7 Marriage Myths and the Truths No One Talks About

While I am home snuggling our new little baby {photos to come, we promise} I’ve asked Maggie Reyes to help out here at #staymarried once more. I just love her fresh and honest approach. I hope you do, too…

7 Marriage Myths and the Truths No One Talks About - #staymarried

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Hey #staymarried Readers! Great to be here again while Michelle is on blogternity leave. (Yes, she invited me here because I love making up words and adding a bit of silliness to my serious love of helping all of us #staymarried.)

When Michelle and I were discussing blog topics, one of my favorite suggestions she made was to discuss the modern myths of marriage.

Here are 7 Marriage Myths that rile me up and the truths that can set marriages free from mythical expectations and move them into strong relationship territory instead. The reason I get so riled up about myths is that believing them strips us of our power to do something about them.

The only way I know to conquer a myth is to acknowledge it. By bringing it into your awareness, you now have the power to do something about it.

Please think about that as you read these. If any one of them rings true for you, just notice what it brings up. Be with the feeling. Don’t try to suppress it or ignore it, just be with it. If it’s a painful feeling, put your hand on your heart and take a deep breath.

Know that we are cheering you on. And know that the feeling will pass. Read through the whole list and then come back to this sentence to check out all the resources the team at #staymarried has just for you.

The first myth comes from a fabulous book I read just before I got married, Lies at the Altar: The Truth About Great Marriages by Dr. Robin Smith.

Myth 1 – Marriage magically changes people for the better.

TRUTH – The person at the altar will be the person at the breakfast table.

The only magic in marriage is the magic we put into it every day. The little kisses, happy surprises and night time cuddles that make us smile. Expect your honey to be exactly the same as before the wedding and you may save yourself mountains of disappointment.

Myth 2 – Once we are married, it will all work out.

TRUTH – Marriage is something you create every day.

Marriage will not erase your debt, make your cranky family member nicer, or get you a raise. Things work out because we work at them. Period.

Myth 3 – He loves me, so he should know what I want without me saying a word or communicating in any way.

TRUTH: No matter how much he loves you, he is not a mind reader. Neither are you. Use your words.

Michelle & Tony’s “To Love is to Listen” post is just about everything I would want to say on this topic. Finish reading this first, then read that one. Print out the pin and put it on your refrigerator. Yes, this one.

Myth 4 – Marriage will make me feel complete.

TRUTH: At best, marriage will make you more of who you are.

Marriage is a like an art studio, it’s a space to create your life. It is a relationship, not a mechanic. Marriage is not going to fix you because you are not broken.

The only person who can complete you is you. The gift in taking responsibility for your life and your choices is that you can make a different a choice at any moment and move towards love.

Myth 5 – She didn’t do x. He did y. It means he doesn’t love me. It means she doesn’t care.

TRUTH: We create meaning and we can re-create it.

If you don’t know what something means, ask. Don’t invent. Let me repeat that. If you don’t know what something means, ask. Don’t imagine terrible stories in your head, ask. Don’t make up stories about the past and the future, ask. Don’t cause yourself and your partner profound pain, ask. Got that? Good.

Myth 6 – If my wedding is perfect, my marriage will be perfect.

TRUTH: The purpose of the wedding is the marriage.

Spending 30 thousand dollars on flowers is not going to make your relationship any better; it is just going to buy you really expensive flowers. I so deeply love beautiful, soulful, joy-filled weddings, but it makes me sad when people think it must look perfect on the outside to be truly wonderful on the inside. That’s the biggest lie ever. It’s how you treat each other every day that matters. Every single day. Not one special day. Everyday.

Myth 7 – We know how to communicate, we don’t need to practice.

TRUTH – Good communication is learned by being intentional over time.

Learning to communicate clearly with empathy and practicing active listening is good for every single relationship in your life, especially your marriage. I should change this truth to say, “You think you know how to communicate, then you get married.” <insert winky face here>

Learn your spouse’s love language. Practice listening with love every day. Practice speaking with love every day. You don’t have to do it perfectly; all you have to do is practice. That’s enough. I promise.

