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Is The Grass Really Greener In Other Marriages???

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Women Living Well Blog: Is The Grass Really Greener In Other Marriages???

Women Living Well Blog

Monday, September 13, 2010

Is The Grass Really Greener In Other Marriages???

Sometimes we are tempted to think that the grass is greener in other marriages. We imagine that someone has something better than what we have and we want it. We can't see the dirt from our side angle. And possibly it's super green in the front yard where people see but in the back yard it's filled with dead spots that are hidden from acquaintances.

To be honest, the neighbors on both sides of us literally have greener grass. They both have in ground sprinklers and spent time tending to their yards this summer. Their yards look gorgeous. Ours on the other hand, is a bit burnt out by the sun. While it's been regularly mowed and fertilized it's clear that I have not spent any time putting sprinklers out to water it. My husband and I have laughed and said - "the only green part of our lawn is where the neighbors sprinkler has actually sprayed over onto our yard!" lol!

We could have exactly what the neighbors have if we would simply water our yard and tend to it!

Could this same principle apply in marriage. Before we jump ship or sit in discontentment, I wonder if we watered and tended to our marriages if we could have the greener marriage!

In what ways can we water and tend to our marriages?
1. Accept the fact that all marriages are flawed. "Conflicts are not a sign that you have married the wrong person.They simply affirm that you are human." Dr. Gary Chapman

2. Make your husband second priority only to God. Flip flop your life so your marriage is not coming in dead last and you will find grass that looks burnt out start to grow green again.

3. Set aside one night a month as a date night. Spend some time just enjoying your husband. Hold hands, steal kisses, talk, and listen. Slow down and enjoy each other like you did during the dating days!

4. Smile at your husband.

5. If your grass is looking brown in some spots tend specifically to those spots with prayer. Do not let it die!

6. Do not neglect your marriage and assume that it will grow all on its own. That's not how it works. My brown grass is not going to turn green on its own. It needs our attention. Discipline yourself to tend to it.

7. And my final point is in this funny video (a parody of Taylor Swift's song Love Story). Go ahead and watch it - I'll wait for you while you do...

Know that you are NOT alone! There are some pretty crazy seasons of life where spots of the grass just start to die. Dora cups and Chuck E Cheese take the place of romantic dinners out. Enjoy your family moments at Chuck E Cheese - but remember ALSO to tend to your marriage...don't let it get shoved aside because in 15 short years - your Dora cup drinkers will be out of the house and it will be back to just you and your husband. Will your grass be green at that point or dead?

The choice is yours.

Proverbs 14:1 "A wise woman builds her house, but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down."

Walk with the King!



Blogger melissa said...

thanks for the encouragement! & I loved the video parody. :)

September 13, 2010 at 7:35 AM  
Blogger Sherry @ Lamp Unto My Feet said...

Loved the parody! :) It has been a while since we have gone on a date at night. We usually do a lunch date about every week or so. Does that work or?

September 13, 2010 at 8:19 AM  
Blogger Toni said...

Love the analogy. If only more married couples would take to heart what you wrote today. :( And I say that very humbly, as you are correct in saying that no marriage is flawless.

September 13, 2010 at 8:22 AM  
Blogger Jill said...

We got to see Anita Renfroe live for mother's day (took my mom), and she is hysterical! Great video, and GREAT analogy. (and don't feel bad about your yard, ours is dead as a doornail from the sun, too!)

September 13, 2010 at 8:25 AM  
Anonymous heidi @ wonder woman wannabe said...

Great thoughts Courtney!

Cultivating a thriving marriage really does take a lot of intentional thought and action to make it so.

I'm so with you on the importance of a regular date night as a way to bring you together and keep a sence of intimacy - so much so, that I'm currently hosting a link - up party GIVE-AWAY to celebrate Re-Igniting the Romance and spark in our marriages through planning a regular date night.

Read all about it:

I'd love it if you wanted to link up to enter and/or share the give-away opportunity with your readers as well. I'll be selecting a winner Oct. 4th so there's plenty of time to link up a post.

