You Knew That Before You Got Married, So Why Are You Trippin’?

BY: - 23 Feb '12 | Communication

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“I was like this before we married, so why are you trying to change me now?”

Have you heard these words before? Maybe you have even said them. There are some behaviors we learn about our spouses after we say the vows, and then there are other behaviors that can’t be labeled as surprises. If we are honest with ourselves, we knew our spouses’ issues and idiosyncrasies before we got married. So why do we trip when they are just being themselves? Did we really think marriage was going to change them instantly?

It’s so important for anyone who plans to marry to understand that a marriage certificate doesn’t change a person. Whatever the nagging behavior is, it will not disappear now that you are husband and wife. If your spouse was like that before you said “I do,” then he/she will be like that when you return from the honeymoon.

Many couples get into tense arguments and long battles over behaviors that were present in the dating stage. Here are a few examples:

Your husband spends more time watching television than he does talking with you. It seems like “Sports Center” is on the television when you wake up in the morning and when you go to sleep at night. While dating, you knew he was a sports fan, and you even spent hundreds of dollars on tickets and sports memorabilia for his birthday. You beamed with pride when your man opened his gift! But now that you are married, you expect him to redirect his passion for sports into a passion for talking to you.

Or maybe your husband refuses to help with the housework. All you can get him to do is take out the trash and mow the lawn. But why should he do more when you, his former girlfriend, cleaned his apartment and even washed his clothes. Back then you were trying to prove you were “wife material,” but now that you are a wife, you feel there’s nothing left to prove. You got the man; now the man needs to get to work around the house.

Husbands, your wife rarely cooks, and you are craving some soul food right about now. While dating you frequented trendy restaurants and only ate home cooked meals on holidays. Now you are left preparing dinner yourself or eating curbside to-go. It was cool to wine and dine your girl then, but now that you are married, you want to hear some pots banging in the kitchen.

Or maybe your wife is a career woman. She is driven to succeed and earn her own money. While dating, you liked her ambition and the fact that she wasn’t a so-called “gold digger.” That was appealing to you then, but now that you are married, you would prefer she climb down from the career ladder and look to you as the main provider.

All of these scenarios can be worked out with communication, honesty, and compromise. And I do believe both spouses must change some of their behaviors in order to truly become “one” in marriage. But it takes time. The reality is, too, some behaviors may never change. Your husband may never put his clothes in the laundry and his shoes in the closet. Your wife may never fall in love with cooking. When this happens, you have to ask yourself, does it really matter in the big picture? What are the qualities I fell in love with before we married, and how can I magnify those more than the others? After all, I knew this about my spouse before we married, so why am I trippin’?

Now, I know some of you are wondering about more serious behaviors that affect a marriage, such as cheating, abuse, addiction, lying, etc. I’m not suggesting you laugh these off. Serious, life-threatening behaviors require professional help. Get the help you need.

But when it comes to not so serious matters, some things we have to either live with or develop a process to bring about change. Whatever the case, we might as well stop trippin’ and start focusing on what we love about each other.

Do you need to stop trippin’ about something and just accept it or be patient?  


About the author

Dr. Michelle Johnson wrote 76 articles on this blog.

Dr. Michelle Johnson is the founder of Alabaster Woman Ministries, an online international women's ministry. She is a wife, mother, writer, speaker, teacher. Through her daily blog, online radio show, and video Bible studies, Dr. Michelle encourages women and married couples to make God the center of their lives.


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12 WordPress comments on “You Knew That Before You Got Married, So Why Are You Trippin’?

  1. Guest

    Great article!  I am not married right now but find myself in the position of allowing my partner to see who I would be as a wife and watching to see who he would be as a husband.  I am glad to be aware of things I should be looking at and evaluating whether or not I would be able to deal with them for the rest of my life.  I want to be able to go in with eyes wide open.  Its true, some things are not deal breakers, just minor annoyances and it is good to be able to communicate through them and press on toward accomplishing the important stuff with someone as committed as you are by your side.

  2. Vanietrah

    When talking to my other married friends I find myself saying this all the time. If you dealt with this while courting and accepted it don’t look for things to change now. I honestly believe one of the biggest mistakes people make when going into a marriage is thinking there will be an instant change once you say I do

  3. Therman Arrington

    this is so correct you can’t feed a lion /lioness  meat then expect for him/her become a vegg person it’s just not going to happen….I find the  sex is a major thing  when relating to this subject . You can’t expect for a man or woman to to have a healthy sex life then you want to slow down on what you been doing your setting yourself of for plenty of bickering & maybe divorce .

  4. Lawandaweldon

    Oh my God you are truly speaking in this article!   I think we overlook some behaviors and then they become annoying once we get married to the person.   Wow thank you for this Word!

  5. Lilipee08

    Thanks for this article. when ever I read your articles its as if you are talking directly to me. You’ve being an inspiration and being married for 8 years I am learning a lot here. Thanks God bless you.

  6. Jada - Kay

    I really love your writing style and your articles are definately an eye opener. I would like to see you write something on how to approach certain topics with your spouse. For e.g. If you see a trait you don’t like, how do you say it to him /her? More like ‘how to be assertive with your spouse”

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