Advice For Soon-To-Be Husbands From A Guy Who Hasn't Been Married Long Enough To Give It


What's up, fellas? How's everything? Good? Great!

How have I been? Great. Marriage is the shit. I always have clean socks, my weekends are full of activities, and my wife even introduced me to something called a "couscous" last month. (What exactly is couscous? Some bougie-ass rice, basically.)


Anyway, I know you all are about to get married. Which is fucking great. Congratulations. I haven't been married that long — this month makes it six months — so I'm really not all that qualified to give you marriage advice. But this is America, remember. Qualifications don't mean shit.

In light of that, here's a few things I've learned during this time. Some of these are things I'm still working on. Some of them are things, well, I'll might still be working on for the next few decades. But they're all things that A) I didn't think much about while single and B) became more crucial after jumping the broom.

Things you think won't bother you — things that have never bothered you — will bother you. It's up to you to learn how to deal with them.

I have a couple friends who, up until a couple years ago, had one of the best homes of anyone I knew. It was spacious and open with hardwood floors throughout; a three-level townhouse with two bedrooms and two baths and in a prime location. It was basically perfect for them. They were also renting.

While hanging out one day, I asked one of them if they ever considered buying the place. They replied quickly ("No") and then proceeded to give a long list of reasons why they wouldn't (the kitchen was substandard, there were some issues with the plumbing, etc).

The home was perfect for them then because they were renting. It wasn't a permanent situation. But, once the idea of permanence came into the picture, a few of the flaws became a bit more apparent.


Marriage can have a similar effect on relationships. Minor irritations you overlooked when a woman you were dating possessed them can become, well, less minor when you make a commitment to be with someone forever. And trust me when I tell you that some little things you do that other seasonal girlfriends and f-buddies ignored or laughed away will irritate her too. Because she has to live with your ass and deal with that shit every day.

How you deal with these permanence-related realizations will help determine the temperature of your relationship.


Remember that there was a time not too long ago when she was just some chick you wanted to fuck the shit out of

Now, obviously your soon-to-be-wife isn't just "some chick." She might be an astronaut or an assistant principal or a Subway sandwich artist or something. She might even be Elle Varner. But there was a point in your past when you didn't know her yet. You weren't dating, you weren't in a relationship, and you might have not even known her name. But you saw her somewhere and thought "Damn! I don't know what that astronaut chick's name is, but I want to fuck the shit out of her! Damn!"


My point? It can be easy to fall into a pattern of treating each other like roommates — people who live, eat, and occasionally watch Netflix together — instead of two people who were, at one time, completely infatuated with and in lust with each other. It's not possible to keep that type of spark going 24/7, but remember it on those lazy Sundays when you're both sitting in bed, playing with your phones. And those mundane Wednesdays when you've both worked an 11 hour day and barely acknowledge each other at home. Remember that this is her; this is the woman you fantasized about. This is the woman you wouldn't stop telling your boys about. This is the woman who made you heart jump the first time she talked to you. And, to be even more frank, this is the woman you jerked off to a few times. And now she's sitting on your couch.

Being married doesn't mean you stop doing all the things — the kisses on the back of her neck, the slight rubs of her ass when she walks by, etc — you fantasized about doing before you were able to do them.


Learn how to fight

It's inevitable. Regardless of how mild-mannered you think you are and pride yourself on being, if you're spending the rest of your life with another adult human person, you're going to have some disagreements. Some of these disagreements will be resolved quickly. Some will not. And some of those will turn into actual fights. How am I so sure this will happen to you? Well, you know who's a mild-mannered person who prides themselves on their ability to stay even keel and keep their cool? Me. You know who else is? My wife. If fights can happen to us, fights can happen to anyone.


Anyway, in this context, "learning how to fight" doesn't mean "learning how to win fights." It means "learning how to have a heated argument with the person you're in love with." This means some of the insults, put downs, and other tricks you might have used in fights before are no longer necessary. Yeah, you're upset. But this is a person you love. Your motherfucking wife. You don't want to hurt her or do any irreversible damage to the relationship, so learn how to be mad without allowing that bout of anger to damage your marriage.

Get a room

It can be a spare bedroom. An office. A garage. A basement. A basement bathroom. Shit, it could even be a walk-in closet. Whatever it is, you need an easily accessible space where you can just go and do…things by yourself for a little while. And you will need the room because the rest of the home — even if its a house you bought yourself before you got married — will be hers. (Trust me.) So, it's paramount for your sanity — and hers as well — for you to have a space that's "yours." What you do in that space is your decision. You can do push-ups. You can watch twerk videos. You can teach yourself how to heel-toe. Whatever. You just need that space. And she needs for you to have that space.


There's more I can say, but I don't want to overheat your brain just yet. Plus, I plan to have an entire new batch of advice for you once I reach the one year mark, so come back in July.

Oh, and congratulations and shit.

Damon Young is the editor-in-chief of VSB, a contributing opinion writer for The New York Times, and the author of What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Blacker (Ecco/HarperCollins)



Question for the married/engaged folk, did any of you all consider having a prenuptial agreement?