The Secret to a Happy Marriage

Chad and I stared at each other in silence from across the table at a ski area cafe.  At the other end of the table, our 7 year-old daughter has her head down – a bottle of neon yellow Gatorade in front of her.  A queasy tummy has quickly turned into a full blown stomach bug, and our dream of a half day of kid-free skiing is no longer in the cards.

As we start packing up to head back down the mountain, a local mom preparing her kids for ski school gives us an apologetic look. “Well, at least you are still smiling” she says.  Chad and I look at each other and agree: “What else can we do?”.  At that moment I realized how far we truly have come as a couple.

Thirteen years ago, when we were newlyweds, this scenario would have gone much differently.  Most likely, Chad would have decided he wanted to go skiing anyway and would have left us back at the cafe to fend for ourselves…  or he would have reluctantly agreed that we should go back to the hotel, fuming that his expectations for a fun ski day were not met.

But today, I looked to Chad for guidance and he made the right call.

Not because it was what he wanted to do, but because he knew it was what was best for our family.

We scooped up our kids and headed back down the mountain to rest for the day. We will try again fresh in the morning.

Now, I want to give credit where it is due.  My husband has grown into about the closest thing to a perfect husband and father I could have ever hoped for. However, it was small incremental changes to how I treated him as a wife that helped him get there. It all started with treating Chad with respect.

By not criticizing my husband (or jumping in to take charge myself) I have allowed Chad to grow into his role as the leader of our family.

Changing how I approached my marriage was not an easy – or pretty – process.  I blindly stumbled my way through. There really wasn’t a guide for me to follow of what a modern wife should look like – until now.

A Wife’s Secret to Happiness

In A Wife’s Secret to Happiness, Jen Weaver describes eleven blessings we can see in our marriage by shifting our own thoughts and behaviors as wives – our “wifestyle”.

“Every choice contributes to our “wifestyle” – the pattern we establish for ourselves as married women. If we don’t live with intention, our lifestyle can become … unbecoming … as we develop unhealthy perspectives, attitudes, and habits in interactions with our husbands.”
– Jen Weaver

Jen is passionate about marriage, but not because she is perfect or has it all figured out.  Her book is full of personal stories about her own struggles trying to be a good wife:

“So much of this book is me. Not just what I think or what I’ve read. Not even just what I believe about God’s promises to bless our lives and ways He wants to bless our marriages. Me. The things I’ve lived through and tons of mistakes I’ve made. I’ve watched my fingers typing away while thinking to myself “I can’t believe I’m putting that in here” more times than I like to think about.” – Jen Weaver

If you are a strong independent woman who has a tough time trusting others to take the wheel, including your husband, you should check out Jen’s book and website. Oh, and did I mention there is a awesome quiz? Jen has a great way of making even the most hot button topics approachable and fun.

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