As you are stepping into the new phase of your life, I pray to God that you get all the happiness you deserve. And, that your marriage turns out to be as beautiful as you have ever imagined.
I couldn’t offer you any course on marriage, but I want to share something really special that might help you in leading a successful marriage in this distracted world.
I am going to share 6 important lessons that I learned about marriage after spending 26 years with your dad.
Looking at the troubles that I went through in my marriage, I feel it would have been easier if my parents would have shared what to expect. There are certain phases in the marriage that are quite normal and even necessary. But, if you are not aware of those phases, you spend years being unnecessarily worried and sad about them.
Hence when you shared your decision of getting married, I promised myself that I will share whatever I can to prepare you to build a loving partnership with your life partner.
Here are 6 things nobody tells us about marriage. It is like a mini-manual that can help you understand what’s normal (and even necessary) for a marriage to be successful.
1. Marriage doesn’t complete you.
Contrary to what Bollywood movies tell you about marriage or try to imply in dialogues like
“Hum Ek Hi Baar Jeete Hain, Ek Hi Baar Marte Hain, Shaadi Bhi Ek Hi Baar Hoti Hai Aur Pyaar Ek Baar Hi Hota Hai”,
a healthy marriage is very different. It consists of two different people partnering together rather than completing each other.
Don’t ever let anyone fool you that you are incomplete without marriage.
Marriage is a child of a husband-wife relation. And if you want to make that child safe and healthy, work on your own liveliness and completeness as a person. Don’t depend on your partner to come and rescue you to live an enriched life.
2. There will be times when you won’t feel attracted to your partner.
The toughest phase in a marriage is when there is a lack of attraction between the couple. There will be a lot of panic at both ends when this happens. We have been taught by our movies that if you are not attracted towards your partner, then you are probably with the wrong person. Sadly, that is not the reality.
When you see a person in many different lights – from well dressed for an event to puking over the toilet seat, the attraction is bound to fluctuate. And, believe me, that is completely normal. Don’t be anxious if you don’t find your partner equally attracted every day.
3. There is nothing called Love forever
As per the movies and love stories – “You meet, fall in love, and live happily ever after.” But, what people don’t talk about is an essential stage: falling out of love. Sometimes, you need to fall out of love to understand what love really is.
There is not even a bit of reality in the phrase – love forever. With times, things change and people change and situations change. The jokes that used to drive you crazy will start irritating you. The discussions that used to sound intellectual will start to sound shallow and boring.
The family drama would hijack the life romance to leave you thinking if you were ever made for this marriage.
That’s simply the way it is when you spend a long time with one person. During that phase, love will feel like an empty garden. And, if you give it proper attention and care, the flowers will start to blossom again.
4. You don’t have to feel love to give it.
Most of us believe that love is only a feeling. And hence, it’s easy to feel confused when the loving feelings fade. At that time, you need to gather all your courage to think it from the long-term perspective – meaning that even if you don’t feel like giving your partner a good night kiss, you do it anyway.
Sometimes, you have to give it before you feel it.
5. The critical lesson that no one talks about – Sex
Mostly, we are offered zero guidance about one of the most complex element of our marriage – sexuality. Whatever we learn is from our friends, internet, romantic novels.
And for the lack of knowledge, we fall into the trap that sex is about security from the spouse or getting rid of insecurities about our own body. Sadly, it is none. It is a sacred act of giving and receiving that leads to the perfect connection between souls.
6. Marriage is work, not a vacation
There are many people who believe that healthy and fulfilling marriage just happens. They couldn’t be more wrong about it. A good and healthy marriage needs a lot of effort. What you witnessed as a kid while growing up might be completely different from what your spouse has witnessed. What that means is that conflicts are bound to happen. It’s important to understand each other’s point of view and take a mutually beneficial decision.
e.g. your dad’s father and mother used to hardly discuss any financial matters. So, your father naturally assumed that he was expected to take all the financial decisions in our life. On the other hand, my parents used to discuss the minutest details about any investments they were considering. So during the early days of our marriage, your father and I had multiple and fights about our money matters.
Marriage is not easy work, but just because it’s work, doesn’t mean you’re with the wrong person. Some moments would be tough and in those moments if you could hold on to each other then no storm will be able to separate you ever.
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