are both involved in our kids’ activities, regularly eat meals together and have been known to work in at least one lunch date per week. Decide together what areas are non-negotiable for your family. Determined to eat meals together? Make sure your computer switch is in the off position for both the meal time and the time it takes to prepare it.

Intimacy -I doubt that I really have to mention what is readily available on the internet as temptation for both men and women. I recommend finding support and help if this is an issue for either or both members of any couple. Do not fall into the trap of thinking that there is a level including this in your marriage that is healthy. We must also avoid thinking this is the only area affecting intimacy in our marriage. Is the time you spend using technology making you more familiar and close to your spouse? Military wives like me are eternally grateful for the ability to email and video chat when our husbands are sent away. Our deployed spouse can keep current on the details of family life at home, keeping him more connected. When we are all home, like many typical families, we can send quick texts or emails to each other to let our spouse know we cannot wait to see them at the end of the day.

Trust -I know couples who have just one Facebook account or one email account. This is not always a sign that trust has been broken, but may be that it is being protected. Trust is built and protected with transparency. If you choose to have separate email accounts like we have, you may choose to share passwords with each other. Knowing that you can read each other’s messages at any time is a simple safety net. Keeping commitments, like having dinner together, also builds trust.

Ultimately, technology is just another aspect of modern living that we must recognize as having the ability to weaken our relationships. Instead, I pray that it will help improve them.

How do you keep your marriage strong in the face of technology?