I’m curious to know what assumptions single folks have about marriages while they are still single.
For me, I mostly worried about “culture shocks” in marriage.
How different would my life be? Would marriage seem like such a big deal as people say?
What would living with another human from a totally different background be like? Will I be comfortable sharing my bathroom?
How would we handle money? Chores? responsibilities?…
The questions were endless and I just couldn’t wait to see for myself (Actually I could wait *hahaha)
Let’s begin this letter by sharing four (4) changes I encountered as a newly wed.
Would you rather listen to an audio interview where I talk about these things? Click link👇
Your personal space will be compromised. Firstly, in most cases you should share a room and bathroom. It’s quite exciting, it’s like having a roommate who has the permission to infringe on your personal space.
It can also be a breeding ground for misunderstandings. You know what I mean, for example, if someone has a habit of leaving soap lather on the bathroom wall, which the other party finds cringeworthy, or someone hanging an undergarment which just spoils the aesthetics of the bathroom.
What do you do about these little seemingly habits that just irk you? You are waiting for me to tell you what to do? I am no marriage expert, I’m still in my first year but I would tell you what i do.
I talk about it casually because it is casual. I try not to make it such a big deal. I have noticed that prevents me from getting worked up unnecessarily , also it doesn’t feel like I am attacking my partner. Habits don’t die easily.
My mentioning it one time would not cause a drastic change so I lead by example. I simply do what needs to be done and before you know it, my partner would adjust. This is because we subconsciously rub off on each other.
Another side to this is that they can equally rub off on you and it might not be such a big deal anymore.
Please extend grace when correcting your partner, nobody likes to feel like they are being attacked.
This topic is very personal to every couple. It depends on a couple of things, such as; money ideals, values, earning power, needs and priorities.
My partner and I personally decided to literally be one in our finances. Imagine being 100% transparent about your money, being accountable with each other about spending, having shared financial goals.
We use a model I’ve found to really like but I won’t spill the tea just yet because it deserves a whole letter on its own. Just know that in marriage, your biscuit is no longer your biscuit.
Having a whole new family.
Nothing prepared me for this. I mean I have amazing inlaws who are very family oriented and warm but I can’t help but feel like I’m “abandoning” my own family.
As the woman, because you fell in love with a man and want to spend your life with him, you are mandated to “leave” your nuclear family, change your name if you so wish, and obtain new family members.
I mean, you have new parents, new siblings, new cousins, aunties and uncles, you get introduced to new family traditions, and spend special holidays at their homes.
Your new family has expectations of you and there’s that silent pressure to impress. When they come visiting, you want to host properly and basically prove you are a good choice even though there is no competition.
Adjusting to this has not been so easy for me, my in-laws are very easy to love which I’m grateful for, but sometimes I just feel like I have abandoned my mummy (lmao).
How do I deal with this? As much as possible, I try to match energies.
If I catch myself doing something extra for my inlaws that I have taken for granted with my own parents, I immediately adjust. For example, calling my Mum as much as I call my Mother In Law.
I also keep an open mind with learning new family traditions and it has been an interesting ride. I guess it’s easier when you marry someone with a similar cultural and religious background, and if not, you are in for a more interesting ride, take it graciously.
You cannot add weight in peace.
I have gained about 10kg since I got married, to be fair I lost a lot of weight due to wedding planning stress.
There are different myths surrounding the sudden weight gain that torment newlyweds. Some say it is regular sex but they are just being naughty because skinny people engage in premarital sex.
Some other people say it is peace of mind but trust me I am like the most relaxed person, it takes a lot for anything or anybody to aggravate me.
My theory is that you get to eat more when married, you eat more home cooked meals and more junk food because you are lovebirds and you want the sweet things of life. Let us just accept it is bad eating habits.
Anyway, back to my point, with my recent weight gain, womb watchers have not been able to sleep well. I am pretty sure they are so worried I have not delivered. But how can I deliver food?
I constantly have to correct the notion that I am not pregnant with a human but with food. It can get offensive and intrusive but I just casually dismiss it.
This is how society subtly pressures you. Don’t give in, okay? Anyway, I have resumed at the gym because I want to live a healthier life and of course look snatched.
I’m sorry to burst your bubble but especially if you are marrying as virgins, sex is not going to be mind blowing at the beginning. It’s even harder for women.
The biggest shocker for me was that sex is not automatic.
It’s not like the movies portray, the instant attraction, the intense kissing, the ripping off of clothes and the electrifying stimulation. All lies .
Sex is going to take way more than mere attraction. You’d both need to gather information, research, converse, compromise, unlearn and relearn and all these take great patience.
We would talk more about this but the more knowledge you have about sex, the better your sexual experience in marriage.
I would end this letter with an answer to one of my questions in the introduction.
Is Marriage such a drastic life change?
In my opinion and what I have experienced so far, it is actually not. Its like living with a sibling you are sexually involved with. Okay that’s gross.
But I personally think one of the reasons for the fear people have about marriage is how amplified people make it. The sad thing is they amplify the negatives. Almost like you are going into a cage or death trap.
Marriage has made me a better person, I am living my best life with my favorite person and it’s definitely easier being a team than doing life alone.
That will be all for today, I hope you enjoyed reading this.
N:B – This is purely based on my experience and personality, please this is not a yardstick for your relationship but you can learn a thing or two.
You have my love,
Till next time.