Five Marriage Lies We Should Stop Telling

BY: - 12 Apr '12 | Marriage

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A good marriage should be built on honesty, right? So why do we keep telling so many lies? Here are five widespread marriage lies we need to stop telling ourselves (and everybody else):

The person you married should stay the person you married. I hear this one all of the time and every time it sounds equally as ridiculous. How many of us are exactly the same person that we were five, ten, fifteen years ago? My hobbies, my style, my perspective on life””all of those things have shifted and changed between the time we met in our early 20s and now because we’re human beings, and that doesn’t change because we’re married. Nothing remains forever unchanged, except for maybe Twinkies, and then you have to wonder what’s in them.

This is just me. Accept me for who I am. Okay this one is true, to an extent. We do have to take the good with the bad and we can’t spend all of our time trying to change our spouse’s behavior. But we also can’t take advantage of that acceptance by using “take me as I am” as an excuse for every poor behavior. Saying “I know I’m wrong, but I’ll never try to do better” is selfish and childish. Adults try to do better when they know better, and while we acknowledge our flaws, we should still be striving to do our best.

I could never cheat. It’s easy to look at the constant barrage affairs in the media, point our fingers in disgust and say, “That could never be me.” Yet while we should regard infidelity with disdain, because it’s wrong, we get into trouble when we start thinking that we are immune to making the same kind of bad decisions. It takes a real loser to walk down the aisle thinking that he or she is going to cheat within the next couple of years. For the most part, I think affairs happen when people think that they are somehow incapable of committing that kind of sin, and don’t guard their hearts, minds, and activities accordingly. Instead of saying “I would never,” we need to understand that as humans we are vulnerable to temptation, will be tempted, and have the right safeguards in place to make sure we remain faithful to our spouses.

I’ll always love you as much as I do today. Sometimes we’re as blissfully happy as we were on our wedding day, a lot of times we’re happier, sometimes we’re really annoyed with each other, every now and again I want to run screaming into the night yelling “What have I done!” That loving feeling is just that. A feeling. Just like happiness, anger, and indigestion, feelings can change by the moment, and please believe that less than loving can be among those.

There’s a secret to a happy marriage.
Now it’s quite possible that I’m wrong on this one. Maybe there’s a secret that I just haven’t been let in on yet. Otherwise though, looking for the secret to marriage is like looking for the secret to weight loss, which is, at the end of the day, work at it (If there were a secret miracle weight loss pill, Oprah obviously can’t afford it so why do you think you can buy one for $29.99?). Similarly with marriage, there’s no shortcut, no magic bliss button, just working until you get it right. Which, when we stop lying to ourselves and looking for secrets, becomes a lot easier.

Do you agree with this list? Do you have any marriage lies to add?

Get more tips to keep your marriage hot even when you’re short on time at Making Love in the Microwave.

About the author

Aja Dorsey Jackson wrote 214 articles on this blog.

Aja Dorsey Jackson is a freelance writer and marriage educator in Baltimore, Maryland and author of the blog and book, Making Love in the Microwave.


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15 WordPress comments on “Five Marriage Lies We Should Stop Telling

  1. Mrsmcphearson

    I agree a 100% with this list.   It’s makes me feel a little better that iam not the only one that think you should never say you want cheat. this is one thing that me and my husband cant talk about.   cause he ask me a while ago will I ever cheat and I told him wth the Lords help I want.   one lil ? turned into a five day of not talking to me. I dont think I was wrong about the answer I gave him, was I? I just looked at it as if I was telling the truth.

  2. no comment

    I have a married friend who always says people marry who they marry and you should stay that way and IF you are the one who “changes” no matter how big or small the other person has the right to want out and leave the marriage. Ex. If a man wants a stay at home wife/mom and say the kids hit middle school and she decides she wants work (full or part time) and the hubby doesn’t approve then the wife shouldn’t get a job because that is not who he married or what he signed up for. I thought she was playing at first. I am single and I believe people are ever changing esp. if you get married young. I am in my mid 30s so I am pretty much who I am going to be.

    1. Microwavelove

       I think its important to understand that no living, breathing thing remains the same forever. We all change. Part of staying married is being able to grow and change together.

  3. Misssteph725

     #3 stands out to me the most, when I first got married, my husband stood on a soap box saying this very thing, well seven years later I fell into a very depressive state and totally shut down (for the past two years)   emotionally and guess what he found himself in another woman’s bed, when I found out he said I pushed him away. I am still very crushed but trying to make it work 🙁

  4. Domesticpolichick

    Fantastic list. I’ll definitely pass on. I’d add to that list: ” such and such couple is so perfect.” There’s simply no such thing. Too often, people are afraid to get real about the major challenges they faced in marriage and talk about how they overcame those struggles. My husband and I have overcome money woes, infertility, miscarriages, major illness, our family’s religious and cultural differences, and know there’s more to come. Now don’t get me wrong, there’s LOTS of sweet mixed in with those bitter times. But my point is that getting real with folks about the fact that such challenges test you and stretch you as a couple goes a long way toward understanding.

  5. Daysha_evins

    My grandparents have been married for 50+ years and my granny told my fiancee and I, that the secret to a long and happy marriage is communication,honesty and God. As long as we had those 3 we can sustain a long and happy marriage. I agree with the “feelings” portion, because he and I have been together for almost 4 years and there were times were we barely said hey to each other but through communicating and sometimes brutal honesty we’re still going strong. I didn’t include love because that is an automatic given.

