Like so many little girls, I spent countless days of my childhood playing dress up and imagining my future wedding day. I wanted the whole deal: the big poofy dress, the singing birds, and of course, the handsome Prince Charming. I can still remember my mother telling me that “a wedding and a marriage are two different things,” but I wasn’t really listening — I was too busy getting lost in my pretend world of fairy tale storylines and happy endings. It would take me years before I would realize what she was actually saying: the wedding is a fairy tale party, but the marriage? That takes work.
Pink recently opened up about this cold hard truth when discussing her 11-year marriage to Carey Hart in an interview with The Guardian. And true to form, she held nothing back.
“There are moments where I look at [Hart] and he is the most thoughtful, logical, constant … he’s like a rock,” she said. “He’s a good man. He’s a good dad. He’s just the kind of dad I thought he’d be and then some … And then I’ll look at him and go: I’ve never liked you. There’s nothing I like about you.”
I can’t help but read these words and think, Girl, I have been there in my marriage, too.
My husband and I will be celebrating 13 years together this year and every single day is a bit like starting over, in that we both have to make the choice to make this work. There is no “happily ever after” once those vows are exchanged, instead it’s more like a lifetime of reminding ourselves that as life circumstances shift and waistlines expand and hairlines thin, we still want to have each other’s backs. Simply put, you get out of marriage exactly what you put into it.
Having three kids running circles around my husband and I means that we often put our romantic selves squarely last. (After all, it’s pretty hard to even hold hands at this point, because there’s always a kid or two one of us.) As a result, dry spells happen in happy marriages — and Pink doesn’t beat around the bush when it comes to admitting that they do.
“Then you’ll go through times when you haven’t had sex in a year,” she told The Guardian, adding that she’ll often wonder, “Is this bed death? Is this the end of it? Do I want him? Does he want me?‘”
Nope, nope, and nope.
The 38-year-old singer puts it in plain terms: “Monogamy is work! But you do the work and it’s good again.'”
The truth is, marriage is a marathon and not a quick sprint toward happiness, and my husband and I see this truth for what it is every single day. While our children are young and wild and need every last ounce of our attention right now, we’re learning that appreciating each other as parents and best friends is just as important as knocking boots on date nights. I love that celebrities like Pink aren’t afraid to talk about the hard parts of marriage out loud, because there is nothing worse than feeling like what is a normal journey of ups and downs is somehow incomplete and backwards if it doesn’t look like “happily ever after”.