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10 Tips for a Marriage That Doesn't Suck

By julieminer |

Photo Source: Ambro

A few weeks ago I asked my brilliant readers the following question: What is the best piece of advice you ever got on how to have a happy, healthy marriage (or partnership or relationship)? In response, I got over 500 comments which I then collected, sorted and analyzed. I even made charts.

Below, you’ll find the top ten pieces of advice on how to improve your relationship. But there are a couple of caveats I should mention, as none of this really works without them in mind. Here they are:

  • None of this advice applies to a relationship that is unsafe or unhealthy.
  • This is advice for when both partners want to make the relationship work.
  • There has to be trust and it has to be there for both people.
  • This is advice given primarily by women, for women.
  • There isn’t one solution that’s going to work for everyone. If there were, and I had just figured it out, I would be reading this post while on the Today Show, getting drunk off boxed wine with Kathie Lee and Hoda while Dr. Phil, forlorn and defeated, was forced to sell his mustache.

So here are the top ten tips! If you want to read more, we have a ginormous report of all the results at Rants from Mommyland.

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10 Tips for a Healthy, Happy Marriage

A Very Scientific Chart About Marital Happiness

This bar chart shows the top ten groupings of advice and tips that readers mentioned. These include the nearly 500 comments I received, aggregated into such highly professional categories as “Sexytime is Good for You” and “Don’t be a Dick”.

All photos are sourced. All captions are done by me.

Read more from Julie at her blog Rants from MommyLand. Follow Julie on Facebook and Twitter for additional goofy nonsense at no extra charge. You can catch up on her posts for Strollerderby, too – where she is often slightly less stupid.


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About julieminer



Julie W. Miner writes the blog Rants from Mommyland. She has three kids, a long-suffering husband, a very naughty dog and a geriatric, ill-tempered cat. In addition to blogging, she teaches at a college she couldn’t have gotten into because she made bad choices in high school. Read bio and latest posts → Read Julie's latest posts →

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7 thoughts on “10 Tips for a Marriage That Doesn't Suck

  1. Meagan says:

    I agree with every one of these. I would add to the “alone time” point, for any dads reading, make sure Mom takes the time. Most dads seem to be better at taking the time they need for themselves than moms. For moms I think “self” time can be a lot like sex, you don’t feel like it, you’re too tired, you’d rather get caught up on dishes than go out with friends. But as with sex, when you go ahead and do it, in spite of not being in the mood, you are SO happy you did.

  2. Janie Schuesler says:

    Love that you changed the title of the venting one….at least my sleep deprived brain thinks you did and I’m to lazy to double check:-) but I remember the last chart I didn’t know what that line was and when I read the full description I was like wozzer. The other things I kinda knew and they are good reminders but I always classified my venting under good healthy communication. If I say negative things about him this is how my friends will view him because they sure aren’t getting his side of the story. I do mention all the good things about him a lot, but have learned to not say some things. I have one friend that won’t let me babysit her kids over something I mentioned about my hubbies past from 20 years ago. He is not that person anymore. I also took this a little further to my venting with him which I thought fine…. Yet now looking back …hmmmmm so many vent sessions ended with him getting defensive and us fighting. Needless to say this was an eye opening part of your article. Thanks….love you guys. I am currently getting my MOMS club hooked on you all.

  3. nicole says:

    Great job! I like the condensed version too lol :-)

  4. My Little Otter says:

    Dead serious– I was GIDDY in the waiting room of the GYN last week. Why? Because I was there, alone. Who cares if it was for a pap?

    And, I agree very much about not being a dick. I see too many women acting like total jerks to their husbands. It is embarrassing to watch.

  5. Marcy at Bella Noise says:

    You are right on, Meagan! Agreed.

  6. Suburban Snapshots says:

    These are so good and so honest. I’d add, (with the abusive etc. caveat) don’t assume anything in marriage is a dealbreaker. You won’t know how you’ll respond or he’ll react, or what your circumstances will be until you get to that particular struggle.

  7. David says:

    How can I send this article by email? I do not use facebook or twitter.

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