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13 Myths About Marriage You (Probably) Still Believe

Love has inspired countless stories over the years, which have resonated with us and shaped our expectations of love, romance, and marriage.

And while there are plenty of good reasons you might feel disappointment or frustration in your marriage, it is important to consider the possibility that you may have unrealistic expectations of your marriage.

Today, we are exploring 13 common myths about marriage that you (probably) still believe.

Myths About Marriage

13 Myths About Marriage You (Probably) Still Believe - Chris Massman.gif

1. You Will Not Feel Alone If You Are Married

Overcoming loneliness means you have made a connection with someone else. Yes, you married someone you love and when you two are connected, you feel far from lonely. The problem is that you will not always be able to connect with your spouse.

There may be times when you two are together physically, but emotionally you may be focused on something else, like a big project at work, a death in the family, an upcoming event or any other distraction. Or, you may not be the one who is distracted – your spouse may be.

Although loneliness will occur, it does not have to be a bad thing.

2. Your Partner Will Complete You

You are complete on your own. You do not need another person to complete you. However, your spouse can complement you, and do it well. You can also complement them.

When you feel weak, your partner can lift you up, and vice versa. The two of you together strive to make a great team; individually, you can also bask in your greatness!

3. You Should Always Be in The Mood for Romance

Life stressors make it impossible to always be in the mood for romance. The truth is, for many couples, weeks can go by before they realize they have not been physically intimate.  Continuous emotional intimacy is often a good recipe for deepening physical intimacy in the bedroom. 

Romance needs to be planned in some relationships. Taking the time to plan romance means you care enough about your relationship to make sure your individual life stressors do not interfere with your relationship bond.

4. Your Spouse Should Just Know You Love Them

Love is an action. You can tell your spouse you love them often, but if you do not follow up your words with loving actions, your spouse may not believe you.

Your actions do not have to be big. Instead, little things like making their favorite meal, running a bath, or writing them a love letter can be much more meaningful.

5. If You Fight a Lot, Your Marriage is Going to End

Conflict occurs in all relationships. Anytime you put two different people together in a relationship, there will be times where you disagree; this is to be expected and is perfectly normal.

The way you argue is much more important. There are right ways and wrong ways to argue. The right way includes listening, showing respect, staying calm and working together towards a solution. When you act in these ways, your marriage has a higher possibility to not only endure but to strengthen as well.

6. You Will Become a Different Person

This is not a total myth. You may become a different person once you marry.  You just married someone you love and together, you are embarking on a new journey. You can expect change.

You can still keep all the great traits, hobbies and interests you had before marriage and adapt them to compliment your new lifestyle.

7. Having Children Will Make You a Better Team

When you have a child, you both feel extreme love for the life you created. Just because you share that love, does not mean you will always agree on how to raise your children. In fact, some couples engage in many arguments over children.

Communicate with your spouse prior and after you have children to make sure you are on the same page.  If not, I recommend you seek help from a counselor to help you work through conflicts, look for areas of agreement and find solutions. 

8. You Must Make Up from an Argument Before You Go to Bed

Many couples (and couple’s therapists) will tell you not to go to bed angry. Sometimes it is impossible to fall asleep when you are angry and resolving it will help. However, there are also times when taking a break from an argument and sleeping on it, can bring a better resolution the next day.

9. You Don’t Need Outside Help

There may be times when you need to seek help from an outside professional. You may be facing financial problems and need to seek help from a financial counselor. There may be times when you are having sexual dysfunction and need to seek help from a medical doctor or sex therapist.

Whether infertility, infidelity or even insecurity, there is someone who can help. It is important to reach out for assistance when you need it.

10. Your Lifestyle Must Be the Same as Your Neighbors’ Relationships

If everyone was the same in life, it would be a pretty boring existence. Differences are what make life interesting. Do not compare your relationship to your neighbors’, your parents’, your siblings’, and certainly not to those you see on television.

Have fun creating your own unique relationship; one that is completely special to you and your partner.

11. Marriage Should Not Be So Hard

You have heard it said again and again, marriage takes work. This is a true statement. If it were easy, there would be fewer divorces and less broken families.

A good marriage means that you both make your relationship a priority, and that you both participate in specific activities to strengthen your partnership.

12. Love Is All You Need

Love goes a long way in making a relationship sustainable. Love also needs to be accompanied by commitment, loyalty, respect, safety, financial security, and much more.

Your definition of love must also be defined and positive for both of you.

13. Marriage Should Be 50/50

In an ideal world, marriage would absolutely consist of equal equity between you and your partner. However, the two of you will rarely be at 50 percent, and this is what makes a marriage great.

When your partner is at 30 percent, you can be at 70 percent. When you are functioning at 40 percent due to life stressors, your partner can pick up the other 60 percent.

Conclusion

How many myths did you believe?

Marriage may be one of the oldest institutions in the world, and there is no shortage of opinions regarding what makes it work.

Unfortunately, much of what might be considered conventional wisdom or advice regarding marriage is not based on evidence. Every individual, relationship, and marriage is a little different, so it is in your best interest to pursue insight, guidance, and help designed specifically for your marriage.

To continue to explore these myths as well as demystify any other struggles you and your partner may be challenged with, please do not hesitate to contact me for a 15-minute complementary phone session. 

I look forward to hearing from you.


Chris Massman is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in Agoura Hills, CA. She graduated Phillips Graduate Institute with a Master of Arts in Psychology in 2014 and received her Chemical Dependency Specialty in 2014. Today, she practices Congnitive-behavioral therapy to help individuals, couples, and families identify and overcome a variety of unique challenges.