Sharon DeVellis: Inside Scoop


How Switching Phones Saved My Marriage

The Secret To A Successful Marriage

My husband and celebrated our twelfth wedding anniversary this past February.  In total, we’ve been together for 15 years.  I don’t look upon it as a celebration of our wedding day so much as a celebration of making it through 4,382 days together, not including the 2 extra days for leap years, and still loving each other.

What I’ve learned throughout our marriage is this: It’s not the big things that will remove the magic from your relationship, it’s the little things.  Rustling chip bags, dishwashers loaded incorrectly, toilet paper not put on the roll....these are the things that leave you feeling like you may want to strangle one another.

For the record, my husband always puts the toilet paper on the roll.

So what’s the trick for keeping the magic in your relationship? Making small switches.  Chips can be eaten out of a bowl just as easily as a chip bag.  Voila!  The rustling is taken care of and you’re left snuggling with your guy instead of having visions of strangling him.

Don’t believe me?  Let me explain how switching phones basically saved my marriage.

My husband is a frugal guy and I’m okay with that *mostly*.

But a few years ago, he bought some cordless phones for our house.  I’m not going to name the brand but let’s just say if you were sitting around the table talking about phones, it’s not a brand that would come up – at all. The set came with three phones and three chargers. Perfect! One phone for my office, one for the kitchen and one for our family room.  We don’t have a particularly large house but being three stories tall, it’s more vertical than horizontal. 

The first inkling I had that the phones may be troublesome began when I would try to use the handset on the third floor. As soon as I entered my bedroom, the phone would start making a noise like the battery was dying and any call I was on would be dropped.

It took me awhile to figure out that the phone wasn’t coincidentally running out of batteries whenever I entered my room and that in fact, the phone was too far away from the charger.  One floor below.  

Approximately 25 feet away. 

I measured.

Thankfully I’m not a fussy person.  Can’t use the phone in my bedroom?  No problem. 

No, the problems began when the batteries would die about 15 minutes into a conversation.  No matter how long the phone had been charging.  See how I bolded that sentence to convey my frustration?


And while most people don’t talk on the phone for more than 15 minutes at a time, I work from home so my whole day consists of talking on the phone for more than 15 minutes at a time.  Are you following me here? 

Do you have any idea how many times (a) Erica thought I’d hung up on her or (b) how often I would have to say to someone “My phone is dying, let me go grab another one and call you right back”.

If I had to take a guess I’d say about 50 kajillion.

But I kept plugging away with my battery dying phones, becoming more and more resentful of my *frugal* husband.  The final straw came the day my son was sick and suddenly broke out in hives.  I didn’t want to panic and rush him to the emergency room, instead I called our local Tele-health system where I was put on hold until a nurse was available. 

Twenty minutes later, Son No. 2’s face was now covered in welts and my phone started to die.  I was racing down the stairs to try and do the big switch to an un-dead phone when the nurse came on.  All hope was lost.

When my husband came home that night to a sick child covered in hives and a wife at the end of her rope, he apparently made a decision in his head.

He would buy a new set of phones.

A week later, fully installed, was a new set of awesome phones that didn’t die at the blink of an eye.  It not only changed my communication at home during the day business-wise, it made me want to communicate with him more.  So I now call him at work more frequently.

And nobody is ever hung up on.

Unless it's on purpose.

It’s the little switches that make a big difference.

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