  6. Melvina

    i absolutely and completely agree with every word.  
    – people change and grow, the point is to grow and change together or let each other do their thing but still come together as hubby and wife at the end of the day

    – accept as you are sure, but i agree, lets not get carried away with it. realistic and clear expectations are helpful

    – anyone can cheat – even the most saintly person. I don’t judge people as I dont walk in their shoes, but safeguarding sounds like a good idea to me

    – weight loss/oprah- LOL!! I’m gonna use that myself : ) I agree, each marriage is different – get to know the secret to your own happiness and maybe it will be more frequent than the days when you barely recognise one another..

    : )

    Like I say. I loved this post!!!

  7. GeeGee4

    Good list everyone, but I have one to add…. If both of us have a relationship with God and go to church, our marriage will be great!!! That is not the case for me. We have God, thankfully but that doesn’t excuse us from major issues and problems. No matter what, you both have to work for it!!!!

  8. T. Henry

    Good list. If I were to add one more, it would be that “problems will work themselves out and if they don’t, then we’re not meant to be”. Even the best auto-pilot systems known to man need a manually pushed button from time to time. A person who thinks that just letting their issues work themselves out is the best way is a person who is afraid to confront their OWN fault in those issues!

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Childfree And Happy

BY: - 13 Apr '12 | Marriage

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By Michaela Stephens

This is for all my fellow married without children couples out there. This is for all the stereotypes, interrogations, and the social outcast that being without young in’s gets you! This one’s for you guys! *starts playing “My Life” by Gwen Stefani* (Google it.)

Before we go further let’s go ahead and redefine some terminology real quick. First, my husband and I are not childLESS, we are childFREE. Childless makes it sound like we’re missing something, or that there’s a void that can only be filled with a bumbling, drooling baby.

Since the first, oh, ten minutes after our wedding, my husband and I have been inundated with questions about having children. The questions were basic at first, just a simple “So, are you going to have children?” After the first year this was followed by “So have you guys start planning for kids?” The first couple of years were mainly polite intrusions, more small talk than anything. Now that we have been married for six years, the questions about kids have gotten downright demanding. “Well, when are you going to have them?” “What are ya’ll waiting for?” to the just plain rude, “Oh ya’ll just wanna be selfish for a few more years.” I’m sorry, I didn’t realize that all selfish wants and needs cease to exist once you become a parent. I guess I will tell the many parents I know who love doing “selfish” things like taking a vacation, going on a shopping splurge, or enjoying alone time, that the kid thing didn’t get out those “selfish” kinks, and maybe better luck on the next one?

Why is that childfree couples are always expected to give essay long explanations regarding why we don’t have children? At first, I used to do humor the question with said essay. I had a ready laundry list available for every time we were asked. This got old really quickly, so I started asking the question back. “Well, why did you decide to have kids?” All of the sudden I was being rude, intrusive, and shouldn’t the answer be obvious? I mean duh, kids are the most awesome thing in the world. Why would you dare ask this? Well, being that you feel like it’s okay to question me and feel like I need to go into detail about my life choices, why not flip this on its axis and ask you about yours? It’s only fair, right?

Well, for the record being childfree is awesome too. For our family, (yes FAMILY, because we are still a family even though we don’t have little ones), the answer is simple: we like having disposable income, sleeping in, and having a date night/romantic weekend, without having to find a babysitter before doing so. I wish fellow marrieds, and society as a whole, would respect our decision a heckuva lot more. I don’t question your judgment to actively plan to add a third child to your brood. I just smile, say congratulations and ask when the baby is due. So why is it that when I, a young married, answer your kid question with a no, I get The Look, followed by the ever popular “Well, why not?”

I will never forget this one situation where I responded to a woman and said that my husband and I do not have kids, and weren’t planning on having them for another few years. The woman replied,”Well, the biggest gift I ever gave to my husband was our child. It is one of the most important duties you can do as a wife.” Well, maybe you feel like that. Good for you. But I also feel like my loyalty, love, support over the years (not to mention saying vows in front of God and our family) is a pretty great gift to my husband too. Seriously, based on her reaction, you would have thought I told her I kicked puppies for a living or something.

There is something so unbelievably rude about questioning whether or not someone, specifically a woman, has kids. It’s almost like as a wife, my duty is not complete until I bring forth an heir. Not to mention that many times, people don’t think about the other side of the question. For instance, what if you are asking a childfree couple who has been trying to have children for years, but have been unable to conceive, or has suffered from several miscarriages, which is much more common than people think. For the record, I don’t think it’s the” Do you have kids?” question that is rude, it’s the “Why not?” immediately following the “No” that’s the problem.

All I am saying is this: how about we just respect our individual life choices? Or if we must question, let’s have an open, dialogue where we share from our collective experiences. Having children is a blessing, and being childfree is a blessing. There’s no competition here, we all do what we feel is better when it comes to being happy in our relationships. That sounds good enough to me!

Michaela Stephens is the owner of Metropolitan Swim Instruction, LLC, an aquatics based company that specializes in spreading awareness of the benefits of swim instruction and water safety. She is happily married to her husband of six years, Craven Stephens, who is a soldier in the US Military. Michaela’s two biggest passions are finding ways to help guide other couples through the not so black and white areas of marriage, and also empower the modern woman on how to achieve individual balance, and happiness while juggling all of the many roles in her life.

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