In case you missed it, I’ve started a list about things I thought about marriage before I was married. I posted the first five HERE and the second five HERE. I’m including thoughts of my own, and a few from other married bloggers. Here’s the third part of the list.
Before I got married I thought that…
11. Married people forget about their single friends
I was 28-years-old when I got married so I had “lost” a lot of friends to marriage. Now, looking back, I wish I wouldn’t have given up on those friendships so easily. I can see now how marriage demands emotional time and energy, and my friends probably needed more space (especially in their first year) than they did when they were single.
It makes sense why the came “out” with a group less often, and always wanted to hang out at home.
But I also know as a married woman how much I need my single friends. They keep me grounded and give me valuable perspective. I am a better wife, and a better woman, when I have them. It isn’t always easy to maintain those relationships but I wish I would have tried harder.
12. Marriage makes you feel less insecure
Okay, this one is half true. Marriage does help you to get over your insecurities, but it doesn’t do that through constant affirmation, a stroking of ego and fulfillment of all felt needs (at least not my marriage). For me, it has done so by making my insecurities so pronounced that I couldn’t possibly ignore them anymore. It’s like the re-setting of a bone, or a needle in a wound to stitch it up.
It is healing, but it might hurt worse than it did before. It might have to get worse before it gets better.
13. Premarital sex ruins your sex life forever
I wrote the other day that sex before marriage has consequences in marriage, and I stand by that. In fact, I think I’ll write a whole post talking more honestly about how it has impacted me (my husband and I both had sex before of marriage, just not with each other). But the whole “premarital sex will ruin your sex life” advice made my wedding night terrifying.
I was worried our sex life was going to be doomed forever.
Guess what? It wasn’t.
It is more work than I expected it to be, and takes even more communication than I anticipated, but if you’re willing to put in the effort, sex can be really good and still get better and better.
14. Good Christians don’t question their marriages
Everyone says, “when you know, you know” when it comes to your spouse and I had this experience when I met Darrell. But I would be lying if I said there haven’t been moments, during our engagement, and the early weeks of our marriage where I would accidentally wonder: “This is really hard. Harder than I expected. Did I marry the wrong guy?”
Then, the other day I was having a conversation with my friend Nicole and she told me: “I think that’s normal.”
I guess it’s normal to wonder if marriage was a mistake, especially when we live in a culture that tells us God has “one” person out there we’re supposed to marry, and that marriage is all roses and lilies all the time. I’m so much happier when I realize that God doesn’t have one destination (one person, one school, one city, one husband) in mind for me.
He just wants to be with me on my journey.
15. I had to be a Suzie Homemaker (From Elora Nicole)
Before I was married I thought I had to fit into this role of Suzie Homemaker. Not that I don’t appreciate women who actually enjoy home-making in the typical sense, I just feared I’d burn every single dinner and we’d live off of box macaroni and cheese and pigs in the blanket. It wasn’t until after I got married that I realized my husband really loves to cook and I don’t mind cleaning up after him. We faced a few questions at first when family members would ask what I was making for dinner and I would laugh and say, “oh that’s Russ’ job.” A few even corrected me, telling me it was my job as the wife to care for my husband – since “he’s so stressed out when he gets off work he needs to relax.”
We knew what worked best for us. Now, I’m so glad we stuck to our instincts. A few years ago, Russ followed through with a distant dream and completed his education as a French chef. It seems so simple – fitting into the perceptions of society. I just can’t imagine where we would be right now had we convinced ourselves everyone else was right even when we knew it was wrong for us.
Question: What about you? What expectations do you (or did you) have for marriage? Are you married or single?