Who better to give marriage advice than marriage officiants who not only are in successful marriages themselves but who have witnessed the starts of so many marriages? We polled some of our amazing YH&M officiants to ask what their best advice would be for newlywed couples.

You might want to take a few notes.

Cory Dueck

Vancouver Officiant; married 24 years

“My top advice for newlyweds is communicate, communicate, communicate!  Very few people can read minds, so express expectations, needs and wants verbally.  Even when confrontation is needed, remember the goal is always heart connection!”

Jane Halton

Vancouver Officiant; married 12 years

“My advice to newlyweds would be that sometimes you have to say no to very important things. There will always be things to say yes to – parties, work meetings, invitations to special events, television premieres, even friends in need. But sometimes, for the sake of your sanity, your health, your partner or your marriage, you have to say no. Learning to say no can be a difficult task but it can have enormous benefits.”

Photo by Charles de Jesus & Alanna Milaney
Photo by Charles de Jesus & Alanna Milaney

Jason Frizzell

Red Deer Officiant; married 13 years

“Top piece of advice for newlyweds – Laugh at yourself. Awkward doesn’t kill you.”

Kristen Olynick

Vancouver Officiant; married 31.5 years

“Best piece of advice for newlyweds….or anyone: Don’t take yourself so seriously!”

Photo by Emily Nicole Photos
Photo by Emily Nicole Photos

Jon Wiebe

Vancouver Officiant; married 11 years

“Top piece of advice for newlyweds is to schedule a weekly date night (and actually keep it).”

Jodi Hartung

Calgary Officiant; married almost 2 years

“My advice for newlyweds is to continually learn how your partner feels loved. For example, you can go and buy your spouse flowers and think they should be over the moon about it… but actually, they would have felt more love if you would have done the dishes. Or you always tell your spouse you love them when they would feel it more if you always hugged them when they get home from work. Learn how your partner receives love and appreciation and then be really intentional to do those things (even if they don’t feel natural to you!).”

Shawn Miller

Vancouver Officiant; married 13 years

“Do what you say you are going to do. If you say you’ll be home at 5pm, then be home at 5pm. If you say you’ll clean the kitchen before bed, then clean the kitchen before bed. And if life gets in the way, as it does, then tell your spouse right away and let them know when it will happen. It’s about being impeccable with your word.

Don’t keep score. It can be easy to keep score in your marriage. For example:

  • I make more money than him so he should clean the house.
  • I initiated sex the last six times, it’s her turn now.
  • I took the kids to dance the last 4 weeks, he needs to catch up.
  • I cook dinner 80% of the time, the least she can do is keep up with the laundry.

Being married is a partnership and things in your relationship will never be equal. There will always be something in your marriage where you give more than you receive, and other things where you receive more than you give. Stop keeping score and focus on serving your spouse. The best marriages are where both of you focus on giving and making each other’s lives more fully alive.”

Photo and feature image by Erica Miller Photography
Photo and feature image by Erica Miller Photography

Beth Carlson-Malena

Vancouver Officiant; married 3.5 years

“My best marriage advice (via my sister, who has been married a lot longer than me) is to never let any annoyance, conflict, or petty thing linger and harden into bitterness and resentment.  Talk about it and work it out together, and even see a counselor or marriage coach if needed – don’t wait too long.  Maybe that sounds kind of negative, but I think bitterness and resentment are the seeds of the end of marriage.  Nip them in the bud!”

Debbie Fawcett

Edmonton Officiant; married 30 years

“My advice – know yourself and tell your partner what you need and listen when they tell yo what they need.”

Erika Enns

Vancouver Officiant; married 20 years

“My advice is to fight FOR each other not WITH each other. When you remember that you’re on the same team, it’s easier to remember that the fight is to keep connection not to be right or win!”

Photo by Shauna Danielle Photography
Photo by Shauna Danielle Photography

written by Riana Ang-Canning

What’s your best advice for newlyweds?