by Dr. Laurén A. Doamekpor
I still consider myself a newlywed. It’s been a year and a half of marital bliss (for the most part) and counting. And in our super busy lives, I’m learning that it takes work to not only make a marriage work, but it also takes an incredibly amount of work to protect it from outside forces. These outside forces could be anything and everything: Jealous friends, meddling family members, work obligations.
What I’ve discovered over the past few months is that our kryptonite seems to be inconsideration. And this inconsideration seems to be coming from OTHER COUPLES. One couple in particular, seem to only call when they need something and are so inconsiderate of our time that it makes me want to scream. I should stop at this point and say that I am a type A personality and very time conscious. I hate to be late and I hate it when others are late. The way I see it, if I respect your time, you should respect mine. But not this particular couple though. They are constantly late when we meet up (no call/text/pigeon-gram – nothing) and make no apologies. E.V.E.R. You might be asking why we are still friends with this couple. Well, the answer is: they are good people, and once you get past the inconsideration and selfishness, we enjoy their company. But we are also learning that we need to protect our time from them and others who encroach a little too much.
So after a heart-to-heart with my significant other, we came up with a few guidelines for how to protect our boo-time, continue to date each other and maintain the relationships and friendships with others that we hold dear.
1. We don’t cancel or reschedule OUR plans for others. Even if Oprah herself offers us tickets to the world cup in Brazil, OUR plans come first.
2. We plan in advance as much as possible. This helps us make time for ourselves, together, individually, and make time for our friends and family. We also make sure we check in with each other when we make plans with others.
3. If we’re not feeling it, we’re not feeling it. Even if our social calendar is pathetically empty, if we feel like staying home and watching a movie, we go with it.
4. We listen to each other. If I’m feeling neglected, I’m not afraid to tell hubby. This allows us to reevaluate the amount of time we are dedicating to each other.
5. We stay on budget. (Duh!) Because marriage is a triathlon, not a sprint and making time for each other doesn’t need to put us in debt.
Hey Frugalistas: What are you doing to protect time with your significant other?