I have been married for, what I consider, a long time now. We just passed our ninth year of marriage and — having been together with the same man for the past 14 years — I have learned a lot about love, relationships, and marriage. I know I still have a lot to learn though.
When it comes to marriage, I think there are a lot of myths about what makes a marriage work, what makes a marriage fall apart, and how to have a long-lasting loving relationship. I know there was a lot I didn’t know or understand before marriage and even the first few years into it. I believed a lot of the tips and advice people would give about what kept a marriage happy and how to set yourself up for finding the right guy for you.
It’s not all true though, which I have come to realize over the years. Both the myths about what makes a marriage work and old advice that just doesn’t seem to hold true today are widespread and below I’ve listed 14 common myths about marriage and just what I think about them.
14 Common Myths About Marriage 1 of 15
I've heard these myths a lot over time and some of them don't have much truth behind them.
Don’t Argue 2 of 15
I've heard the advice that couples should not argue and if you do, you're not in a happy marriage. I've heard that arguing destroys a relationship, but in my experience it can make things better. Truth is, we all have disagreements and arguments with everyone and your spouse will be no different. I've found that we can learn to communicate more effectively when we argue and we certainly do just that now than earlier on.
You Have to Have “The” Person 3 of 15
I have never really believed in a soul mate or "the person" when it comes to finding love. I think that sets us all up for unrealistic expectations and ideas about marriage. It could have you waiting for a relationship that has no problems because with "the one" it should be easy. That doesn't exist in my experience.
You Need to Have a Lot in Common 4 of 15
While I believe fundamentally you should have things in common (basic morals), you don't have to have a lot or all things in common. My husband and I don't have the same religious views, we don't have hobbies in common, and yet our opposites attract.
You Should Be Established First 5 of 15
I married young compared to the norm these days. I got married right out of college — the summer I graduated and I was 22 years old. While both of us were working in our career field, I had not had full-time employment yet since I was just out of school. I don't believe in the myth that you need to have your career, house, goals and all that achieved before you "settle down." My husband and I have grown together and accomplished a lot thanks to the support of each other.
You Should Always Want the Same Things 6 of 15
That's kind of impossible and unrealistic to say. No one always wants the same thing as someone else and in a marriage, it's no different. It's about communication and compromise on even the most important topics in a marriage from kids, to career, to money.
Don’t Go to Bed Angry 7 of 15
It can't happen all the time. Sometime you're angry and being tired and angry is just a bad mix. There are times where a small break from the arguing can do you both good and communication is important -- not solving things in record time.
All Marriages Are Happy 8 of 15
From my perspective, there has been an increase in divorces and I think that since it's not uncommon anymore, people assume that if you're still married -- your marriage is totally happy. I don't think this is always true and there are some big reasons why a couple may choose to stay married despite being unhappy.
Sex Life Isn’t That Important 9 of 15
While I don't think it's the biggest issue in a marriage, sex does matter. I have heard time and time again that when you get married, your sex life slows down and that's just to be expected, expect it's not. If one partner is not happy in their sex life, it's important to talk it out because it can have a big impact.
All Marriages are Monogamous 10 of 15
Not all marriage look the same and while it may not make sense to you, sometimes a non-monogamous marriage works for another couple. Some have partners outside their spouse and some have three or more people involved. As long as it's all agreed upon beforehand and there is a lot of communication involved too, I don't think it's a bad thing.
Romance Is Important 11 of 15
I hear all the time that the best marriages are all romantic, but I don't think it's totally important. I am, by nature, not a romantic person. I don't put a lot of importance on romantic holidays or lovey-dovey things and I feel my marriage is just fine even with the lack of traditional romance.
Children Will Strengthen a Marriage 12 of 15
Children could strengthen a marriage, but it's a bad reason to have a child if that's what you're looking for. Adding kids and extra responsibilities can put a big strain on even the most strong marriage and that's where communication is key again. If there's no communication, changes, and understanding, having children could have the opposite effect.
Marriage Makes People Happier 13 of 15
I know a lot of couples who are not married who seem to be just as happy as they could be even if they were married. It's not a big deal anymore like it was back in the day to be officially married.
Living Together Before Marriage is Smart 14 of 15
I lived with my husband before we were married for two years, but we always had the idea that we would get married right after college. It's advice that we all hear a lot, but it may not be accurate. A study conduced by RAND sociologists Michael Pollard and Kathleen Mullan Harris says, "cohabiting males show significantly less commitment on all four measures, and 52 percent are not "almost certain" their relationship will last."
Sex is Less Satisfying When You’re Married 15 of 15
It's such a generalized statement that is not really accurate to all married couples. While some may feel stifled by their married sex life others may feel more comfortable and liberated through the trust build in marriage. It all depends on the couple's commitment to making it all work.
:: what marriage myths have you come across that you’d like to set straight? ::
Photo credits: photostock
More on Babble:
- 15 Animals Who Haven’t Had Their Morning Coffee
- 15 Tips For Getting Back In the Mood After Having a Baby
- 14 Reasons You Didn’t Get That Second Date
- 14 Love Lessons We Learn from Watching “The Bachelorette”
- 10 Strange Things That’ll Make Your Partner More Attractive
MORE ON BABBLE
5 things ALL women want to hear
25 vintage ads that scream SEXISM
Women are desperate to get married… and 16 other myths men believe
The 13 worst reasons to get married
15 ways women are ruining their sex lives