September 13, 2010 at 8:36 AM  
Blogger Darlene Schacht said...

My favorite part is when he drives up with his mom in the front seat. LOL! So romantic, in a we're totally desperate kind of way. I've been there--wait, I AM there!

September 13, 2010 at 8:50 AM  
Blogger Kelley with Amy's Angels said...

Very nicely written! The first part about arguments, made me think back to before I was married...

When my husband and I went through pre-marriage counseling, we were told something that has stuck with me. We opted to visit a licensed marriage & family therapist who also used the same "Prepare & Enrich" inventory that our church used. She said to us, "You can have two couples where everything is an exact carbon copy. But one couple is unhappy, and one is happy. The couple that is happy is the couple that knows how to 'get through' things, learn and move forward." This was proof to me that just because you have an BIG argument (we've all had those!) doesn't mean you're headed for divorce court. It doesn't mean your flawed. It doesn't mean any other marriage is better than yours. It doesn't mean anything other than you had an argument.

September 13, 2010 at 9:10 AM  
Blogger carebear7951 said...

Ok, God is really talking to me. I keep coming across this kind of advice-right when my husband and I are having a terrible time. And I'm so tempted to let it go. I have 4 children (and that takes a LOT of my energy) and I don't have it in me sometimes to be all that he needs. I just feel so tired. And he's so cranky. But from the book I"m reading to your blog....this is the message I keep getting. *(Loved the song!)

September 13, 2010 at 9:12 AM  
Blogger Jennifer Sikora said...

Thanks for this Courtney. I used to be one of the women who thought the grass was greener and almost traded mine in for another lawn. Glad God changed my heart!

Proverbs 14:1 is my sig line on every email I send.



September 13, 2010 at 9:15 AM  
Blogger Missy O'Brien said...

I just had to let you know... God used you this morning Courtney! My husband and I have friends who have a family member whose wife is wanting a divorce and is in the process of getting papers drawn up. My husband and I have been praying about this and it has been heavy on our hearts. It was on my heart when I went to bed last night and when I woke up this morning. God is so awesome... both my devotions this morning showed me what God is wanting me to do in this situation. Then I pulled up your blog and gave me tools to use when talking with this couple!!! This was no coincidence... God laid this on your heart so I could read it!!!! Thank you for your devotion and words!!!

September 13, 2010 at 9:17 AM  
Blogger Casey Martinez said...

My husband and I talk together all the time about how harmful it is to compare ourselves to our friends who are married...we are not them, we are us and we have unique needs and interests that are different than our friends. WE need to look to the Lord for direction and then work it out together. Thanks for the reminder!

September 13, 2010 at 9:27 AM  
Blogger Traci Michele said...

Amen sister! Loved this post. I like the analogy between the green grass in the front yard, and the brown in the back.

I thought it was too funny about where you said the only green spot is where your neighbor's sprinkler reaches over into your yard, LOL!

For us, we are the middle "ground". On one side of us, their yard is PERFECTO to T! The other side, the grass is knee high... lol

September 13, 2010 at 9:28 AM  
Blogger Maria Joao said...

Thank you! The video made me cry... and laugh... And though we don't have a lawn, the image is one I will remember and hold onto (just translate it into potted plants...;))

September 13, 2010 at 9:29 AM  
Blogger Just Jen said...

I'm a new reader to your blog. [Found it through another blog and haven't been able to stop reading.]

My fiance' and I have just gone through a really rough patch in our relationship, and I have just started praying again. [When I was in HS a youth director kinda turned me away from the Lord. Long story.]

I have just started to read the Bible, again, and after starting at Genesis 1:1, my soon to be SIL suggested I start with John. I am doing that today.

Everyone around us thought that our relationship was perfect, and then when we almost split things up were shocked. This post really hits home.

Thank you for your blog and every message it sends.


September 13, 2010 at 9:35 AM  
Blogger S Club Mama said...

