When we get married, it’s for richer or poorer, for better or for worse, and in sickness and health. However, our marriage vows usually don’t say anything about boredom when our spouse is passionate about something in which we have no interest.
Even though God joins two people together as one in marriage, we still retain our individual identities. Imagine how boring our lives together would be otherwise.
John Landis used that very premise in his movie, Coming to America. Eddie Murphy played an African prince who comes to America to seek an independent-minded bride. He makes that choice after his father tries to force him to marry a woman taught from birth to have no likes or desires of her own and to agree with everything her husband says.
Sometimes people do marry a partner who is very similar, with many likes and dislikes in common. Others link up with complete opposites, with differing traits that complement each other. If you fall into the first category, you’ll still have areas in which your interests diverge. If you’re in the second, your differences will spice up your relationship.
The Bible has this to say about love:
Love is patient and is kind; love doesn’t envy. Love doesn’t brag, is not proud. —1 Corinthians 13:4
What do you do to maintain marital bliss, even if your spouse has hobbies that bore you to tears? How do you show patience and kindness in something you don’t care about, even though it’s your partner’s passion? Here’s how to learn to like those hobbies, or at least be supportive of them:
Learn More about It
Many men, and even some women, are glued to the TV during the various sports seasons. Their partners watch in puzzlement as they get all excited over football or basketball. To the uninitiated spouse, such sports might look confusing or dull, and they don’t understand what inspires such great passion in fans.
If you fall into that category, commit to learning more about your spouse’s favorite sports. You might not find them so boring if you know exactly what’s going on. Even if that doesn’t draw you in to the same level of fandom, at least you’ll understand the game, and perhaps you can muster some enthusiasm to root for the home team.
Participate in It
Does your spouse love to do something, like hiking, fishing, cooking or golfing that you find to be mind-numbingly boring? If so, your partner will almost certainly appreciate it if you bite the bullet and join him or her occasionally. By doing this, you don’t have to force yourself to like the actual hobby. Instead, view it as spending quality time with the person you love.
Such hobbies can open up the door to talking with each other or just enjoying the together time. For example, hikes are great times to chat with each other about topics like how you met and your favorite qualities in each other. Golf is a good time for some friendly joking around, and fishing is more about the leisure and relaxation than it is about reeling in a big catch.
Take Lessons Together
Speaking of golf and other hands-on hobbies, perhaps you don’t participate because you don’t have a clue as to what you’re doing. Such hobbies can run the gamut from golf to tennis to sailing to scrapbooking, doing crafts or embarking on home improvement projects.
For every one of those hobbies, and many others, you’ll find classes in your local area. Take some lessons together, if possible. Even though your spouse will be at a higher skill level than you, it can still be fun.
You can also take lessons on your own and surprise your spouse with your new found knowledge and interest. He or she will be flattered that you care enough to not only support a “boring” hobby but to take an active role.
Be a Supporter
Perhaps your spouse has a hobby that you don’t want any part of trying on your own. For example, he or she might love running marathons when you’re not even interested in trying a 5K run. You might even have a physical limitation, like an old leg injury, that prevents it.
In that case, you have a perfect opportunity to take on a supportive role. You can be your partner’s biggest cheerleader on the sidelines. Help him or her on race day by double checking by packing up the car, driving to the event in the wee hours of the morning, and waiting at the finish line to give an enthusiastic hug and kiss for a job well done.
All of these are ways in which you can be patient and kind to your partner. You don’t have to share the same passion, but you’ll show your love by taking an active interest.