What I Wish Someone Would Have Told Me About My First Year of Marriage

May 15, 2019

When two people get married, there’s so much emphasis on the wedding, the honeymoon, and the happily ever after. Often times, especially in today’s society, we lift up marriage with this expectation that it is supposed to be easy. We fall in love, get married, have babies, and live happily ever after. What no one tells you, is what the in between your happily ever after looks like, and let me tell you, it isn’t always easy.

 

Before I got married, I had my own notions of what I thought it would be. I thought it would consist of doing grown-up things like… Picking out curtains for your nice home. Having fine china. Having “grown-up” dinners with other married couples. Eventually having a few kids, a couple pets. In many ways, it is. But it is also messy, with misunderstandings, and constant compromise, with a frequent feeling of fatigue and a sense of obligation to fulfill your duty as a partner and a parent. Marriage is like having someone hold a mirror up to your face, every day for the rest of your life. Sometimes, you’ll like what you see. Sometimes you won’t. It won’t always be easy, but it can be the best thing that has ever happened to you.

For those of you who have just gotten married, are thinking of tying the knot, or have been married for years, here’s a list of things you may think sometime during your first year together. And guess what? I’m here to tell you that it’s ok to think them. If anything, I hope you get a good laugh out of it. Because if there is anything you need in a good marriage, it’s a sense of humor.

You’re Not Alone {In Your First Year of Marriage} If You…

…miss having your own bed

…feel like it is an “adjustment period”

…become homebodies every weekend

…worry if he finds you annoying

…argue about money

…get annoyed with his habits… ones you never noticed before.

…fall asleep mad

…wish you had more money

…feel like everyone who told you the first year was the hardest was totally WRONG.

…feel like everyone who told you the first year was the hardest was totally RIGHT.

 

 

Let me tell you, I am sure that this list could go on and on and on. Maybe it is JUST me, but I have come to learn, that if I am feeling a certain way about something, odds are someone else out there is too.

 

Why Marriage Isn’t for the Faint of Heart

Back to that marriage not being all happy ever after. My husband and I have known each other for nearly 10 years, been together for five years, and just celebrated our first wedding anniversary in April. One thing I would say is to first, be friends with you spouse. Yes, love them, you at one point I assume fell head over heels, otherwise, when they asked you to marry them, you would have ran for the hills. I say be your spouse’s friend, because you will confide in them, you will fight with them, and aside from lovers, you will most definitely seek their friendship and companionship.

 

This first year of marriage Matt and I have definitely tested each other’s patience, had a lot of disagreements, learned each other’s ticks…. but we have also grown so much closer. Honestly, there were days I woke up, so hurt, not knowing how to communicate with him, or what I was telling him was not getting through to him. Honestly, days I was wondering who I married because he seemed so different than the man I fell in love with. But that is thing…In marriage, you change. You both grow, and you have to learn to grow together. Not only that, but I was previously married, and have a child from that marriage, my first born, and we had to not only adjust to being newly weds, but taking a HUGE step into him being a step-father to whom we call our son. <3

 

At first, our disagreements were more intense, we fought a lot more often, and since he works out of town often for work, it is like we never got any resolve. I do not remember what the breaking point was, but I remember feeling the shift in our marriage. From tense, to smooth. The pressure seemed alleviated, and instead of the world versus us and us versus each other, we started tackling things as a team… It became us versus the world. With finances, parenting, even disagreements we began having. I remember being very unhappy at points, to where I was moved to tears, crying after the kids went to bed that I missed my husband, wondering if he really loved me, if I was annoying him (sounds familiar? ha. I also blame the pregnancy hormones ;))

 

I tell Matt all the time now, that I know we have a lot to conquer together, and we will have other rough seasons in life, but the important thing we have learned is that we are a team, and we do this together. Now, we have been enjoying this sweet time with our sweet family of ours. Honestly, closer than ever, so much so I catch myself grinning throughout the day, thinking of just how lucky I am to be married to my best friend. The thing is, in today’s culture, we are constantly chasing “happiness.” The second we aren’t happy with something or someone, we seem to toss them to the curb*. We get so wrapped up in social media and the unrealistic pressures of a “perfect” marriage. You have to fight for your marriage. You have to work at it every day. You have to show yourself + your spouse a little grace, and you have to remember that above all, your spouse is your number one. You two chose each other for a reason.