We may not be able to afford date nights (or sitters) but we try to do stuff alone even if it's only after the kids are in bed.

September 13, 2010 at 9:39 AM  
Anonymous jami said...

Great post! That song actually made me start to tear up! My husband and I have no sitters or family nearby and I can't remember the last time we had a special time together alone...
Thank you for all you do to encourage your sisters in Christ, Courtney!

September 13, 2010 at 9:47 AM  
Blogger The Fabulous Flints said...

Great blog!!! Loved the Anita Renfroe clip. Thanks as always Courtney for your honesty and insight.

I think the grass next door that is "greener" just might be so because there is more FERTILIZER (not in a good way either). :-). In other words, there is a lot of poop that happens that we can't see. The problem is that we tend to judge our worst against others BEST. It's apples to oranges. It's impossible, improbable and unbiblical to judge this way. Comparison (as previously stated) is dangerous.

My marriage is JUST THAT. MINE! I'm so grateful for Nathan and for ALL of our ups and downs. We don't have a monthly date we have a WEEKLY date. We have five kids and we HAVE to make this a priority. Sometimes it's just a drive and a milkshake. It's not always glamorous, but it IS time together.

Be blessed today (all readers) and let's keep praying for each other AND our marriages.

September 13, 2010 at 11:23 AM  
Blogger Heidi said...

Perfectly stated. I love Dr. Chapman- we took the Love Languages class at our church and it made a huge difference in our life. Marriage is a lifelong journey- not meant for the weak!

September 13, 2010 at 11:26 AM  
Blogger Cindy said...

Well said Courtney, and thanks for the reminder and encouragement.

Hope you have a blessed day and week.

September 13, 2010 at 12:03 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

I came to your blog specifically this morning because something here always lifts me up, and I needed it today. I guess the Lord was working in both our lives with this; you presenting it and me needing exactly what you wrote today. I'll not go into details, I would just love some prayers sent up, if that's not asking too much. I believe prayer works, just seems mine are not getting through. Loved the song!

September 13, 2010 at 12:06 PM  
Blogger Amanda said...

Wow!! Love this. Been following your blog for some time now after seeing you on Rachel Ray. You are my real life inspiration. ((And I think my hubby is happy about that ;-) LOL)) I "Share" your posts on my facebook a LOT and this is most definitely one that will be shared! And that video was amazing!

September 13, 2010 at 12:10 PM  
Blogger GlowinGirl said...

Such a good point, Tracy, and I love the quote from Gary Chapman. Those brown spots are only signs that we need to care for them a bit more, not go park our chairs in another yard!

September 13, 2010 at 12:22 PM  
Blogger Mary Joy said...

Interesting post, Courtney. I have found that for me...its very important that I not do comparisons with our marriage compared to others or how I mother and he fathers compared to others. After having walked down the comparison road in the past...I learned that it is a trap for me that never leads to anything positive. So we just work on doing our best...making mistakes, learning from them, reading what God's word has to say about it, reading Godly resources-like Dr. Chapman. Every marriage relationship is completely different because no couple has the same two people. So no matter how much watering we do we will not look like someone else's. We are unique, imperfect but best friends. I agree with your things to focus on working on in our relationships...we are working on having at least 1 hour every day that is set aside for the two of us alone--no kiddos--when they are in reconnect. Sometimes the date night or afternoon is only once a month but I have found that reconnecting for a little bit everyday makes a big difference for us.

Thanks for the great reminders!

September 13, 2010 at 12:58 PM  
Blogger Two in One said...

As a single person, those marriages look pretty green some days, but I know (and trust God) that I'm where I should be. I get a freedom from that obligation, that I can in turn use to pursue either my own agenda, or to work towards God's purposes--time that a married woman might not have.

September 13, 2010 at 2:07 PM  
Blogger Erin MacPherson said...

Hi Courtney! This is a great post... there are so many times that I think "Well, if my husband was like ____'s husband, well, then I wouldn't get mad!" But that's not true!!! Thank you for the reminder!

