My husband was on a boat one time that changed homeports in order to go into the shipyard. For those non military, the shipyard is pretty easy to figure out – the submarine is pulled out of the water and everything is replaced, fixed, cleaned, etc and the guys, while still working crazy schedules, don’t actually go out to sea. We wives were trying to get our FRG together to plan evening outings but we kept getting the same response from people who didn’t want to go: “but my husband is home.” Now, it isn’t like they had been gone a whole lot before we changed homeports for the first thing. Secondly, they were going to be home every night for the next few years. For me, this was not a legitimate excuse. A night out with the girls away from the guys can be extremely good for a marriage.
They say absence makes the heart grow fonder and it is very true. It can be difficult during deployments or long distance relationships (trust me I’ve done both) but when you see your spouse again after a while, there is no feeling like it. My husband and I were fighting pretty badly during one point when we were doing long distance, but as soon as we saw each other, it was like a lot of that melted away. And even just one night apart can do something similar.
I do not understand couples who feel they have to do absolutely everything together all the time. I feel it is important that each person have a sense of self outside of the relationship. Your relationship should be a part of who you are and not the other way around. One night out for drinks or dancing with the girls can be such a little boost to a relationship. Give yourself the opportunity to miss each other. Even just for a few hours. It reminds you of why you want to be around each other in the first place.
My husband and I have different interests in several things. He, for example, loves woodworking and building things. There have been many afternoons when he has been in the garage measuring, cutting, hammering, etc and I have been in the living room reading comics or watching one of the many TV shows I love that he doesn’t like. As long as you respect what the other person likes, having separate interests can be a good thing. Occasionally when he isn’t feeling like talking he will let me babble about the differences between the MCU and the comics, or what I think about the next Doctor Who companion, and he will just sit quietly and nod along. And I love listening to him explain exactly how he is adding drawers to the night stand he is working on and how there was a problem with one saw and he had to do something by hand. I don’t remember. It is something that I would never choose to do but I love that it makes him happy. And he loves to explain it to me, so while I may not understand all of it, I want to listen to him. Because it isn’t something we do together, it gives us the chance to teach other. And the chance to come back together in the evening and say “hey, I missed you.”
So take that time apart. Go to the movies with friends or go to an evening FRG event that is spouses only. Have a great time then go home and tell him all about it. Hold hands while you tell him about how Laura got so angry at Lucille she told her off, or how Diane was wearing those stupid ugly shoes with the bows again. Whatever it may be, just enjoy being able to talk about something he wasn’t involved in. If you spend all day together every day, there may come a point when you find smithing new to say. So take those little breaks and see what fun it can inject into your marriage!
My husband and my relationship are both very important to me and a huge part of who I am, but I refuse to let it be the only thing. There are so many components to my corner of the sky.