 

Is there a modern marriage myth you have been hearing that you want to bust? Please share in the comments. Then go read “To Love is to Listen.” You can thank me later. ;-)

 

Maggie-Reyes on #staymarriedMaggie Reyes is a Life Coach, Writer + the Founder of ModernMarried.com. Her romantic-yet-practical approach to wedded bliss has been featured on Project Happily Ever After, Daybreak USA, Cristina XMRadio, The Happy Wives Club and now the #staymarried Blog. Woo-hoo! When she’s not writing, working or creating pins for her fabulous Facebook Community, you can find her cuddling with her hubby, reading a romance novel or embracing how the words “over-achiever” and “TV Junkie” can still go in the same sentence, to describe the same person. Learn how to love like a newlywed no matter how long you have been married at www.ModernMarried.com.

 

New to #staymarried? Welcome! Check out why we started this blog and my first entry to get a little background.

Thanks for stopping by!

~ Michelle

Title photograph credit: http://www.jennieandrewsphoto.com/


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5 responses

  • Great list. One of my pet peeves is the myth that “Love is all you need!” Marriage takes so much work and effort. It;s kind of surprising to me that people have bought into the myth that love conquers all. Marriage is just like any other significant relationship that you have; with so much more at stake. I have had knock down drag out fights with my best friend and my mother, two of my favorite people on earth. What do you do when that happens? You don’t just walk away. At least, not forever. Now the dynamics of every relationship are different and I’m not of the belief that divorce is all wrong, all the time. But people make this lifelong commitment expecting it to be easy or at the very least, expecting it to be easier than it is. Love #staymarried and Michelle is my shero. Congrats on the new baby!

  • A myth I see perpetuated all the time (especially in church circles) is that pre-marriage purity will lead to automatically blissful sex lives. I’m not disputing the value of purity at all, but I would submit that the truth is sex is a communication/expression of love that must be practiced, explored, cultivated, discussed, revised….it’s an expression of marriage, and we learn marriage / create our marriage by doing.

  • Totally agree with both comments. Myths like these get me all riled up because of the suffering caused when people believe them and think they are true. They start looking for what’s wrong with themselves or their partner just because things aren’t like this mythical magical experience we have built up in our minds. So gratetful to Tony and Michelle for the moving the conversation about marriage forward in such a deep, authentic and soulful way. And so proud to be a guest during this beautiful baby time! XO

  • Knowing me, my husband send me your blog, knowing I would love it. We have been married for a little over a year and I always keep talking about having high standards for our marriage. I want us to work on it constantly… luckily my husband is my balance ;-) But… marriages crash left and right and i want us to work hard to keep it good, to grow and be healthy. I love having found this. I’ll be back!

  • Loved these! I’m glad that someone “debunked” these myths! People will sometimes go along with them, even though they are senseless! :/

    Here’s a myth I personally despise regarding relationship (somewhat): No matter who you marry, if it’s a male, he cannot possibly be 100% monogamous/faithful to you. Why? Because at the very least he’ll be committing ‘visual adultery.’ This may in fact be true for many men out there, but I think most of us forget that not all men are uncontrollable sex monsters who drool at every female the way a coyote does a dead carcass. I mean really?! Can we not give men a little credit, here? They aren’t *that* bad, and sometimes, some of them aren’t like that at all! IT IS possible to have a male spouse love you to the point of being faithful and monogamous in every way. It has been said like this “I only have eyes for you,” and I’ve heard couples describe things like feeling as if the opposite sex no longer exists when they’ve found their soul-mate. No, it doesn’t have to be total monogamy if a couple does not want that, but I don’t like that most folks want to tear down other people’s possibility to having that kind of relationship. Ya know? I think it is a myth that women will have to “put up with” that type of thing no matter what. It’s not one of those things you simply either deal with or stay lonely for your entire life.


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