Marriage Myths – Part 1

April 6th, 2012

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During a recent Tuesday evening class, my Marriage and Family Therapy cohort friends and I engaged in a lively debate regarding commonly held myths about marriage.  As I fancy myself an educated, enlightened woman, I was quite surprised to learn that I unconsciously endorse some of the myths that have been proven to poison marriages.  My shock in coming face to face with my own unhelpful beliefs prompts me to use the next ten blog posts to explore the validity (or not) of commonly held marriage myths.  As you read on, I encourage you to search the corners of your own mind, invite your spouse to do the same and discuss together your beliefs about what marriage means.  When you both honestly make the effort to do so, I anticipate that your connection will blossom, your patience for one another will increase, and your love will deepen.  Give it a shot and please let me know how it goes!

Myth #1: If my spouse loves me, he should instinctively know what I want and need to be happy.

Guilty.  By far, this myth enjoys the most safety in the depths of my soul.  After all, what’s a soul mate if I have to coach him all along the way?  As Natasha Bedingfield croons in her hit Soul Mate, “Who doesn’t long for someone to hold that knows how to love you without being told?”  Mindreading feels romantic.  His ability to anticipate my needs seems cosmically connected to the depth of his feelings.  In my case, we’ve been together for over 10 years – if he doesn’t know me by now… haven’t we failed as a couple?

When I make the effort to rise above the chick flick haze, I suppose I can cognitively understand the ridiculousness of my expectation that my husband will 100% anticipate and accommodate my every need.  Consider any major purchase you make – furniture comes with assembly instructions, appliances come with operator manuals, clothing comes with care labels and even groceries require a recipe to transform them into delicious dishes.  If these inanimate objects -that serve just one purpose in life – necessitate specifically written instructions, how much more might a living, breathing, continuously changing relationship benefit from a little verbal help and prompting along the way?

At the end of the day, we all have two choices.  1: keep your spouse guessing and get angry or hurt when he or she fails to give you what you need OR 2: pout for a minute about having to ditch the fantasy, then throw your spouse a bone by telling him or her what you want.  Though I hate to admit it, I anticipate that option 2 will prove to be the quicker route to marital bliss.  I’ll give it a try if you will.  Best of luck to us both!


Full article here: Relationship_Stages_Myths