“Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens. Bright copper kettles and warm woollen mittens. Brown paper packages tied up with strings; these are a few” things you don’t get in a marriage. Well, maybe on Valentine’s Day.
The thing is, I’m not a hopeless romantic and I don’t believe in soulmates. And to quote Monica Geller (this is a FRIENDS reference, in case you’re from the Stone Age), I don’t think my husband and I were destined to be together. What I do believe is that we fell in love and we work hard for our relationship.
If you think about it, getting married is weird. You make this decision that affects who you are and how you’re going to live for the next 50 years, and then you get the government involved. Relax, this isn’t a conspiracy theory. It’s just a few truths about being married.
YOUR WEDDING IS THE BEGINNING, NOT YOUR HAPPILY EVER AFTER
Our culture is obsessed with love and weddings. You’ll find TV shows, books, and shops dedicated to it, but you won’t find those things for what happens after the wedding. Because let’s be real. The day-to-day of most married couples is quite boring.
You should be careful of getting too caught up in the wedding day. I’m not saying you should have a bring-your-own-snacks-kind-of-wedding (unless you want to, then it’s cool). But also take the time to ask yourself what your dreams as a couple are after the wedding, and invest your time and money in that too.
YOUR PARTNER IS YOUR LOVER AND YOUR ROOMMATE
Romance and attraction don’t disappear after you get married, but your thoughts will no longer be limited to “Hey, sweet cheeks.” It will also include, “Do you not know how to hang a towel?” or “Your phone is in your hand.”
YOU WILL GO TO BED ANGRY
Some clichés are true, but the worst advice you might try and follow is that you shouldn’t go to bed angry. Even I believed it. Of course, you shouldn’t ignore your problems and let an argument fester, but sometimes, a cooling-off period is just what you need; waking up with level heads.
Science can actually confirm that a night’s rest improves your decision-making skills. This means you and your partner wake up more equipped for problem-solving.
YOUR MARRIAGE WILL NEVER BE EQUAL
You should always try and be the best partner possible. But the reality is, all of us will once in a while be an unnecessary jerk.
One of you will always be carrying the slack because that’s what a relationship is about: to lighten their load when they struggle and to love them unconditionally. The moment you start keeping score of who is doing what, you will keep finding faults in your partner – which means more (unnecessary) fights.
YOU AND YOUR PARTNER NEED ALONE TIME
Being married doesn’t mean you’re attached to the hip. You’re still two, different individuals with different needs. So wanting to have time on your own doesn’t mean you don’t like your partner. It means you’re human and you need some space. Take care of yourself too. Cue another cliché that is actually true, “You can’t pour from an empty cup.”
IT’S FUN, NOT PERFECT
When you get rid of expectations, you will enjoy being married more. But don’t confuse expectations with goals. There is a difference. Expectations are what we make up in our heads, but goals are what you and your partner decide to work towards – together.
The best thing about being married is having someone to share all the good and bad things with. It makes life a little easier and a lot more fun. It might not always be easy, but it’s definitely worth it.