6 Things Young Brides Need To Know About Marriage

By

6 Things Young Brides Need To Know About Marriage
The wedding is only one day; this is the advice you'll need "til death do us part."

I have seen the "advice for brides" columns before. They are often laden with sugar-coated, diluted suggestions for living happily ever after: "Communication is the key to happiness" or "Healthy fighting equals a successful marriage." I read them all before I got married. At 24 years old, I thought I knew I was doing — because when you're in your twenties, you think you are wise beyond your years. But after two children and 10 years of marriage, my "happily ever after" ended with divorce.

Now, I am a divorce coach — coaching women who are unhappily married looking to end their relationship, or those who are recently divorced. I have talked with hundreds of women worldwide about their regrets and what they have learned. Here's what you need to know before you say "I do:"

  1. It's not about the wedding, but the man at the end of the aisle: The bridal marketing industry has done a great job brainwashing us to think we need that dream wedding. More than ever, brides are obsessed with spending thousands on a dress they will wear for only four hours, as well as months of planning every detail down to the last flower petal. Don't forget the purpose of the wedding — which is to marry your best friend. When you walk down the aisle focus on him, not everyone looking at you. Remember, the wedding lasts a day, but your marriage is forever.
  2. If you're not attracted to him now, you may never be: Perhaps you grew up with him or you've known him for years, and you love him because of the history you share. But are you physically attracted to him? Women who have been married for years have told me, "I love him, but I have never really found him attractive." And because of that, sex becomes a major problem in the marriage, with one or both spouses looking to cheat. Attraction to each other is a huge part of intimacy and passion, which is key to a lifelong relationship.
  3. You need to be best friends now for when things go wrong later: When you are in your twenties, you have yet to see job loss, mortgage payments, pregnancy scares or infertility, a sick child at 2 am or having to take care of your elderly parent. You will endure stress you can't fathom right now, and your relationship will be tested. As best friends, role play these scenarios so that you can mitigate any surprises later.
  4. You should never complete each other: Oh Jerry Maguire, how you set us all up for failure with your famous line, "You. Complete. Me." Here's a secret; no one should complete anyone. You should love yourself and be secure with who you are, as no man should ever make you feel whole. Without a strong foundation of your whole self, your relationship will be built like a house of cards. In marriage, 1+1 does not equal 2. It should equal two ones.
  5. Divorce is always an option: No one ever gets married thinking they will get divorced, but try this; go into your marriage thinking you might get divorced. Knowing that your relationship is always at risk will force you to nurture and respect it. Appreciate each other every day. Say thank you.  If you happen to find a diamond on the ground, you will hold onto to it dearly, knowing that it might get lost. Do the same with your marriage.
  6. Having kids will not make your marriage better: In case you haven't heard, having kids is tough. The moment a child comes into your life, your marriage is no longer about each other, but about raising a human being. Being a parent will bring you the most joy you will ever see, but it will also bring you agony, heartbreak, and lots of work. I see unhappy couples have more children to fill the void that is in their marriage, only to find them divorced after the baby novelty wears off. So don't expect children to improve your marriage because for a while, it will feel like they tear you apart.

At 39 years old, I recently walked down the aisle for the second time in my life. Hopefully you will do it only once. But I'm pretty confident this marriage will work, only because I respect that it may not. Happy wedding to all you beautiful brides.

This article was originally published at http://www.huffingtonpost.com. Reprinted with permission.

More relationship advice for women on YourTango:

Article contributed by
Advanced Member

Lindsey Ellison

Divorce Coach

Lindsey Ellison

The Inspired Divorce

www.lindseyellison.com

Email me today for a free 60-minute consultation!

Location: Annapolis, MD
Credentials: BA, BS
Other Articles/News by Lindsey Ellison:

How To Deal With A Narcissist Without Losing Your Mind

By

If you are related to, married to or divorced from a narcissist, then you know how difficult it is reason with them. Narcissists are masters at manipulation. They are often intelligent and charming when you first meet them. In the beginning, you hold them to high esteem. They're fully aware of this, of course, and they love to bask in your adulation. ... Read more

A Coach's Confession On Her Depression & Breakdown

By

On a cool summer evening five years ago, I heard children playing outside my window, and the soft humming of evening crickets blending with their laughter. I should be going for a walk, I thought. Instead, I was lying on the couch, unable to move, paralyzed from grief and gut wrenching sadness.  Just get up, Lindsey. Put your feet on the floor ... Read more

Want To Be Happy? Try Using This One Simple Phrase Everyday

By

I came across a letter written to me exactly five years ago today, and I wanted to share it with you: "I am trying to be happy but nothing is working. I get up and go to work but all I feel is heartache and despair. When I am home alone, all I do is miss him, and I'm trying so hard not to. It seems like the more I try not to do something, the more ... Read more

See More

PARTNER POSTS