Being married for 12 years

This Sunday Rob and I would have been married for 12 years. Huh. While that wedding and life of doing whatever we wanted, whenever we wanted seems like a REALLY long time ago now and has been replaced with never ending planning, and noise and CHILDREN, it’s been one hell of a whirlwind. What a trip!

I don’t know what the secret to a good marriage is. We sure ain’t perfect, but we still make each other laugh, all these sleep deprived years later so here’s what I do know about married life, 12 years in.

1. The best part of our day as a couple is known as the “golden hour” but it could in fact only be the “golden 20 minutes”. It’s the time after all 3 of our kids are not only in bed, but ASLEEP and the time before we fall asleep on the couch. We live for this time and celebrate it by ignoring each other on the couch whilst scrolling through our phones and occasionally sharing something we snigger at.

2. We talk about food. A lot. What we are going to eat. What we can’t eat. What we will eat. What we will feed the children. What we wish we were eating. Washing up after cooking. Not cleaning up properly after cooking. Who will shop. And about milk. A lot. We go through a lot of milk.

3. Travel together, while trickier with kids in tow, is still so important to us. Travel anywhere will do the trick…even camping. A change of scene from the monotony of the daily grinds truly puts a pep back in your step. Everyone in my family loves holiday Beth more than normal Beth.

4. The worst fights we have EVER had are the ones between the hours of 11pm and 5am. And ones involving kids and sleep or not sleeping and husbands not waking despite very loud huffs and puffs and the kids desire to only want their Mum. Man we have had some doozies. Everything is worse between those hours.

5. Rob getting me a coffee is like the most romantic thing he could do. A surprise hot large flat white is all it takes this day to make me truly happy.

6. We spend a lot of time re-explaining plans about work or otherwise to each other saying over and over again “but I told you about this? We talked about this!” and then realising that you have no recollection whatsoever and that you really should listen more often. We both do this to each other several times a week.

7. We talk about stuff like dishwasher tablets and ill fitting garbage bags these days much more about the stuff we used to like hopes and dreams and plans for the future. I’m OK with that, dishy tablets that don’t dissolve are NOT OK. Isn’t life hard enough?

8. We still make each other laugh every day. Thank god. We are entirely outnumbered by our offspring, spend our days doing what we can for them, trying to make sure they are happy and loved and safe. It’s like a tag team for a really tough boss that pays badly but it’s a great company so you just suck up the shit hours and get on with it because at least you have your BFF at work with you.

9. There’s little to no shame left at this stage. We wee in front of each other while the other brushes teeth. We fart, we snore. I pumice the dead skin off my heels in front of him despite seeing him wince in disgust at it. And they say romance is dead!

Despite all this, there’s no one else I would want by my side. The calm to my peri-menopausal tempestuous storm, the patience to my fire cracking fuse blowing, the quiet to my noise. I know that these are the trenches of early married life: life with small kids in your thirties and early forties where we thud to the ground with the reality of family life and work and responsibilities and BEING A GROWN UP DOING GROWN UP STUFF MAN WHY DOES IT COST SO MUCH? But we are still having fun while doing it and I have to say, like I do on most days, thank GOD for Robert Macdonald.

We’ve done orrrrrright.

Here’s to many more my friend!

Where are you at? 1 year? 37 years?
What’s your advice for a happy marriage?


  1. I just read this out to my husband, interrupting his phone scrolling and TV watching of Robin Hood Prince of Thieves on TV (because, 1994 memories in every line) because like you, Easter Saturday 2005 is our wedding date and we did a little cheer of ‘woo hoo, we’re normal!!’ 12 yrs, 4 kids, still trying to work out how to afford the champagne lifestyle we dreamt of with all these awesome (expensive) dependents we created.
    PS – he has also just got up from the couch and asked if I’d like a coffee … thanks Beth! You reminded him to be romantic… ?

  2. Bless you Beth and Rob, you seem to have it all together so much better than a lot of people. I love reading this post. Stay happy together. xxx

  3. 12 years yesterday and you are spot on! I think the big one is laughing together. If you’re doing that you’re doing ok.

  4. I have been with my husband since I was 14 and he was 15. That’s 43 years and married for 37 of those years. We argue a lot but that’s us. He is my world and I would like to think I am his. He is a fantastic father to our 3 kids. He makes me coffee every single morning, I never have to ask. He Carries my handbag if I am loaded up. He has always opened doors and pulls out my chair. He has even (sorry for saying this) wiped my bottom when I couldn’t due to injuries with both hands. That’s disgusting but it’s also love. I couldn’t imagine my life with out him.

  5. I feel I need further explanation in regards to the shot where Rob is wearing the kilt. Oh, and 18 years here in Qatar, it feels like a lot less than that but when I look at how much we’ve packed in to those years I understand why its rushed past. We are putting our marriage to the test this year by building a house while G goes through the uncertainty of a company merger and I start a new business. We figured last year was a bit boring with a child off to boarding school, breast cancer and me going to back to full time work.

    Never ever stops.

