Hi everyone! My name is Alexandra and I’m 26 years old. I was once married but after just 2 years ended up divorced. Some people might say that I couldn’t have made any conclusions in such a short amount of time. But I don’t think that’s so: I’ve actually learned a lot and have some important things to share.
As a special treat for Bright Side, I want to tell readers about mistakes that I’ve made in my marriage that I don’t recommend. Who knows, maybe it will help to save someone else’s family.
1. People don’t change.
This is a true statement you should carve on the walls of your house to look at every day! People can grow up, adjust to new circumstances or temporarily switch their attention to something else — but if your partner is older than 15, they won’t change. You either accept the person as they are, or you don’t. One of the biggest mistakes I made was hoping that my partner and I would change. This is the mistake you should never, ever make. If you keep noticing that you are looking forward to a moment when things will change, I have to tell you — this is mistake № 1. Spouses are adults with formed personalities, so don’t try to change yourself or make your partner do it for you. Take a deep breath, smile and think about what to do in certain situations. Just talk to each other about the problem at hand. If you really love your partner, their flaws won’t hurt you or drive you crazy. However, if they do drive you crazy, you already know what you should do.
2. Meeting each other halfway is only possible if you do it together.
This is a really important rule that I’m learning to use every day now and I’m sincerely surprised by the results. Here is a simple example: Your husband loves it when your bathroom is clean (there is an extra tube of toothpaste, a clean mirror, a pile of fresh towels, etc). This ensures that he will be in a good mood. And your husband knows that you are happy if your fridge is always full of your favorite foods (for example, orange juice, and yogurt). However, you don’t really love cleaning, and he doesn’t love going to the supermarket. But on your way home, you remember to grab an extra tube of toothpaste and have enough time to wash the towels. He also has time to stop by a supermarket because he saw you were running out of orange juice in the morning. This is what meeting each other halfway means. But you can only do it together. You can’t count the number of good things you expect your partner to do in return. This is simply a way to express care for each other with little things. It’s a way to build a family life. However, if your bathroom is super clean every morning, but your husband doesn’t buy your juice even when you ask him to, that means that only one person is trying. This does not make a happy marriage.
3. Don’t try to do everything at once.
Just because you can do a lot of things, doesn’t mean you have to do them. Don’t deny your husband a chance to open a can, carry heavy bags, change light bulbs and so on. We all can do these things — sometimes better than men can — but the questions here is “why do them”? My problem is, I always know how to do something better, so I always try to control everything. This is a bad thing. This relaxes men and they don’t need to be strong and powerful. But don’t we want to be with a strong and powerful man? The ability to let someone do something for you is the most important skill when it comes to raising a family (at least I think so). Firstly, divide up the house chores: someone changes light bulbs, someone takes out the trash, and someone makes breakfast and loads the washing machine. Secondly, don’t give advice and offer help unless you are asked to. Learn to enjoy giving up control and letting a man do work as well. Someday you will find yourself on a beach relaxing and both you and your partner will be grateful for the hard work you’ve put into your marriage.
The following proves a really important point! As a super-talkative person, I think that the worst punishment is silence. After big fights, I stopped talking and waited for my husband to make the first step. This is because I assumed I would be asked why I was silent. This is wrong! No matter how offended you are, and no matter how obvious you think the reason behind your anger is, take a deep breath and tell your partner what’s bothering you. There is nothing more important than this: don’t be silent! Yes, men think differently. Thousands of psychologists keep telling us about this — it’s even explained in classic literature — but for some reason, our internal voice tells us the opposite. “How can this not be clear? How can you not know why I am upset?! It is so OBVIOUS!” Unfortunately, this way of thinking is wrong. Nothing is as obvious as we think it is. I’ve had so many instances where the reason behind my silence was misinterpreted by others. Silence is not a solution, it only makes things worse. There is only one way out of this: sit down and talk! It shouldn’t be a monologue or an overdramatic explanation. Just use your common sense and explain your feelings. By the way, during calm conversations, you might realize that the reason you were upset was due to their inability to understand your deep feelings or your problem was because of hormones, bad weather, work, and so on. Eventually, you will see the entire picture. Either way, talk to each other and don’t be silent. There’s nothing better than talking things through.
4. Silence is not helpful.
5. Emotions can destroy everything.
Do you feel like you’re about to explode? There is a secret that will help you relax. Take a deep breath, count to 10 and then talk. Here, it’s very important to highlight how long the counting should be. Before you get emotional and say a lot of things you will regret, count to 10. The extra 10 seconds will allow your anger (that doesn’t let you think clearly) to go away and see the person you love in front of you. These 10 seconds will give you time to find the necessary words to express your thoughts. 10 seconds are really helpful. It can help you realize you may have misunderstood something because you missed a word or heard it wrong. Learn to control your emotions. Unlike a concert arena, your home is not a place for screaming and accusations. Many fights could have been avoided if I had used this rule way earlier.
6. There is no such thing as too much love.
The person you are with deserves a lot of love because unlike most people, they see you at your worst but love you regardless. Love can be expressed in different ways including touching, words of support, making plans together, understanding each other, and so on. But it’s very important not to hide this love, but rather, to share it, and express it the best way you can. Love gives a never-ending source of energy, strength, and confidence to you and the person you love. My mistake was directing love toward everyone except the person who really needed it.
I don’t have any regrets and I’m grateful for everything that has happened. I don’t think I was the only one who made mistakes. This experience made me a stronger and wiser person. It allowed me to look inside myself and think about the things I’d never thought about before or that had seemed irrelevant. I hope that this article will help someone to look at their relationship from a different angle and avoid the mistakes that I made.
Do you agree with the ideas expressed in this article? Share your opinion in the comment section below!