Stay Newlywed Logo
Table of Contents

Couple holding hands in front of a sunset

Do you know a marriage that ultimately turned into two roommates with separate lives? I hate seeing that. A couple that used to be so in love and then just one day felt like they had nothing in common.

I can’t know the situation for every marriage this happens to, but a very common reason is that they forget to pursue each other when life gets busy. And I don’t need to tell you how busy or complicated life can get! You might be balancing a job, kids, caring for a relative, social schedules…how are we supposed to be unified when so much has the opportunity to pull us into different directions?

What is pursuing oneness?

We believe that oneness is a foundational mindset of a successful marriage.

Oneness in marriage is when two people unite in love but continue to pursue commitment and partnership throughout their marriage. It’s an active choice to be in sync with each other through a single vision and working together to create a life that is centered on your mutual love and respect.

Oneness in marriage isn’t just about those love feelings or physical intimacy, but is also about emotional intimacy and connection. You can pursue oneness with your spouse through your partnership.

Why partnership is important in a marriage

Partnership helps to ensure that both spouses feel supported, respected, and valued even in our busy lives! When you are committed to working together and helping each other, it can create a stronger foundation for your relationship and lead to greater understanding and harmony.

You have a responsibility to support each other, work together towards common goals, and make compromises when necessary. Ultimately, partnership in a marriage is important because it allows you to foster a connection that can help you to feel secure in your relationship indefinitely. You just have to be willing to do the work to remain one!

Arms stretched across a table with fingers clasped over each other

10 Ways to build partnership in your marriage

  1. Set goals and make important decisions together

    When you are a part of a team almost all of your decisions are going to affect the other person and in turn affect your marriage. Choosing to set goals together will help you get on the same page and also help guide your decisions. When goals are clear, it’s easier to find the path toward accomplishing them.

    Let’s say you’re wanting to save for a down payment on a home. The spouse who normally handles the budget could announce that you “can’t eat out anymore because that will help increase your savings!” (or maybe you have to give up your Starbucks). That might make the other person feel controlled or unheard. Instead, bring the goal to the table and establish how much extra you want to save. Your partner might really relish your meals out, but is willing to make cuts somewhere else. This communication helps to foster mutual respect for each other’s thoughts and feelings.

  2. Establish responsibilities and utilize differences

    I really dislike doing the dishes. Jake really dislikes putting away the clean clothes. What worked great for us is to divide and conquer household tasks that we don’t mind doing and then divvying up the rest. Jake and I know exactly what our chores are and we are responsible to get them done. If we have an issue with getting them completed (maybe like during an illness), we just talk it through and help each other when we can. No more nagging and no more arguing who does more.

  3. Compromise

    Compromise is the art of making concessions and coming to an agreement on something that we both can accept, even if it’s not exactly what we initially wanted. Compromise is essential in any marriage because it allows you to respect each other's feelings and views, while still making sure that the relationship is mutually beneficial. Without compromise, relationships can become stale and lack the openness and understanding that helps it thrive.

  4. In all situations, learn to seek understanding first.

    It’s easy to have knee-jerk reactions to your spouse’s tone of voice or forgetfulness or fill-in-the-blank. We ALL do this. Learning to seek understanding during a misunderstanding can be difficult, but it’s possible!

    A good approach is to try to stay calm and listen to what your spouse is saying. Ask questions to confirm that you’re both understanding each other correctly and then try to find common ground.

    Communication is key! Be willing to express your feelings and thoughts in a respectful way, but also be open to hearing their point of view. With patience and understanding, you can find resolution and move forward.

  5. Know what’s worth the argument and what’s not

    If you’re choosing compromise and looking for a deeper understanding when you hit a misunderstanding, you’ll start to naturally recognize what’s worth fighting for…and what’s just going to trigger an argument. We are all different, so our little things won’t be the same as yours, but you’ll know it when you see it. Maybe it doesn’t really matter if the butter is in the fridge or out? Just let the inconsequential things go.

