Updated: Apr 27
Whether you're a newlywed, have been married for over 50 years, or land anywhere in between, there are always various ways that one can improve their marriage and become a better spouse.
I have been married for over 10 years, and my husband and I now have 6 children. There are many books that have helped me in my journey of becoming the best wife I can possibly be.
These are a few of my favorites:
1) THE FIVE LOVE LANGUAGES
This is personally my favorite among these three books. This book explains that there are five love languages (words of affirmation, physical affection, quality time, receiving gifts, and acts of service) and that certain ways of showing love can more effectively fill up a spouses "love tank". If you are not speaking the right "love language" then you will not be filling up your spouses "love tank" with the right kind of "fuel", and it will remain empty (and they will remain feeling unloved). I read this early on in my marriage and it opened my eyes to the fact that we can believe that we are a "great" spouse, doing our best to show our love and appreciation. However, all the while our spouse feels unloved, hurt, and unappreciated. This book provides many examples of how these types of miscommunications can occur, why, and how to solve this!
2) THE TEMPERAMENT GOD GAVE YOUR SPOUSE
Another one of my favorites (from the Series of The Temperament God Gave You/Your Spouse/Your Children) this book gives great insight into the four different temperaments (Sanguine. Melancholic, Choleric, Phlegmatic). Understanding the fact that we all have physical predispositions to act and tend toward certain virtues and vices can really aid one to not take certain things as personally, to have more patience with certain things that can be a source of conflict, while also guiding one to support and encourage your spouse in a way that is more effective and impactful.
3) LOVE AND RESPECT
This book really helped me to understand the importance of respecting my husband. This was an area that I personally struggled to understand and value properly, as I grew up in a home with an absent father. I never learned what it was to have a man I could respect, look up to, depend on, and admire. I won't go into the details but that impact from my childhood and young adulthood stayed with me. This book opened my eyes to the importance of showing my husband love through respect, submission, appreciation and admiration.
In summary, what these 3 books share in common is the fact that they remind us that we all have different personalities, tendencies, habits and needs for feeling loved and respected. Many times, it is simply lapses in communication that lead couples apart, initially, and which then later develop into bigger problems. United by a love for God, our Catholic faith and good intentions, couples can grow closer together by simply trying to learn how to better communicate, understand, support, and show love/respect to one another.
Let me know down in the comments if you have any other book suggestions!
If you know a couple that is really struggling and needs additional help and support for their marriage, I highly recommend attending a Retrouvaille Marriage Retreat.
This is their website:
They have a very effect way of getting couples communicating again, healing from past hurts, and there is a large community of catholic couples that can serve as a support system. After the retreat, there are several weekly follow up sessions that helps couples dive deeper into the topics that were addressed at the retreat. Many cities also have monthly meetings.
For more information watch the video 🎥