True Story: How Dare You Break the Rules You Wanted for Our Marriage!

BY: - 21 Jul '16 | Marriage

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True story…

James and Melissa (Mel) were in year 0 of their marriage. They had only been married a few months. One issue they had to deal with was how James was going to handle women from his past—many whom Mel knew and many with whom he was still in communication with because they all moved in the same circles.

After much discussion (mostly James trying to explain why those women weren’t a factor anymore…and Mel not buying it), they agreed that he would only have cordial relationships with them, meaning he’d be friendly if/whenever he ran into one of them, but he’d take care to keep it moving after that. Not a problem. He could cut those chicks back further.

But on the flip side, Mel had some dudes she needed to cut back too. Specifically, her ex-boyfriend, who we’ll call Jack.

When James and Mel got engaged, Mel still had some feelings for Jack because they were once in love. Even though they rarely saw each other and only spoke on the phone every now and then, James knew Jack was still “running game”…because he recognized it. Therefore, James knew…that Jack still thinks…he could still get her back if he wanted to (if you know what I mean).

James knew they still kept in touch by phone every now and then. And James didn’t mind as long Jack respected him as a her husband. After all, Mel on occasion would have to see some of his old buns (read: females he associated with during his single days) around the way if they ever bumped into one of them at work or their various shared social scenes .

The Incident

So one day, Jack made his move. He hit Mel with the, “You know I still love you.” Like a good wife, Mel immediately told James about it.

“You either shut it down…or I’m gonna shut it down!” James demanded.

“I’ll shut it down,” she conceded. So Mel told Jack that she told her husband what he said and she couldn’t talk to him anymore.

So one night, a couple months later, James was in the living room saying his prayers before going to bed. Mel was asleep in the bedroom. While praying James nods off. But while he was sleep, he had a dream that Mel was talking on the phone to Jack.

He suddenly wakes up. Mad! The dream felt more like a vision. And since he was praying, he figured it was a sign from the Lord. So James rushed into the bedroom.

“Melissa! Melissa!” he belts as he nudges her shoulder.

“Huh?” she said as she looked back at him.

“Did you talk to Jack today?



“Uh…yeah,” she said puzzled and reluctantly.

He blew up! “OMG…We talked about this!!! I told you not to…blah blah blah!!! And you weren’t supposed to…blah blah blah!!!”

Then the thought hit him. “Wait a minute,” he paused, “…did you call him or did he call you?”
“I called him…” she answered, “because…”

“Oh My God!” James interrupts. “How dare you!!! You tellin’ me about how I’m not supposed to be around these women I used to mess with, and you’re going behind my back calling dude!?!”

The rest of what was said is classified. But just know…he read her the riot act. From that moment, she knew never to do anything like that again because God was going to tell on her.

The Moral of this Story

The moral of this story is moral authority. It’s not about what Mel did wrong, but what James did right.

If you want to be respected as a leader in your relationship, you must have the moral authority to hold yourself and your mate accountable to the agreed upon rules for your relationship.

If James would have been out there running-game on one of his old-buns, he would have been just like Jack…and just as wrong as Mel. He would have lost any moral authority to challenge Mel.

But because he adhered to the rules they set, he had the moral authority to challenge her and hold her accountable to their agreed upon rules.

This doesn’t mean you are the police or enforcer of the rules. But you are positioned to lead by example. And what woman doesn’t respects that?

BMWK, what do you do if your mate DOESN’T have the moral authority to hold you accountable, but tries to anyway?

About the author

Heath Wiggins wrote 83 articles on this blog.

The Purveyor of Understanding - Heath Wiggins married Bernadette (Bernie) Wiggins in October 1997. Together they founded the Family Bootcamp, LLC., a relationship consulting business that helps people improve the communication and trust in relationships. In 2013, Heath launched the blog and book His Leadership Her Trust to combat the lack of trust women had in allowing men be leaders in their relationships. His mission is to teach Christian men how to lead in such a way that women trust, respect, and actually want to them.


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Newlywed Necessities: 10 Real Tips for Surviving Your First Year of Marriage

BY: - 21 Jul '16 | Marriage

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Eighteen years ago, my husband and I were newlyweds. I’ll always remember my wedding day as though it were yesterday.

All that excitement and energy around us was amazing. We felt the love from all of our family and friends, who were there to celebrate with us. It was going to be an amazing new beginning for the both of us. What we didn’t really consider on our wedding day was that marriage was a lot more than dresses, tuxes and family and friends. It was one of the most serious and greatest commitments we’d ever make.

For all of the newlyweds out there, first off congratulations. It’s an exciting time in your life and a wonderful new beginning. As you navigate through the years and continue to build on your marriage, here are a few tips to keep in mind.


Your marriage needs a foundation
Both partners benefit greatly if the marriage is built on core values and principles. Allowing God to be the head of your union and scripture to lead your marriage is the greatest foundation of all.

Your spouse is your best friend
Now I know some will argue that this isn’t always the case. But if you’re doing marriage right, your spouse will definitely play the BFF role. For example, they’re the one you share everything with and the one you run to when sharing the good and the bad. If you looked up the definition for a BFF, your spouse should fit the position quite nicely.

Your marriage is your safe space
Each partner should create that space for each other. It should be the safe haven where trust and vulnerability are commonplace.

Your marriage is your own
It doesn’t belong to your parents, your in-laws or your friends. What worked for others may not work for you and your spouse. Don’t be easily influenced by outside forces.

Your marriage needs intimacy
Being able to connect mentally, verbally and physically is why healthy marriages survive. Be sure to love on your spouse in every sense of the word. Touching, kissing, caressing, fondling and embracing are all necessary. Make intimacy a part of the regular routine.

Your marriage needs healthy communication
Couples, especially newlyweds, should be building a solid foundation in their relationship. Learning how to disagree agreeably and make requests is key to healthy communication.

Your marriage needs goals
The same as every other plan in your life. Couples should think about the future and plan for it as well. Do you want joy and peace? If so, consider the action steps you both have to take in order to achieve that goal.

Your spouse’s needs won’t stop
Even if you stop providing for their needs, your spouse will still have needs. Protect your marriage. Couples must make sure they are clear on what the other partner needs and be willing to meet those needs consistently.

Your spouse will need you to make sacrifices
Sometimes you’ll come last or have to do something you aren’t that excited about. Marriage is about doing more giving than we are taking. Just remember that.

Your marriage will always be a reflection of the effort you put into it
If it isn’t what you expected, take an internal assessment and examine where you could personally do better.

You may have heard that marriage is work. Don’t allow that to frighten you. It’s the greatest time ever to be married. Marriage can be so amazing and rewarding when couples love hard and are realistic about what’s needed to maintain their relationship. Again, congrats to all of you newlyweds and may God shower your marriage with His love.

BMWK, what other tips would you give to newlyweds?

About the author

Tiya Cunningham-Sumter wrote 635 articles on this blog.

Tiya Cunningham-Sumter is a Certified Life & Relationship Coach, founder of Life Editing and Author of A Conversation Piece: 32 Bold Relationship Lessons for Discussing Marriage, Sex and Conflict Available on Amazon . She helps couples and individuals rewrite their life to reflect their dreams. Tiya has been featured in Essence and Ebony Magazines, and named one of the top blogs to read now by Refinery29. She resides in Chicago with her husband and two daughters. To find out more about Tiya, and her coaching, visit and


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