Despite the reality show relationship curse bestowed upon many TV couples (fights, break-ups, scandals, divorces...), Michelle and Jim Bob Duggar of 19 Kids and Counting have been going strong for a whopping 32 years. That's like a century in reality TV land! Say what you want about the controversial Christian family that dominated the TLC line-up for 10 seasons, but there's just no denying the Duggars' dynamite marriage. Nineteen children (and a rough couple of years in the spotlight) would test any union, so just how did the reality stars keep their knot tied so tightly? Well, the infamous Duggar patriarch is finally sharing his and Michelle's secret to a fantastic and fulfilling marriage — which will probably be useful even if you're not dealing with almost 20 little ones running around!
Think keeping your relationship strong through seating chart conflicts, in-law arguments, and budget battles is tough? Try finding time for romance between caring for a school bus load of children! But the 19 Kids and Counting stars never let the craziness (wedding planning, child-rearing, or otherwise) get in the way of their love. "We are more in love today than when we married almost 32 years ago!" Jim Bob proudly declared in a Facebook post on Tuesday.
More head over heels than the day they said "I do?" That's quite the statement to make, but can these two back it up? "By God's grace, our marriage is the strongest and sweetest it has ever been," the reality star continued. The Duggars' secret? "Don't let the sun go down on your wrath, Jim Bob says. "Don't let offenses build up, but apologize and make things right quickly." (That means don't sulk off to bed after your fiancé says no to the ceremony dove release.)
"Never say put downs or negative name calling," Jim Bob also cites as one of his key rules for a happy union. "Instead, praise each other with a grateful spirit," he suggests.
One last piece of marriage advice from the Duggar duo? "Go out on regular dates and enjoy each other's company." An excuse for a romantic night out? Well, that one's just too easy!
Think these relationship tips could work for you? What do you have to lose? Remember, if their marriage could survive 19 children and reality TV, yours can certainly make it through wedding planning.