Marriage is always Sunshine and Rainbows. Duh.

One of my Weddingbee friends wrote yesterday about realizing how damn hard marriage is, and that post went up around the same time other people were discussing how marriage changes your relationship.  Turtle and I were sitting on the couch together, my eyes glued to the screen, my mind deep in thought, so I turned to her and said, “What do you think has changed the most since we got married?”

Trust her to be in the same mental place I am, right?  Um, no, wrong.  She looked at the dog at our feet and the cats, one on either end of the couch, and then at me: “Uh, our animals started getting along better?”

true love/mild tolerance

For us, so far, marriage hasn’t been Super Especially Hard, or at least not harder than we expected.  But I wonder how much of this is because we sort of expected marriage to be really hard.  Several months before we got married, someone on APW (I can’t find the exact post) mentioned that she’s been told marriage isn’t about getting through hard days or hard weeks – marriage can be about getting through hard years.  And at our premarital counseling stuff, our minister sat across from us and laughed and said, “Sometimes you really just don’t even like each other.” She laughed like, you know, she knew what she was talking about, like she’d been there.  “Sometimes,” she said, “You just want your mom.”

moms will help you fight the world, if you need them to.

And then the other part of it is that so much of what sealed our decision to get married was the Hard Stuff.  It was that Turtle could handle my sitting in the kitchen, just sobbing and not being able to stop; it was that I could handle her losing her job and subsequent depression.  It was that we figured out how to talk about the really big stuff or how to say “we need to talk about the really big stuff.”

The third part of it that I’m toying with is that there has also been so much other life stuff happening; if we needed something to be angry or anxious or stressed out about, let’s try job stuff or family stuff or sick and/or neurotic animal stuff.  I think that maybe all of this circumstantial difficulty has given us the option of falling apart or deciding How Our Marriage Is Going To Work.

The answer, again, is goats. Goats help our marriage work. (honey, can I get a goat?)

Guys, I am super duper for sure NOT saying we have it all worked out.  I am not saying we have answers or that our marriage is winning (though, ahem, it is winning for us!).  I am just thinking about why it hasn’t been as hard for us as other people (or as easy for us as some other people).  It sure hasn’t been sunshine and roses… but instead of waking up and being (as we saw on Mad Men yesterday) all, “WOW, someone is making me dinner and it will be waiting for me when I get home! Marriage is awesome!” we’re all, “Wow, this hard thing is happening but there are arms to hold me and ears to listen when I get home because that’s what it means for us that we are married.”  That, and also we are silly a lot.  There is a lot of giggling.

Has marriage been harder than you expected? Easier?  Are you expecting sunshine and roses or big changes or no changes at all? Who had a honeymoon period beyond their honeymoon? ANSWER ALL MY QUESTIONS.  Just kidding, you can answer just four of them.

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5 Comments

Filed under Marriage/Wedding/Engagement

5 responses to “Marriage is always Sunshine and Rainbows. Duh.

  1. vadoporroesq

    Marriage has been really really hard. I can’t find a job and I’m scared and I feel worthless and I’m a lousy housewife. My husband loves me and he wants me to not feel scared and worthless but he’s not great at communication and he still wants me to pick up my socks from the bedroom floor. I feel like I ruined our lives by going to law school and then wanting to be married as soon as I graduated.
    Also, getting married and going on our honeymoon was an adventure. Now, we are adventureless. It’s a little weird. I’m looking for our next adventure/challenge and now I get why so many people get babies, pets, or start their own businesses.

    • What an interesting idea of being adventureless. This is something I’ve been struggling with a little bit in life but not in our marriage. I’ve been trying to find my own adventures (volunteering, trying to get my new website up and running, job apps, etc) which has actually made it more exciting to finally see my wife at the end of the day.

      Sorry you are having such a hard time 😦 It sounds like a normal reaction to all of the big things ending suddenly (school, wedding planning). It’s tough being the unemployed one and feeling like, “Why do I always have to be the one to clean up the messes I made? How come you never clean up the messes?” Yes, I say that routinely, which is not to say I think it’s reasonable… Good luck! You’re not alone in this weird space.

  2. I think having realistic expectations helps a marriage. Knowing that everything will not be sunshine and roses, makes the not-so-great parts seem not so bad. You think, well, there will be worse things than this — we can get through this. The more you handle the less than sunshine stuff, the easier the hard stuff gets. I mean, it’s never flat out easy, but easier than it would be for people who think that marriage IS sunshine and rainbows all the time.

  3. Meg’s mom (or was it her grandmother?) said that: there are good years and there are bad years.

    My partner and I expected it be hard, too, and like you said, maybe that’s why it hasn’t so much been. How convenient! We didn’t expect big changes, and we didn’t get them. And that’s ok, obviously. We also didn’t really expect/get a “honeymoon period” after the actual honeymoon (and don’t mind–we were happy before & we’re good now).

    “That, and also we are silly a lot. There is a lot of giggling.” We are too, and I think that for the kind of people we are, it helps a lot! Before we moved in together (4 years ago), my (now) husband & I were sitting at his parents’ dining room table just giggling & chatting together after lunch one day. His mom came up and said “Enjoy it now; soon the laughter will end!” It was totally a “You’ll seeee” moment… and he & I have since said “Hey look! The laughter hasn’t ended! Amazing!” (just between the two of us, of course) every so often, just to remind ourselves that we’re doing ok.

  4. Svannah

    The first six months of my marriage, we spent in two different countries. having an ocean and time zones keeping you apart makes everything hard. But we worked through it. When I finally wa able to come home for good…I thought it would get easier, but i was kidding myself. It stayed hard. It still is hard but we have found a way to work through it to make it better for the both of us! 🙂

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