    • Yes, try harder Kirsty! That photo was from Harper’s 2bd birthday rainbow party and I had no idea if the cake was going to turn out to not and it did. I have no idea who took it but I am SO glad that it exists! x

  6. Ahhh I think you must have been eavesdropping on our house!! Everything you said times 10. 13 years for us. Yes marriage with kids is very different and it is so important to make time occasionally (however you can…. beg, borrow or steal a babysitter/relo/friend if necessary) to have time as just the two of you. Stay focused on the bigger picture rather than festering over little stuff. Hug eachother. And ‘wife’ in our house stands for Wine In Fridge Early.

  7. We were 12 years yesterday married. It’s been full of ups and downs but wouldn’t have it any other way! Well done and happy anniversary for Sunday!

  8. Just clicked up 15 years this March. No real wisdom to share. Marriage is full of ups and downs. But our children (one of each) are better versions of both of us. We both work together to make sure they are happy and empathetic souls.

  9. Laurie-anne says

    We’ve been married 33yrs on 31st March. 2 beautiful daughters & 3 grandchildren later have no advice on how this happens. He’ll make me tea in the morning & is my biggest cheerleader even when I don’t think it myself.

  10. Yep, pretty much our life too. Married 19 years in May. I interrupted my husband’s phone scrolling to read it as well!

  11. We have been together 18 years and married for nine with two kids in the middle there. He drives me up the wall most days but those things that drive me crazy are the things i love the most too. The thing that makes it last for us is that I know he always has my back and I have his no matter what.

  12. we have been married for 25 years. my biggest tip would be to never lose your sense of humour

  13. We celebrated 23 years on March 5th. My best tip is always make time for each other. Life gets pretty darn busy and complicated, so try not to loose each other in the process of the hustle and bustle of kids and work. Congrats Beth and Rob on12 years xx

  14. My husband and I have been married 24 years. 3 almost out the door kids, known each other since high school and still only 45. The trick for a happy marriage? Always put each other first. The reality of that is what makes it tricky…..never stop trying, never stop appreciating each other. Happy wedding anniversary to you, wishing you many, many years of happiness and love. ❤️

  15. 17 years married & 4 kids later this is what I know-
    1. a good marriage takes works. Sometimes a lot of work, other times not so much
    2. You have to learn to forgive & compromise.
    3. It’s ok to fight, it doesn’t mean your relationship is shit.
    4. You don’t have to do everything together. It’s ok to have friends/interests that don’t include each other !
    5. Talking is key! Talk about the weather, politics, the kids, the garden , plans, the past, the future, talk about it all because it’s all important.
    6. Don’t ever stop laughing at each other & with each other. Some days you might wanna cry but if you can laugh instead that’s better.

  16. Congratulations! And what a way to celebrate – NY!!! I’m probably a bit too excited to see posts and blogs about your trip! My husband and I will be married 5 years this October, 7 years together and 3 noisy boys. We been biz-zay! Sleep deprivation and stress from external sources IS 99% of what starts fights in our house. The other 1% is when he doesn’t listen and then there is 3 tired little kids having meltdowns because they should have gone to bed at 6.30pm not dancing in the lounge room for 2 hours like crazy animals with their daddyo. ?
    Have a wonderful holiday!! ??

  17. I love the way you love him, Beth! This is so gorgeous – the eyes were a little bleary at the end there.. I laughed so much – so much truth. We are coming up 12yrs in September (sadly no NY trip planned though) and so much of what you said rings true. This is real love. Not the shiny sparkly lust part at the front. Blessed we are, indeed! Have the most wonderful trip x

  18. Happy anniversary Beth & Rob ? Loved this post. It’s a true reflection of marriage several years in – thank you for writing so honestly (as always). I’ll feel a little better tonight when my hubby & I talk at length about the kids swimming lessons, what did he eat for lunch, recycling the bottles and can he take the rubbish out? ☺️

  19. We clocked up 16 years married on the 3rd of March. We have a 13 year old son who is definately the classic moody teenager. My husband and I are best friends.

  20. Happy Anniversary, as always love your blog. It will be 26 years for us this year, no real tips on a good marriage, the other ladies covered them, he makes me coffee every morning, always a good start, is a fantastic Dad to our 3 kids. You know you have the real deal when he agrees to convert the garage so that my mother who has Alzheimers can move next door! Looking forward to your New York blog, we go in October, so will be taking notes. xx

  21. 12 years too. 2 kids. We’re doing all right too. I had a complete shocker on Monday morning, couldn’t go to work, just completely flat. He could see it, took the day off and looked after me. He knows me, sometimes better than i know myself. He can sometimes annoy the shit out of me but there is no one else I’d rather be with. I look at some of my friends hubby’s and know i did very well indeed!!!

  22. ?Happy Anniversary Beth & Rob?!! Gorgeous pics of you two! Here’s cheers to many more years of amazing memories for you both?
    Thank you for sharing Beth! ?
    Luv Liz XO

  23. Love this post Beth. We had our 13th Wedding Anniversary on Valentines Day this year. There are ups and downs, and have been quite a few downs over the past couple of years but you get that don’t you, just have to keep going. I am no quitter so he is definitely stuck with me, ha ha ha.

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