As a young wife, I always reach out for excerpts that helps me understand the journey of marriage life. No one can really prepare you for this long life commitment; you learn as you go and of-course by seeking guidance through books/your parents or other couples, you begin to understand how to deal with certain issues that might rob you of happiness and piece of mind.
No wife or husband wishes to loose themselves in their marriage: I believe that each couple want nothing but the best for their partner and their lives together. Tomi of a #AYoungWife created a feed on Instagram and Facebook where she started sharing her struggles and victories in marriage after years of soul searching and a lot of guidance through books that her husband would gift her so that he could help her understand herself and how best she/they could nourish their marriage.
I set out some questions for Tomi and here is what she had to say:
- What motivated/inspired you to create ‘A Young Wife’ community on Instagram and Facebook? I created a young wife page because I want to be sure I wasn’t the only person thinking marriage can be hard at times. I wanted to share my victories and my struggles as a wife. I also wanted to know what works for other wives.
- Why do you feel that wives need daily devotions that guide them on how to understand their marriage life? Because sometimes we get so carried away with what we are doing right and wrong that we can’t seem to remember the basics like “Relax, you can’t fix anything, you can only influence your husband for a change”
- Are married women keen on improving their marriages? Yes, a lot of them. With social media, it is easy to see a “blooming perfect picture marriage” but it is harder to BE IN a perfect picture marriage. So women are looking for what they can do better.
- Why did you choose a female audience rather than a male audience? Because I can relate to everything I say and what other young wives tell me. I can’t tell a man what to do in his home but I can help him see what is probably going on in his wife’s head.
- Do you feel that the excerpts you share coach women on how to understand their spouses or marriage life? I lean towards both. You can understand marriage and not understand your spouse which will cause friction. If done vice versa, it will cause friction too. So I lean towards both.
- Why is it important for you to create gentle messages to a wife? Because most married women are mature and a gentle reminder is all that is needed. Any aggressive front will push women away.
- Why is it important for you to create notes that makes a wife to sit-down and do self-evaluation so that they can identify the reasons as to why her marriage isn’t working? As wives, we are prone to always say it’s our husbands fault and usually not our fault. But if we take full responsibility of what we are doing wrong, the changes will start coming because we don’t want to have to say sorry for it again. Remember, the goal of being a better wife is not to make your husband happy, it is about you, it is about you being a better person and a better wife. By doing so, the changes you are making in your life will influence your marriage.A settled mind is a peaceful and thoughtful marriage.
- Why is it important for a woman to first love herself before sharing her love with someone else? It is simple. You can’t share what you do not have. I read a book recently and it explains how if there is no love in you or for yourself everything else is pretense…even your spiritually is superficial and void.
- Can a dating couple in a steady relationship relate well with your daily notes? Hmm! I have gotten lots of questions about that.The answer is Yes, they might be able to relate. The problem is, you have to be careful…if you are not married to this person, they owe you nothing. So if you do all these “Young Wife” things you have to keep it at that back of your mind that you are only doing it to become a better person and a better wife in future.
- Do you agree that communication is the key to a successful marriage? I totally agree. I receive long emails and at the end of the story, it usually shows lack of communication. After reading their story as an outsider, I tell myself “I wish they had told each other how much they were hurting” Communication is really important because that is the only way you can measure progress or lack thereof.
- How do you handles readers who question your notes? I ask God for wisdom. I pick my battles. I ask myself “which one will impact more lives if i respond?”
- How do you handle bitter wives who criticize your excerpts? Oh wow! again, I ask God for wisdom. I remind myself “this is a community for young wives to share their struggles and victories” if the bitterness is bad for the community and it is not a well thought out constructive criticism? I delete the comment. This doesn’t happen often.The milieu of the community has to be inviting and the zeal to learn more has to be high. If anyone is obstructing that, then they do not belong to the community.
- Are your notes self-written? Some are. Some are not. Over the years, I have done lots of things and read lots of books to help me be a better wife. so I share what I have learnt. It is easy to write about what you are experiencing. Sometimes I ask myself “what did I do well today? Why did I do it well? what was I thinking? I use the answers to these questions as my “Posts”
- What sort challenge(s) did you face during your early years in marriage and how did you over come them? My greatest challenge was/is having a very different personality as compared to my husband. We are two opposite people. he saw how much I was willing to learn, So he bought me two books on personality types that helped me to figure out “why I act the way I do” and all I need to know about my “personality plus” Understanding that plus LOTS OF PRAYERS and TEARS… I was able to make it through my first year. As time went on, I also got obsessed with listening to marriage and relationship experts online. Each time, I got better…I started to intentionally work on myself each time I listened to their advise. It has helped a lot. Self evaluation is very important to me.
- Is it important for women friends who are married to create self-help groups on how to better or grow their marriages? Yes, I think every woman should share what they do that works for them so that other wives can try it. If it doesn’t work for them, they can try something else. at some point, something will work.Marriage is work. You have to intentionally work on it everyday.
- What kind of advice would you give to newly weds?Be willing to learn!!! Work on yourself, you can’t share what you do not have”
“Take full responsibility for everything YOU DO wrong”
Nobody else needs to know what is going on between the two of you. Social media is dangerous!
“If you can’t communicate well, write down all your thoughts and then read it out to your spouse”
“Marriage is hard, it takes two devoted people to make it through the rough patches”
“Have that one reason why you would quit in mind (deal breaker), if that does not happen, be willing talk though every disagreements”
If you are in trouble, talk to someone fast!!! please don’t talk to everyone, it is not none of their business.
- What kind of advice(s) would you give to a married man?Oh gezz!!! be nice, just know your wife is trying all she can everyday. Praise her. Even when you are upset (if the situation is not a deal breaker) then be gentle with your words. Don’t call her names. If she does something wrong give her at least 3 different times to get it right. If she doesn’t, then you can make a big deal about it. Her flaws doesn’t define her! She is strong…You just need to spend intentional time to UNDERSTAND HER.
Please, give her some thinking space. I am not saying leave her alone, but just sit listen and touch her…It goes a long way. We have so much going on in our heads. Sometimes we don’t want you to fix anything, we just want you to listen.
Please pray with her and for her.
- What do you love about your audience? Oh the willingness to learn. The teachable spirit. The zeal to tell others about it. The love we have for our husbands. The enthusiasm to be a better person and a better wife.
- Any plans on turning ‘A Young Wife’ notes/excerpts to something bigger? Perhaps a book?Hmmmmm, My “bigger picture” is to be able to travel to every country that has access to “Young Wife” to speak. My second dream is to write a devotional for young wives.
If I had a million dollars or if I had a sponsor right now, that is all I will ask for. Funds to travel to each of these countries to IMPACT A LIFE! just one life! and funds to write a devotional for every young wife.
- How would you describe yourself? :-) A teachable person, willing to learn and share knowledge. As a person, I can’t wait to help and serve just one more person.
Here are some notes from her Instagram page @ayoungwife