Honesty in marriage can be difficult but my husband and I have learned that it eliminates problems, helps us trust each other and allows us to have a happy and healthy relationship. We’re not marriage experts but we want to share 6 things we’ve learned about honesty in our Christian marriage.

man standing behind woman with arms wrapped around her in a hug

Our society paints a picture of marriages with perfect couples that never argue and always get along. These couples rarely have challenges, fights, or struggles. It’s as if they all live “happily ever after” (whatever that means).

But I’m here to tell you that perfect marriages like this exist don’t exist. Sorry to burst your bubble, friend.

In a real marriage (or at least our marriage) there are challenges, struggles and we fight occasionally.

Marriage takes work, each and every day!

Yes, you heard me right. Marriage is hard work!

One thing we’ve learned in our marriage is how important it is to be honest with each other. That didn’t just start when we got married but when we were dating.

How being honest with each other started for us!

From the very start of our dating relationship I was brutally honest with Trent.

My heart had been broken from a cheating husband and painful divorce so there was no way that I wanted that to happen again.

Had you been a fly on the wall and listened to our conversations you might have been appalled at just how honest I was with him. In the beginning it was a defense mechanism. I figured that if he couldn’t handle my honesty then there was no point in wasting our time dating.

If it’s any indication of how well my defense mechanism worked, we were married the next year. (All I can say is, our relationship was definitely a God thing!)

Being honest with each other has carried into our 15+ years of marriage and I can’t tell you how healthy it has been for both of us. It feels so good to know that I can be completely honest with him, even when it’s hard!

I’m excited to share what we’ve learned but feel that it’s much more important to share what the Lord thinks about you and your spouse being honest with each other.

What does the Bible say about honesty in marriage?

Do you remember learning the Ten Commands and “thou shall not lie” as a kid? Well, friend, those same principles carry through to adulthood and into our marriage.

The Bible is pretty clear on it’s stance of honesty…take a look at these two verses.

Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth. – 1 John 3:18

The Lord detests lying lips, but he delights in people who are trustworthy. – Proverbs 12:22

If the Bible is our guidebook for life and God thinks truth and honesty is important I think we should make it a priority in our marriage, don’t you?

Is honesty in marriage really necessary? Here are 6 things we’ve learned!

(Disclaimer: Trent and I don’t have a perfect marriage by any stretch of the imagination. Just like every other couple, there are times when we have arguments and disagree, but we make the choice each and every day to love each other.)

1. Honesty in marriage is not always easy.

There are times when you’ll wish you didn’t have to be honest. It would be so much easier to shove certain conversations under the rug and never have to talk about them again.

But we all know that shoving things under the rug only works for a little while. If they’re not dealt with now they’ll eventually lead to bigger problems and blow up one day.

That conversation may seem difficult now but I promise it will be a lot harder months or even years down the road!

2. Honesty doesn’t mean blatantly hurting your spouse.

When they taught us the saying “sticks and stones will break your bones but words may never hurt you” as children, they lied.

Whether you’re as tough as they come or like things straight the point, words hurt.

If your spouse gets hurt easily have a little tact and try your best to find a way to be honest without hurting them.

Sometimes there’s no way around it hurting so they might need some time alone to process through the situation and regroup their thoughts.

Other times this may mean that you have to talk at a later time because it’s just too much in the heat of the moment. It’s totally okay to say that you need to think about something before giving a reply.

3. Honesty takes both spouses.

As children we had a blast riding the see saw. But it was only fun if two people were riding it. (Remember how you’d get stuck on the ground if you were on it by yourself?)

Honesty in marriage is just like a see saw – it takes both spouses.

If both spouses aren’t being honest with each other, it’s not going to work. The spouse that’s trying to be honest is going to get frustrated and end up “on the ground.”

If you find yourself frustrated, talk with your spouse.

overhead view of couple holding hands while drinking coffee

4. Learning when to talk to your spouse is key!

I’ve found that the key to having difficult conversations is to wait until it’s the right time.

Example #1

If your husband has had a difficult day at work trying to talk to him when he walks in the door is not the right time.

Take it from me, it’s best to wait until he’s had a few minutes to chill and unwind then gauge the situation to see whether or not it’s the right time.

Notice that I didn’t say to let him unwind and then have the conversation! Be smart about this and gauge to see if today is a good day or not.

You don’t want to make the situation worse by adding to his hard day, and waiting to have a hard conversation might be best for another day. Just trust me on this one!

Example #2

When I’ve made a meal that Trent doesn’t like he’s learned to come to me later (as in a few days later) and let me know he didn’t like it.

Telling me right after I’ve spent the time making it probably isn’t in his best interest and will just upset me. After all he doesn’t wanting a crying wife on his hands.

I’m grateful when he does tell me because if he doesn’t tell me how am I going to know not to make it again?

Being honest with your spouse is all about timing!

5. Create an honesty code in your marriage.

Let’s face it ladies, we ask our husbands some super stupid questions. (Or, maybe I’m the only one who does this.) These bait and switch questions put the man we love in a difficult spot.

Trent is such a wise man and has come up with a great answer when I ask the bait and switch questions. He’ll say, “There’s not a right answer to that question.”

He’s totally right because either way he answers I’m going to be upset.

Find a “code” like Trent did that works for your marriage – you’ll be glad you did!

You can definitely have more than one code. Others that we have are “that’s not my favorite recipe” (it sounds much better than that dinner was awful, don’t ever make it again) and “it’s after 10.”

couple hugging while standing in front of green leaves

6. Honesty in your marriage creates a healthy relationship.

Like many of you, we have walked through some very hard times together.

Knowing that I can come to Trent with whatever I’m thinking or feeling and have an open and honest conversation with him is so freeing.

The road to honesty isn’t always easy but the healthy relationship it creates is beyond worth it!

When you get in the habit of being honest with each other your marriage will grow and thrive and you’ll see a healthy relationship spring up!

Notice I didn’t say a perfect marriage, but a healthy marriage!

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