*Now please, if you are in an emotionally abusive or physically abusive relationship, please LEAVE and get your littles to safety, because you do not deserve that, and you do not need to get yourself or your littles hurt. Get out, get help, and do not look back! But there is a difference between being temporarily unhappy versus being in an abusive relationship.

 

Not nice have I thought about leaving my husband’s side because of an unhappy time! Why, because I love that man with my whole heart. The BEST daddy to our littles, and a supportive man. We had to learn to grow together, learn what was important to one another, and learn to make sacrifices and compromises for one another. And man, was each step worth it to be better than we ever have been, and where we are today. Now I am sure you are wondering how being married for one year how could I give you any advice? Well, I am one year in… I am happy, very happy with my marriage (kind of like on the moon obnoxiously happy, want to shout from the rooftops how much I love my man because he has been the real MVP). And the key here, things I wish I would have been told before my first year, so here it goes!

What I Wish Someone Would Have Told Me About My First Year of Marriage

  1. You will disagree. Call it a disagreement, argument, whatever you have it, but you have just made a SERIOUS commitment to someone. Whether you have lived together or not, you will be learning a lot about this person as you both have a lifetime essentially before you two were married. This is okay! But you have to learn how to communicate, and know when to compromise. As an extremely hardheaded woman, I struggled with this.
  2. It isn’t all rainbows + butterflies. I have been paying my own bills since I was 15, and had my first apartment at 16, but let me tell you, it is totally different when you are sharing a space with someone, deciding how money is going to be spent, who will pay for what, not to mention if you want children, whose insurance will they go on, etc.
  3. You do not have to share a bank account. You can keep your money separate. Marriage is like taking a slice of bread with peanut butter and another slice of bread with glob of jelly + just slamming them together. Yes, slamming them. Because if you did that, there would be shit everywhere! But, after you clean up your mess, it is delicious. You will be cleaning up for a while. Learning how the hell you will get the jelly on the ceiling, or why the heck your partner likes jelly on their peanut butter sandwich on the first place. It is okay to ease into that, and if you discuss it, separate bank accounts are totally okay! Joint ones are too, but again communication!!
  4. Communication. Communication. COMMUNICATION. You two have to talk. The more you talk, the closer you will grow. Not just talking to talk, or get your point across. But talking to understand one another. Sometimes you just have to get it out, and let it sit.
  5. It is okay to go to bed angry, but never go to bed without a goodnight kiss. Sometimes you just need a good night’s sleep to get a clear head, and I know when you are tired, you get cranky, and that tends to make disagreements worse + nobody wins. So, sometimes, there is just need to sleep it off, and normally in the morning things are much better than if you kept at it all night. BUT, no matter what I ALWAYS kiss my husband goodnight, even if we just had a disagreement. Why? Because I love that man to death, and God forbid something ever happen to him, I am kissing my husband good night, and he needs to know I still love him. He also has learned just how important this is to me as well.
  6. Date Your Spouse. So you get married, go on your honeymoon, then pay bill and never go out?… You used to pursue one another, keep that alive. It gets so easy to get wrapped up in the routine, the responsibility. Don’t stop having fun together, and always date one another. Even if you are on a budget, or have kiddos, there are plenty of budget friendly ways to have fun, and ways to have gun when you have kids!
  7. Have fun! Remember to have fun, don’t be too serious, and allow yourself to enjoy the little things! 🙂

 

To Matthew, if find yourself stumbling onto my page… I love you honey bear. Thank you for being the most supportive, loving, and hardworking man. I am forever grateful and cannot wait for many more years together. <3

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