You see her standing there. She was waiting to come down the aisle to join you there at the altar and to pledge her undying love for you. In the moment in your mind, you flash forward to what you expect life to be: buying a house, having children, sending them to college and growing old together with grandchildren on your knee. Looking to the present time, you have no career or few prospects, too poor to even pay attention let alone raise a child. Why are you doing this??
The fear that creeps into a man’s mind is not so much that he will not be able to stand the woman he is with, but if he can provide for her adequately or even better. It’s not surprising then that with the reality of marriage, comes the myths of marriage as well. The unfortunate part is that when you buy into the myths, the reality comes to you and throws you for a loop! I have ample amounts of experience in this area due to the fact that I have been through good days and bad with my wife for emerging on 18 years, married for 16. How do we do it? I’ll share a few tips.
Myth: All marriages should be 50-50 sharing of the work
In this day to day life, there are few if any realities where the two mates will bear fifty percent of the work consistently. The expectation that if you give, so too will you automatically receive needs to be met with a measure of reality. There are challenges that will present themselves which will cause the strain on the marriage. Work related stress, personal family obligations and even illnesses can cause that balance to tilt from the 50/50 expectation to even 95/5, 63/27, the numbers can vary. The keys to remember that this imbalance shall too pass, and a normalizing effect will release the burdens. Also that you are there for each other to support each other in all trials, great and small.
Myth: You will have sex every night
The reality of sexual relations over a long term period can indeed happen, but here are the facts. Due to demands in everyday life, you might find those moments of intimate times become fewer and farther between. These issues can come from biological issues as well, since the body is only as strong for some time. The prime culprits of this deficit is the prioritizing of time for others and not for the relationship. The main cure to such a thing is to realize what is it you are marrying for. If you’re looking for a long term sex partner, you could be sorely disappointed. Companionship should the essential premise of the modern marriage, due to our living longer and being healthier. Through companionship, you can find intimacy which in turn can bring some fire back into the relationship. Find a good mate and I’ll show you an awesome pair!
Myth: If my partner is looking at others, they are bored
The problems that modern marriage faces is the belief of fidelity being equal to natural biological urgings. In the times when marriages were looked at as a commodities exchange, the worries of inheritance for the exchange of family and legitimacy to that inheritance, one would worry about the wandering eye. The biological needs that exist in all people are difficult to ignore. The best way to handle these is to be real. Allow your mate the indiscretion with a positive reinforcement of a kiss to let them know you’re interested.
Myth: You’ll never argue
The main reason why I rarely buy my wife flowers is mainly because most of the men in her life who have, usually did something wrong! The idea that a token will erase the issue and stabilize the relationship, is a popular misconception. Naturally, there might be a measure of sincerity in the action but here’s a better solution. If you find time together without the issues of family, job or even bills, you can actually be able to approach the source of the issue through some soul searching as a couple. Perhaps the possibility of taking him or her out to coffee and hanging out, like you did when you were dating, can bring some elements missing through the argument.
Listen, we were all children once. When we didn’t get our way, we argued then. Many of us have argued with parents, siblings and dear friends, but did your love for them disappear? In the case of someone you’re intimate with, that person’s opinions and statements can be hurtful. They could hurt more than anything you have ever imagined. But the long and short of it, does it seem rational that this person could not love you as much? The thing to remember is that your mate knows how to hurt you and how much it hurts. And guess what? So do you. Best solution in situations when things are getting out of hand is a tactic used in boxing: take neutral corners.
One of you has to know and take action when you’re going to say something mean, so that person should restrain from hurting and call a neutral corner. Take a walk or run. Go take a cold shower. Go do anything and let your mate know you have to take off to cool off. Don’t even think about what the argument was about. Oftentimes, you’ll find yourselves calmly discussing what your point was when you come back together.
Myth: Once you get hitched, then you get the itch
The point of this statement comes back to the belief that a person will stray and that there is this defined moment when you get tired of your mate and are looking to escape. Sure, right after marriage things won’t be the same as when you were dating. Not all people stay the same in a relationship. People are and should be dynamic in their lives, but some people are content to be static and not deviate from a good setting. Find what it is that you really need in your marriage. Are you looking to grow? Work with your mate to help you in that quest. Don’t like to rock the boat? Your mate can offer you assurance that they are content with you.
The thing about marriage is that both people have to be willing to work together to complement each others desires and innate natural skill sets. This teambuilding is a process that can be better honed with patience and understanding that both together can overcome any obstacle thrown before you. Yes, in the beginning it will be a challenge due to the fact that you are adjusting to each other and are trying to assert your own independence. The transition from single person to married person is taxing especially in our modern world, where absolutes in domestic relationships have been changed. The force of nature that is marriage can become a life enriching tool that builds a stronger character in a person. Compassion and sharing become part of the daily routine.
So to tell you my friend, standing there at the altar waiting for your bride. The thing you are about to start upon with this woman is a worthwhile effort. She will care for you, as you will her. She will support you as you should her. Not only that, but to mention that gaining a life companion who you will be able to dialogue with and often, disagree with. But that too shall pass. If you both promise to not expect too much of each other and stay present on your journey, then that gold on your finger will not feel as if it were weighted with the myths that scared you a few