What to Expect the First Year of Marriage: A Month-by-Month Guide

A Preview of Newlywed Life First 12 Months Together

The first year of marriage can be an exciting, challenging, and rewarding time as you adjust to your new life together as a married couple. While every marriage is unique, there are some common experiences many newlywed couples go through in the first 12 months.

This month-by-month guide will walk you through some of the typical milestones, adjustments, and relationship growth you can expect as you navigate your first year of matrimony.

Month 1: The Honeymoon Phase

The first month of marriage is known as the honeymoon phase. Everything feels exciting, romantic, and blissful. You’ll likely want to spend all your free time with your new spouse, soaking up all the wedded bliss. Get to know each other’s friends and family as a married couple.

Have deeper talks about important topics like finances, future goals, religious beliefs, and parenting views. This helps ensure you’re on the same page.

Month 2: Settling In

In month two, the strong honeymoon emotions start fading. You begin settling into married life and becoming more comfortable with each other. Don’t be surprised if little annoyances pop up. Open, honest communication is key. Settle into routines like making dinner or grocery shopping together.

Discuss responsibilities and Divide up chores in a way that feels fair. Work through any teething issues with patience and compromise.

Month 3: New Roles

During month three, you’ll get used to your new roles and identities as husband and wife. Embrace this transition, as you learn what it means to be a spouse. Have talks about your future as a couple.

Do you want kids? Where do you want to travel together? What are your five year plans? Aligning on major life goals from the start prevents surprises.

Month 4: Growing Comfort

Around month four, you’ll likely feel more comfortable with each other. Traveling together and taking on new hobbies as a couple deepens intimacy. Work on communicating effectively when problems arise.

Don’t let annoyances brew – address issues quickly and lovingly. Share activities you both enjoy, like exercising, volunteering or taking a class together.

Month 5: Becoming a Team

During month five, you really start to gel as a strong team. Set shared relationship goals and work together to achieve them. Check in regularly about happiness – are there any issues lurking under the surface?

Don’t lose sight of your friendship and attraction. Set aside quality time for just the two of you to nurture romance.

Becoming a Team simple married life intimacy deepening

Month 6: Deepening Intimacy

Around month six, intimacy and connection often deepen. You understand each other on a whole new level. Use this growing closeness to share hopes, dreams and vulnerabilities.

Consider renewing your vows or having a recommitment ceremony on your six-month anniversary. Start to seriously discuss future plans like having children or relocating.

Month 7: Keeping Things Fresh

During month seven, you may start to feel restless or bored. Marriages can become stale if you don’t put in continual effort. Try new activities together like salsa dancing lessons or couples cooking classes.

Go on novel dates – an amusement park, wine tasting or hot air ballooning. Inject novelty and fun into your relationship so you don’t lose that spark.

Month 8: Long-term Planning

As you near the end of year one, start mapping out plans for the next 5, 10 or even 20 years! Share your biggest life goals and start putting the steps in place to achieve them.

Do you hope to travel the world together or buy your dream home? Discuss your Bucket list items and make a plan to cross them off. Brainstorm creative ways to continue strengthening your marriage.

Month 9: Excitement for the Future

In month nine, you’ll likely feel closer and more excited about the future than ever. Start seriously discussing goals like having children or buying a house. Look into financial planning for big purchases.

However, be sure to enjoy the present too! Don’t forget to be fully present on special dates or little moments. Continue nurturing intimacy through daily affection.

Month 10: Gratitude & Celebration

As you close in on one year of marriage, spend time feeling grateful for your spouse and relationship. Consider celebrating with a recommitment ceremony or vow renewal on your ten-month anniversary.

Check-in with each other – are there any lingering issues or concerns before you hit the one-year mark? Make sure you’re both still feeling happy and fulfilled.

Month 11: Reflection

In month eleven, reflect on your epic first year of marriage. Think about your favorite memories and biggest milestones. Discuss what you’ve learned and how you’ve grown.

Brainstorm ideas for celebrating your first anniversary in a meaningful way. Honor the past year while also getting excited about the future ahead.

Month 12: First Anniversary!

Congratulations – you made it to one year! Celebrate your big milestone anniversary together. Look back fondly on your wedding day and first year. Share your favorite moments and memories. Exchange thoughtful first-anniversary gifts featuring paper.

Do something special to mark the occasion, like looking over your wedding album or revisiting your honeymoon destination. Cheers to year one down and an amazing future ahead!


The first twelve months of marriage will bring joy, growing pains, challenges, and triumphs. While every couple’s experience is unique, this month-by-month guide outlines some of the common phases and relationship shifts you can anticipate.

With an intentional commitment to teamwork, communication, and intimacy, you can build a healthy and lasting marriage that only grows stronger with time. Buckle up for an amazing ride in year one! Learn here more about about married life and tips.


Q: What is the honeymoon phase and how long does it last?

A: The honeymoon phase is the first few months of marriage when everything feels exciting, romantic, and blissful. This early relationship high usually lasts around 6 months before fading as you settle into married life.

Q: What are some things we should discuss during the first year?

A: Important conversations to have include finances, household responsibilities, future goals like kids or buying a home, religious beliefs, parenting styles, and more. Keep communicating!

Q: How can we keep our marriage strong after the honeymoon phase?

A: Schedule regular date nights, take up new hobbies together, go on romantic getaways, nurture physical and emotional intimacy, laugh often, and continually work on your friendship.

Q: What if we start fighting more after the first few months?

A: Some conflict is normal as you adjust to married life. Learn to fight fair, listen well, compromise, and don’t hold grudges. Seek counseling if you can’t resolve issues.

Q: How should we celebrate our first wedding anniversary?

A: Do something fun like look through your wedding album, revisit your honeymoon spot, or review your vows. Exchange paper gifts to symbolize year one. Share your favorite moments from the first year.

Q: How can we prepare for having children during the first year?

A: Discuss parenting duties, read parenting books, budget for baby expenses, get life insurance, baby-proof your home, and make sure your relationship is solid.

Q: What are some things newlyweds struggle with?

A: Finances, intimacy, chores, family issues, communication problems, alone time, unrealistic expectations, and feeling unprepared for married life.

Q: What should we do if we feel bored after the initial excitement?

A: Plan date nights, take classes together, travel, try new activities, shake up your routine, focus on your friendship, and put effort into the marriage.

Q: How much quality time should we spend together?

A: Aim for at least 1-2 hours a day of dedicated couple time plus a weekly date night. Make your marriage a priority.