Relation

Friendships After Marriage

Couples often face tensions regarding friendships outside of the relationship. Conflicts can arise when one person feels the need to be gregarious and involved with others, but the other person wants alone time and withdraws from social events. Understanding and accepting each other’s differences is key to fostering friendships in relationships and building friendships with others.

Friendships make us stronger, less lonely, and more versatile. Encouraging and supportive friends understand that your best friend is and should be your spouse, but no matter how close you are with your spouse or children, we often find ourselves with other people. I want a kinship with someone. Here are some tips for maintaining friendships outside of romantic relationships.

Balance

Maintaining good friendships takes time and effort. As life progresses, that precious time has to be shared with an ever-growing group of people, leaving less time for friends.

Friends usually tell us what we want to hear, support our choices, and make us feel good by easily forgiving our shortcomings.

No wonder we run to them or call them for advice in the midst of a crisis or situation. Marriage experts say that turning your eyes on your friends or turning your back on your spouse creates emotional distance in your relationship. Make sure you rely on your spouse too.

Friendship brings unique qualities that positively affect our self-esteem. However, it is important to strike a balance so as not to compromise in the relationship. Plan a meeting with your spouse or children.

If you need to speak to a friend in person, plan ahead. You don’t have free time like you used to. While some friends will understand why you don’t attend as often, others may not understand that you are preoccupied with your new life.

Priorities

As you mature, your priorities change. Big life events like weddings and the birth of a baby give us a different perspective on life, making us rethink what’s important and how we want to spend our time. Avoid people who create negative feelings towards your relationship or spouse and cause a rift in the relationship.

Neutralize friendships that can be detrimental to your relationship, such as control freaks, gossipers, and users. Involving single friends on family outings will help them better understand the responsibilities that come with being a couple and a family.

In time, some of your friends will understand why you prefer a quiet dinner to a night at the bar, but others will have a hard time adjusting to your new life.

How to Maintain Friendships

Attempting to nurture a relationship can seem like a juggling act of fostering friendships, weeding out bad ones, and nurturing new ones. Friendships, like any relationship, require effort. This is especially true after marriage or childbirth, when priorities and free time change.

You may not have the luxury of calling a friend to suggest an impromptu lunch, but that’s okay. On the other hand, you may find that you don’t have much in common with the old friends you shot single scenes with.

With a little coordination and communication, you can nurture cherished friendships into their golden years. It is important for both husband and wife to develop other friendships. Below are some suggestions.

Set Boundaries

Whether it’s a close friend or a family member, boundaries set boundaries and expectations for your commitment to friendship. Tell your friends that you value friendships and that you care. Explain that you care about them even if you don’t get to spend much time together.

Accept that your friend’s life is changing and will change as well. Therefore, taking action to maintain these friendships can increase expectations in the future when their life circumstances change.

Finally, don’t use your friends to complain about your spouse. As a rule of thumb, don’t say anything to your boyfriend that you wouldn’t say to your spouse directly.

Make Time

You have common interests with your friends, and you must keep them a priority. Talk to your spouse about when you want to spend time with friends and agree on a plan.

She may not be able to eat lunch twice a week or spend Fridays and Saturdays with her, but try to call and meet regularly. At first, both of you may feel a little uncomfortable with this scheduled time, but since you’re busy, you’ll need to get a little “calendar-crazy” to make time for the important things.

Give and Take

When you get together with friends, resist the urge to dominate the conversation with stories about your spouse’s romance or recent baby drama, especially if they’re not in the same stage of life. Your friend wants to hear what’s going on, but he also wants to talk to you about his life. And you need to get the sense that you still share the interests and experiences that brought you together in the first place. Reconnecting with old friends can be difficult when priorities change.

Make New Friends

If you’ve tried to make an appointment with one or two of her friends but they seem agitated and aloof, it’s okay to drop the friendship. Not all friendships last forever. As life progresses, we naturally make new friends and break up with old ones.

Consider finding a new couple to spend time with, or a new mom or dad who can relate to your situation. Attending a marriage enhancement or parenting course is a great way to meet other couples (and learn more about them). Whether it’s organized by a religious group or a local community organization, you’re sure to meet other like-minded couples in a setting that encourages solidarity. Making friends as a couple is great.

Marriage and having children does not mean the end of a friendship. You change, and it takes effort on your part (and your friends’) to maintain good friendships. The important thing is to realize that friendships, old or new, are important to all of us.