  6. You win together or lose together.

    Are you keeping score? If you’re looking to win, that means your teammate loses, which means the team loses. Think about your own motives. Do you need to be right or do you enjoy giving your spouse proof that they’re wrong?

    Selfishness quickly becomes apparent after you are married and the more you are able to recognize and change the behaviors that don’t serve your marriage, the better and better your relationship will become! Win together or lose together; either way it’s together.

  7. Show appreciation

    Say “Thank You” even in the most mundane tasks. Life can get monotonous and we can easily take for granted the work our partners do to keep our family and household running. Your spouse picked to be on dish duty when you were assigning household chores? Let them know that you appreciate that the sink is always clean before bed. Who cares if that’s their task!

    You can bump this up a notch by relating your thank-yous to their love language! Words of affirmation aren’t for everyone. Maybe your spouse would appreciate an unexpected note in their car or you could grab their favorite box of candy on your way home for the gift lover. It doesn’t have to be a big production to let someone know how much you appreciate what they do for you.

  8. Make time for your spouse

    You’ll probably see some form of “spend time together” on almost every post in this blog. It’s THAT important!

    Where you spend your time is where your heart is. Does that mean you can’t play video games for hours or go out with your friends? No! It means that you are choosing to make time with your spouse a priority in life. You can’t have intimacy with someone you barely see or talk to.

    We’ve set up a weekly schedule that works for us. We both get time to be away from each other to do the things that we want or that help us recharge. It also includes our date night, chore time, and weekly connection point! This takes the guesswork out of busy weeks so we don’t let our priorities slip through the cracks. It’s also flexible, so when things come up we are easily able to move our times around. RARELY do any of our priority times have to be canceled.

  9. How do you talk about your spouse to other people?

    What about your spouse are you sharing with the world? Is it the thoughtful things they did this week or are you lamenting over how you had to tell them to pick up their socks again? Friends are usually a safe place to unwind, but they aren’t a safe place to complain about your partner.

    Complaining about little things that annoy you might seem like no big deal, but you are putting your spouse in a losing situation. When your friends, coworkers or family only hear your negative thoughts about your spouse, you are giving them reasons not to respect them or your marriage.

    It might feel good in the moment to vent, but you are creating an army of people against your partner. The best place to vent is to your spouse! Be open and honest about what’s bothering you and try to come to an agreement on possible changes. As you work on #4 above, your spouse will become the safest place to be real.

    HOWEVER, If you are having problems or are experiencing abuse in your marriage, a trusted friend can be a good resource to find help or a good marriage counselor.

  10. Hold a weekly “business meeting” (or whatever you want to call it)

    Make it a priority to connect every week on key topics. What important decisions do we have to make this week? Is there an issue with the budget, kids, household duties that aren’t getting completed, etc. Or if you’ve divided up certain duties and need help because something came up, this is a great time to ask for support. Avoid the temptation to do this during date night. Reserve that time together for quality and intimate connection with your spouse.

Let’s bring it home

Marriage is meant to be a beautiful relationship of mutual support and understanding. It’s based on trust, respect, and communication, and involves sharing responsibilities, decisions, and goals. Partners in a marriage should strive to meet each other’s needs and work together to build a strong, lasting relationship.

Send us an email at and tell us which of these 10 points resonated with you most. We love to hear your stories. Your successes inspire us to keep working hard at our own marriage!

Share This StoryFacebookTwittermail
CommunicationFriendshipHousehold ManagementIndependence/InterdependenceOneness
Read NextTwo corded dial phones sitting on a white background

12 Ways to Improve Your Communication Skills for a Stronger Marriage

Ever noticed how marriage has a knack for highlighting just how different you and your spouse are? Here’s how communication skills can get you on the same page.

Stop sign in front of a clear sky and power lines

When to Draw the Line: Setting Boundaries in Marriage

If your spouse gets the last of your time and energy each day, you might be inadvertently placing a boundary to keep them OUT instead of in. Let’s evaluate…

A black alarm clock sits alone on a table

Practical Ways to Make Time for Your Marriage

Go from saying “I don’t have time” to knowing how to prioritize time for your marriage with our practical tips.