Marriage is tough. I would venture that to say that it’s easier to get married than stay married. My husband and I celebrated our 10 year anniversary in 2015.
If I were having marital problems, seeking marriage advice, and didn’t have it in my budget to seek a paid professional, these are the resources I would tap into, in this order.
The most important source of free marriage advice is God. Pray to God to ask for guidance. While your initial request may be for God to change your husband, you will likely get advice on how you can change your behavior and/or perception of your marriage. Are your expectations reasonable? How could your attitude change? How could you see this from your husband’s perspective?
2. The Bible
If you want to know the basics about what God says about marriage, check Ephesians, Matthew, Mark, Genesis, 1 Corinthians. Each of these books of the Bible (and many more) share invaluable wisdom on how wives should interact with husbands, how husbands should interact with wives, a husband’s proper perspective of his wife, divorce, God’s design for marriage, and married life.
3. Your Pastor
Part of a pastor’s job is to support his congregation. Your pastor likely has the training, life experience, and biblical knowledge to counsel you on what the Bible says about marriage. I value the wisdom, prayer, and teachings my pastor provides. Not only can he tell me what the Bible says, but he lives it out in his own life.
4. Your Parents
Whether your parents have been married or not or are divorced, there is likely something you can learn from them – what to do or what not to do. What did marriage look like in your family? Was it good? Was it bad? Was there no example? What do you admire about your parents’ relationship? What do you plan to differently in your marriage?
5. Other Couples
Surround yourself with couples that provide a positive, encouraging example of marriage. Learn from other couples
who have been happily married (overall) for a long time and be encouraged by them. You could take the Bible’s teachings a step further by participating in a Bible study focusing on marriage with these types of couples.
There are so many books available featuring marriage advice. Whether there is a particular area your marriage is struggling in or you need general guidance, there is likely a book for you. I listened to Dr. Laura’s audio book “The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands” <afiliate link> and learned many things I could do differently. It changed my perspective drastically. I put books near the end of the list because they are written from a generally applicable perspective.
7. Relationship Experts
If you’re going through a rough patch in your marriage, you can make it a regular practice to listen to relationship experts like Dr. Phil on TV, Dr. Laura on Talk Radio, or read Dr. Wendy Walsh’s advice on her blog. What each of these individuals seem to have in common is a doctoral degree, large public platform, and being married for a long time. I put this at the end of the list because it is the most impersonal – focusing on others’ relationships. However, you can still learn a lot from them.
There is something empowering about being proactive in protecting, saving, and strengthening your marriage.
Don’t miss this free marriage advice:
- Marriage Advice: How to Make Date Night Happen
- A Wedding Anniversary: The Meaning, The Wedding, & Gifts
- Date Nights: How To Keep the Romance Alive
- The Best, Surprisingly Simple Marriage Advice