4 Lessons You Learn In Young Marriage

Getting married young was definitely a rollercoaster!  We are only 22 and 23 so let’s face it we are still young, BUT we have come a long way since we got married at 19 almost 3 years ago! In those 3 years we have moved to a new state, got a dog, spent more time apart in our first year of marriage than we did together, and lived the military life for a while. When we moved back home we realized just how much everything we went through shaped us and the marriage dynamic we have. 

Everyone says your first year of marriage is the hardest and I think that’s true because that is when you do A LOT of growing and changing. With that being said I am going to talk about 4 lessons you learn when you get married young. 

  1. Communication is VERY important 

Communication is one of the most important things in young marriage and just marriage in general. You have to learn the best way to communicate with your spouse. This makes talking about big life decisions A LOT easier when you are on the same page. It is also important to communicate with your spouse about things that are bothering you, and helps you have more productive discussions about the hard things. 

  1. Don’t Compare Your Marriage to Someone Elses

In the age of social media it is SO easy to compare your situation to someone else’s.. We are all guilty about comparing ourselves to other people, but on social media you only see a glimpse into someone’s life. Almost everyday you see someone getting engaged, getting married, going on trips and it can be so easy to get discouraged and caught up in what you don’t have. The truth is my husband and I argue and disagree about a lot of things, but that is HEALTHY to do in a relationship. You have to learn what dynamic works best for you and your relationship. We are all individual people and God gave us our own unique personalities for a reason. EVERY marriage is different, and figuring it out is just part of the process.

  1. Learn Your Spouse’s Love Language

In our premarital counseling we received an audiobook about the 5 love languages and I think that was one of MOST helpful things that I learned especially in our first year of marriage. My husband’s love language is physical touch, and acts of service and my love language is quality time and words of affirmation. It took us a while to figure that out and it was a big transition. Your wants and needs will change over time, but I think it is really important to let your spouse know you appreciate them. Different people express their love and appreciation in different ways. In your marriage, you get to understand your partner’s dynamic on a deeper level and I think it only brings you closer together.

  1. If You Want Something to Change You Have to Change Too

This is the MOST important lesson I learned especially in our first year of marriage, and I still have to sit back and reevaluate my actions sometimes.  I spent a lot of my time not knowing how to effectively communicate my needs in the beginning of our marriage, especially when I would want/need help with things. I found that when I would ask my husband to help me out with certain things, they would change for a little while and then go back to the way they were before. This would often leave me frustrated and upset because I felt like he wasn’t listening to me or helping me in the way that I needed. One day, I said to myself maybe this is a “ME” problem. So, I changed my approach of how I asked him to do things and asked him what is the best way to communicate my wants and needs to him….. let me tell you this CHANGED our marriage dynamic so much. Learning how to look at what you need to change in yourself to help see the change in your spouse is so important BECAUSE if we don’t address it we can find ourselves building up with resentment and anger. 

Now this isn’t an overnight change, but more like “sprinkling salt” to make things better a little at a time and building up to be where you want to be in your marriage and your communication with your spouse. 

These are just a few things I have learned and I am still learning in my young marriage, but I feel like they can be helpful to you even if you are currently married, looking to get married, or are in a young marriage. Let me know in the comments some of the lessons you have learned in your marriage or how long you have been married to your spouse! 

Until next time…..

Riley Jo XOXO

Building a House at 22

When I was younger, I never would have imagined that I would be happily married at 19, have a great job, and building a HOME! It was definitely not an easy road to get here. You can read a little about that story on my getting married at 19 in my blog post linked here. But for now I will give you a little back story of how we are able to build our house at 22 and why we decided to build instead of buy.

My husband and I moved back home to Indiana after he got out of the Marine Corps. We waited to buy a house until we came back because we wanted to be able to look at houses in person, and the uncertainty of the military… plans change A LOT! So because of this my parents offered to let us stay with them during this big transition. 

When we came back to Indiana we sat down with a realtor and started looking at houses right away. We weren’t afraid of a fixer upper since our budget was pretty small. We knew a brand new, move-in ready house wasn’t in the cards for us…. (or so we thought). After struggling to find a  house in our budget and area, we decided to live with my parents for a little while longer to save up some money because honestly  that was one of the things that we REALLY  weren’t prepared for. 

We did not have NEARLY enough money saved up to buy a house, so we had to re-evaluate. I also talk about this in my transitioning out of the military blog. It can give you some helpful tips if you’re transitioning out of the military and in the same situation. However, We decided to live with my parents a little bit longer and get our finances in order. We adopted the Dave Ramsey budget plan and really cracked down on our monthly income to put all of our extra money towards a house and build up our savings. 

After looking at what seemed like tons of houses and months of saving, none of the houses we looked at felt like “home” to us. I was praying that we would find the right house at the right time, and our prayers were answered. 

One night driving to dinner at my in-laws we saw a sign for a home builder in our area. I decided to take a gamble and message them as a last resort. We didn’t get our hopes up because we figured it would be out of our budget….but there’s no harm in asking! At this point we had a little more money saved up and were hoping for a miracle, and then this happened…..

The builder agreed to meet with us and discuss options within our budget! He believed he could do it, but it still seemed way  too good to be true! When we finally met with him, and went over what we could do within the budget we had, everything just kind of fell into place! We picked out our floor plan, and when we stepped into the model house it truly felt like “home” to us.

It was definitely a big leap of faith, but we are so glad that we did it, even though it means living with my parents longer than we hoped. We are still working hard and saving as much as we can while it is being built.  I want to keep updating on the building process and share all of the details about future decor, and eventually our new house tour!  We know now more than ever about how much it takes to buy or build a home. I hope to share this journey to home ownership with all of you! Stay tuned for updates of our home build 🙂

I know everyone’s situation is going to be different at this season of life, but if you are wanting to set big goals for yourself like buy a house no matter what age or season of life you are in it takes a lot of hard work to get there! Save as much as you can and educate yourself and improve your financial situation. We adopted the Dave Ramsey snowball method to get out of debt and save for our future. However, there are also financial advisors you can speak with and tons of resources online to help you get on track with goals you want to set 🙂 Comment down below what kind of home updates, or blogs you would like to see in the future!

Riley Jo XOXO