September 13, 2010 at 2:16 PM  
Blogger JenLo said...

I just saw a quote that said "If the grass is greener on the other side, maybe it's because you aren't taking good care of your own grass." Thanks for this timely reminder!

September 13, 2010 at 3:53 PM  
Blogger momstheword said...

Great post and one that we all really need to hear over and over. So true that you can't wait until the kids are grown to pay attention to your marriage. If you do that, you won't have one.

I also loved the musical parody, so funny! Thanks for linking up to Making Your Home Sing Monday.

September 13, 2010 at 4:59 PM  
Blogger Yessel N. Arevalo said...

Thanks for sharing the video and continuing to encouraging married women to press on in their marriages; loving their husbands, their children and especially God to the fullest. This video is just so awesome, I have to save it and put it on my blog too! :) May God continue to bless you, your family and your ministry.

September 13, 2010 at 8:31 PM  
Blogger Stam House said...

Love love love this video :-) not to far from the truth LOL!

I agree with all the point that you posted, for those who have a very tight finance or young one and no sitter etc here are my tips

1. make a room in your home that is clutter free, no toys, kinda a statuary for you and your husband to share time together. (having a date at home cost you nothing!)

2. make you bed and bedroom attractive (intimacy is always more welcoming in a freshly made bed )

3. breath mint , deodorant and body spray can be a life saver for a quick honey your home and the kids are all sleeping, you wantta...

be creative, candle light diner after the kids are in bed, eating in front of you favorite movie etc... make you marriage fun and spent time together :-)


(mother of 3 little girls 3 and under, and passionately in love with my best friend, my dear husband)

September 13, 2010 at 8:55 PM  
Anonymous Alyssa said...

My husband and I text each other about that all the time! I love the video!

September 13, 2010 at 10:29 PM  
Anonymous Sal said...

The song/video is so true it kinda made me sad watching it. I'm glad it had a happy ending but the husband comes through in the end....highly unlikely in my case.

September 14, 2010 at 9:08 AM  
Blogger Stephanie said...

great post! i needed this! just started the five love languages study last night with my lifegroup ladies and this goes along perfect with it! loved the video...i laughed and even cried at the end when he showed up with his mom to babysit!

September 14, 2010 at 11:48 AM  
Blogger Beth said...


I just love your humor. I also enjoy reading the humor you and your husband have with each other. Finding each other funny is such a blessing in a marriage.

Here is some more advice that is quoted directly from my husbands mouth...."If you are going to fight, fight naked."


September 14, 2010 at 11:57 AM  
Blogger Dianne said...

What an interesting analogy about the grass being greener on the other side. If the grass really is greener, it could be because someone is taking the time to tend to their grass, and you're not taking the time to tend to yours!

September 14, 2010 at 2:33 PM  
Blogger L2L said...

This reminds me of when I demanded that my husband and I go to counseling with our then pastor. funny thing after we left i looked at my husband and said, "wow, we really don't have that many problems huh?" He just smiled and said "yeah I was wondering why we were going." Then a couple of years later I caught myself, window shopping. You know where you compare the worst of your life with the best of what you think everyone else has. I'm glad God quickly corrected me in that line of thinking. And to be honest what I find now is there is always something else I like about how someone elses husband does this or that but then there is also something else about me that my husband so lovingly accepts that the same husband would not and so now I work on loving my husband as he is and now how I think he should be!!!!!

September 14, 2010 at 8:39 PM  
Blogger Crystal said...

Thanks for this! I cried when I saw the video.. it's just so real to life. Although, I doubt the ending would ever happen. I don't think my husband has planned a date since we got married. I'm committed to my man though. I just wish we had more time together and he initiated it.

September 16, 2010 at 8:25 PM  
Blogger Gisley Scott said...

Hello Courtney,

so you're right about the grass.It's better to take care of it now when you only have to trim than having to deal with a lot of stress later on!



September 17, 2010 at 5:29 PM  

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