Even if you have only been married for two months or two years, you know the truth already, having a happy marriage requires both partners to make it work. Not two people pulling in different directions. It’s team work or no work at all. Even with all of that hard work being talked about, all you need to do is sit down with a single lady or guy and you hear them, go on and on about how they would want their spouse to be this or that, how he or she should be able to do one thing and not the other. Talking about building castles in the air.
The latest craze I see is the cartoon images of loving couples with their family and I see my young cousins use them as DPs and share them on social media and honestly, I’m just watching all of them with my corner eyes. They mostly think that getting to that stage in a relationship is like magic, snap your finger and voila! It’s here. That couldn’t be far from the truth.
And if you see, real couples, (not cartoons), who are truly happy, then know that it took them loads of work to get to where they were. Don’t be deceived, they have been through the muck in their own way. We have all had our “hard times.” They will look different, because our marriages are different, our partners are different; but I assure you that we have all been through our own rocky stretches on the path to marital bliss and some are going through it right now.
Because here’s the thing that no one tells you: Marriage is really hard. It will be painful at times. And do you know what else they don’t tell you? It’s fine that marriage is hard and painful sometimes, because it’s SO worth it. Don’t worry, you will be fine. Your marriage will one day be that image in your mind. Today, I share with you 8 years worth of marriage realities, no one and none of those cartoons tell you.
- You will fight
Just take a poll amongst couples around you. Ask them, when they had their first argument after marriage and you will be surprised, at how soon, the bubble burst for them. The truth is, you will fight about big things and little things and things you don’t even care about. You will fight about where to shop, how much to spend, about whether your son needs a haircut, or your daughter’s hair needs to be plaited. Don’t even go near the subject matter of your extended families, that could cause another world war. There will be times of silent treatment, sometimes for days, should one of you get on the nerves of the other is the most painful way possible.
His jokes will drive you crazy. Her laughter will irritate you at times, but put it all down to having to spend so much time with one human being all the time. And that alone can instigate fights, so get prepared. You might call it quarrels, screaming matches, misunderstandings, whatever, just know, it will come.
- There will be score keeping
It’s fine and okay to preach forgiveness, it’s even finer to practice it, but it does not mean that whatever offence that was committed has been forgotten. My friends, you will tally consciously or unconsciously. When you hear, “That was what you did seven years ago” know that the score has just been even or about to be.
You will keep a score card on who sleeps more, who handles the remote control, who spends more time with the kids and who spends more hours working at a job that pays the bills and puts food on the table. Oh, you will keep score of even inconsequential things like, the position of the toilet seat, up or down.
- It’s okay that marriage is hard, because, it’s worth it.
Even with the fighting, the anger, the loss of attraction at times, and the difficult times, marriage is pretty great. The truth is some of the most amazing things in life; marriage and parenting among them are really hard work and honestly, you wouldn’t want them any other way.
Marriage is not all heart-shapes, lovey -dovey, and huge rocks. Marriage is not strolling by the light of the moon and thereafter, have amazing sex to rival porn stars. And marriage is definitely not one of those social media PDAs. No
Marriage is hard work, it is loving even when you don’t feel like it. Marriage is about the difficult times now and then. Because when you share your life with someone else; raising a family, building careers, paying bills and so much more, it’s impossible not to rub each other the wrong way at times or even most of the time.
But you will get through it. You will remember that you play for the same team. You will fight, and then you will forgive, you might not forget. You will compromise. You will get help, even professional help, if you need to. You will take a deep breath, lay into each other off, and then laugh at yourselves.
So fear not, you are not alone if you find yourself going through this and if you are not married yet, there is no need to be scared, just keep the image of the loving couple in mind, when you fight, so you know why you’re fighting. Marriage is hard for everyone now and then. And making it through those rough stretches might even make your marriage better. Because even though marriage has it’s hard and rough days, marriage is also knowing you have someone on your side who will hold an umbrella over you when the rain comes.
That should give a balanced view of what a marriage is. No more lies, no more fancy images, that does not show the hard work that goes into the image, shown to the world. The work makes the marriage.
Cheers to all sides of marriage.
Kristine is a member of The Lovelint team. She is a down to earth person, who says it as it is. Having given relationship advice for years in a national daily, she has found out that fear is one of the main reasons holding people back from enjoying a healthy, happy relationship. She is married with kids and is willing to listen to you and help as much as you let her to.