Many people know that marriage is not a stroll down Easy Road or bed of roses; it is more like a bumpy drive through human flaws highway. Marriage is difficult because it is the bonding together of two imperfect human beings. Becoming one does not mean becoming the same. Oneness only means, sharing the same degree of commitment to the marriage, having the goals, dreams, and mission in life as a couple. Achieving internal conformity in your marriage comes with engaging in unselfish acts.
The young man, who for the first time asks the young woman whom he has admired so much from a distance for a date, experiences a considerable thrill when she accepts his invitation. As time passes and she accepts several invitations, he begins to take her willingness for granted.
Then comes the time when the young man decides to ask the young woman to be his wife. He takes great care to make sure that the setting is ideal and that he has carefully thought out the words to use. And then as he receives the affirmative answer, in the style best suited to their individual tastes, he receives the thrill of a lifetime and assumes, for the moment, that he has now experienced the best that life has to offer.
Early in marriage, some young women still live in a world of fantasy created by romantic novels and distorted view of what married life should be. So when the couple has settled down to the routine of making a living, they begin to feel that married life had not provided all the romance that she had expected it would.
They could not help noticing the contrast between the very colorful pictures which the authors portrayed of married life, and the simple, almost monotonous life they lived in real life. Her experience with married life proved to be much less romantic than that which was described in her favorite romantic novels. The question that arises is,”Have I married the wrong person?”
At first these thoughts seemed innocuous, but they began to interfere with her initial regard for her husband. Instead of hurriedly brushing these wayward thoughts from her mind, she permitted them to take root, until she actually began to feel that she had been deprived of the better things that life has to offer.
She began to notice things about her husband that seemed repulsive. When a wife tends to look for objectionable features in her husband’s personality, she is sure to find them, for every personality includes not only favorable traits, but certain unfavorable ones.
If you are like the woman described above you must admit to yourself that selfishness was the fundamental basis for your discontent with your married life was her lack of appreciation of the young man she married. Had you been thinking unselfishly in terms of your partner’s success and your combined development, you would not have found occasion to harbor the critical thoughts which now occupied your attention.
The attitude of feeling sorry for yourself brought you to the climax of your mistaken and mischievous delusion; where you actually began to contemplate the taking of steps by which you would break up the marriage, so that you could be released from what you now considered to be an unfair bondage.
They were about six months into the marriage when Barbara began to feel that Maxwell was withdrawing from her. He was working longer hours, and when he is at home, he spent considerable time with the computer. When she finally expressed her feelings that he was avoiding her, Maxwell told her that he was not avoiding her but simply trying to stay on top of his job. He said that he was under pressure and how important it was that he does well in his first year on the job. Barbara was not happy but she decided to give her husband some time to see if things will change.
One thing you must know is that an individual can either make or destroy his own happiness. Happiness is a byproduct of life. It comes as the result of living actively and unselfishly. It comes as one learns to spend one’s energies in the interests and the benefit of others. It comes from focusing attention on those things which are wholesome and desirable rather than looking for the things which are unpleasant and disappointing.
Of course, there may come, certain disillusionment as a young couple observes unfavorable traits in their personalities. There may come, disappointments because of the development of poor health or manifestation of certain inadequacies. But in the marriage vow, the couple agrees to accept each other “for better or worse” as long as they live.
An important principle of successful marriage is the ability to become reconciled to a disappointment at the earliest possible moment. Persons who are able to make a healthy adjustment to bereavement; to a financial loss, succeeds in extracting from life the best it has to offer than are those individuals whose personalities are crippled as a result of some unexpected tragedy.
It is young families like this that their wedding marks, more or less, the end of the thrilling companionship which they had enjoyed throughout courtship. Actually, there no marriage which can qualify as being one hundred per cent perfect, and this should incite a young person to investigate those qualities which are known to have a bearing on the success of marriage and to make a concerted effort to act wisely in choice of a life partner. Prayers for divine guidance in the choice of life’s partner should not be disregarded.
Donald Kaufman wrote that, “A good marriage is a contract between two persons but sacred covenant between three.” Making God a part of your marriage adds a powerful strength to its foundation, because as it is written in Ecclesiastes 4:12, “A cord of three is not quickly broken.”
Even in a perfectly happy home there arise certain complexities that require intelligent handling lest they take on the proportion of a major problem. The fact that these complexities develop cast no reflection on the quality of the home relationships. They are not the result of negligence or of evil design. They are simply products of human existence and are characteristic of every family situation.