When it comes to married life there’s no rulebook. In fact, many of us refer to what we saw growing up in our parents functional (or in my case, dysfunctional) relationship and established that as the norm. Uneven distribution of home care, child care, and lack of communication are just scratching the surface of issues that we should try to stray from. While they may not be a “right” way of doing things, I think we can all agree that there are a few things we definitely shouldn’t do. In my four years of marriage, here’s what I’ve learned.
Don’t Compare Your Relationship
Remember when you were 9 and your parents would go on and on about your annoying cousin who got like 100 AR reading points and they said, “why can’t you be more like them?” Remember how angry that made you? Yeah, don’t do that to your spouse. The grass is never greener on the other side and everyone is working through their marriage the same way. In an age of social media, it’s so tempting to feel like you are getting the short end of the stick but remember Instagram is a highlight reel. Do not compare someone’s best moments to your reality.
Be Careful With Oversharing
Sahir and I decided pretty early on that we wouldn’t involve others in the middle of our marital spats. It’s not healthy for our marriage to have anyone else involved, especially not our family members. While it’s ridiculous to say that you should never vent to anyone, practice caution when sharing your frustrations. Have 1-2 trusted friends who understand the ins and outs of married life (usually someone who is in a long-term relationship or married themselves) and will help you work through it instead of just letting you bask in your anger and fuel your fire.
One of my fellow married girlfriends had the absolute best idea and I swear by it now. We met up for lunch and had a full-on vent session and at the end, she insisted that we couldn’t leave until we each said 5 nice things about our husbands. It was the best way to end the afternoon, we felt better and left thinking about all the wonderful things that our husbands do for us.
Doing It All At Once
Here’s the truth: being engaged is fun for like five days or until you start the wedding planning process. In order, Sahir and I got engaged, bought a house, got legally married, planned a wedding, furnished a house and then bought dinner for 300 guests for 3 days. Safe to say it was an expensive year. Doing everything at once causes your bank account and your relationship to take a hit. It’s no secret that financial woes are the leading cause of marital problems and lining them up in advance is not a great look. Be prepared for the mental, physical and financial load of doing this all at once