Balance between give and take is often easy in the beginning of marriages. As are most things, in the beginning. It made us happy to go out of our way to make sure that our spouse had everything they desired, but as we grow through the years we get comfortable and can often take advantage of the giving of our spouses. When certain things become routine, like cooking and cleaning, they become expected and thus overlooked as giving. Now, food and clean homes are necessities and someone needs to do it, just don’t get in a rut and expect the other one in your relationship to continue doing those things if something isn’t given in return. I don’t mean, “Gee honey, that meal was great, thanks.” I’m talking about reciprocating in some way that is giving the other person something specific that they need too. Give and take can get a lot more complicated than chore duties of course.
Are we aware of our spouse’s changing interests as we get older? Are we participating in new and exciting activities that the other is starting to see as a necessity in their life? It’s important to continue growing together and giving support, time, praise, compliments and affection just as we did when we were dating. Just because we’ve got ‘em now, doesn’t mean we don’t have to continue working everyday to keep ‘em. People change, needs change, and if we aren’t moving forward together and giving and taking equally, then we’re moving apart. Being fully aware of what the other person really needs is key. It may require going out of your way, but if we did it in the beginning, can’t we still do it now? Like the ABBA song says, “every smile and every little touch don’t you know that they mean so much…every feeling you’re showing is a boomerang you’re throwing…bang a boomerang is love.”
by Stephanie Melanson