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What It’s Really Like When You’re Married

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What It’s Really Like When You’re Married

Before you got married, you had some idea of what you life would be like as a couple living in matrimonial bliss. What you did not realize, however, was the little daily quirks and not-so-enjoyable habits that you would have to witness as you joined your lives together.

Here are some of the realities of marriage that no one told you about before you got hitched.

1. You have different ideas on how to load the dishwasher

You might think that the way that you do chores is the way everyone else does them, but if so, you are sorely mistaken. Your significant other probably has a different approach to how to load the dishwasher or do laundry.

Remember, because there are cups on the bottom rack or a few dark pieces of clothing with the light, it does not mean that World War III should break out.

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2. You realize the very real clean wars

Remember the saying ‘opposites attract’? This is not always true, especially in marriage. If you thought living with a slob would not be a big deal, while you tend to be a bit OCD, it’s definitely not as simple as it may seem.

Usually the cleaner person ends up being the bad guy, mostly because they are always cleaning or nagging their messier partner to clean up after themselves.

3. You gain twice the stuff

Ever dreamed of getting free stuff? One of the side effects of marriage is that you will be doubling your possessions now. Do not be concerned if your house starts to look like something that you could be a qualifier for the TV show ‘Hoarders’.

4. You never win TV remote battles

Television watching is a whole other ballgame. You might be roped into viewing shows you might never wish on your worse enemy. It seems like whoever gets to the remote first gets to choose, and unfortunately, it is rarely you.

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5. You realize how to read between the lines

Beware of the notorious passive response that tends to be popular with married folk. Answers like “I don’t care what we eat tonight” or “I don’t want anything for our anniversary” are sometimes (not always though) responses that are actually more loaded than they first appear.

They can often be translated to “I will eat anything but Italian or Chinese food” and “I would actually love this new tablet, but I don’t want to seem greedy.”

6. You are always awoken by frozen feet

You know the expression “cold feet” quite literally, when your spouse puts their freezing feet on your warm body. There is nothing that will wake you up faster than this jolt of ice under the covers.

All too often, you have to kindly – and sometimes not so kindly – remind your spouse that you are not a heater.

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7. You have to attend twice the family reunions

Growing up, you always dreaded the annual family reunion and now that you are married you cannot escape your spouse’s either. There are times when you feel like you would rather empty the dishwasher for the whole entire year, than face a force family get-together.

The thing things you do for love, right?

8. You have very different taste in music

You love country, while your spouse loves bluegrass. This is not a problem usually, except when you are in the car together and you want to listen to some communal tunes.

You are learning the art of compromising quite well.

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9. You have an obligation to give up the last cookie

It is an unspoken rule in marriage that you always ask your spouse if they want to have the last cookie, slice of cake, piece of pizza. And  yes, that is even if you know they will say yes 100% of the time.

10. You have to endure your fair share of bodily functions

Once you are married, you seem to feel quite relaxed around each other, which can lead to frequent passing of air out both ends. After all, you did say for better or worse during your wedding vows, right?

Featured photo credit: Flickr via flickr.com

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Last Updated on November 18, 2021

10 Proven Ways to Judge a Person’s Character

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10 Proven Ways to Judge a Person’s Character

We all fall into the trap of judging a person’s character by their appearance. How wrong we are! All too often, the real character of the person only appears when some negative event hits them or you. Then you may see a toxic person emerging from the ruins and it is often a shock.

A truly frightening example is revealed in the book by O’Toole in Bowman called Dangerous Instincts: How Gut Instincts Betray Us. A perfectly respectable, charming, well dressed neighbor was found to have installed a torture chamber in his garage where he was systematically abusing kidnapped women. This is an extreme example, but it does show how we can be totally deceived by a person’s physical appearance, manners and behavior.

So, what can you do? You want to be able to assess personal qualities when you come into contact with colleagues, fresh acquaintances and new friends who might even become lifelong partners. You want to know if they are:

  • honest
  • reliable
  • competent
  • kind and compassionate
  • capable of taking the blame
  • able to persevere
  • modest and humble
  • pacific and can control anger.

The secret is to reserve judgment and take your time. Observe them in certain situations; look at how they react. Listen to them talking, joking, laughing, explaining, complaining, blaming, praising, ranting, and preaching. Only then will you be able to judge their character. This is not foolproof, but if you follow the 10 ways below, you have a pretty good chance of not ending up in an abusive relationship.

1. Is anger a frequent occurrence?

All too often, angry reactions which may seem to be excessive are a sign that there are underlying issues. Do not think that every person who just snaps and throws his/her weight around mentally and physically is just reacting normally. Everyone has an occasional angry outburst when driving or when things go pear-shaped.

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But if this is almost a daily occurrence, then you need to discover why and maybe avoid that person. Too often, anger will escalate to violent and aggressive behavior. You do not want to be near someone who thinks violence can solve personal or global problems.

2. Can you witness acts of kindness?

How often do you see this person being kind and considerate? Do they give money to beggars, donate to charity, do voluntary work or in some simple way show that they are willing to share the planet with about 7 billion other people?

I was shocked when a guest of mine never showed any kindness to the weak and disadvantaged people in our town. She was ostensibly a religious person, but I began to doubt the sincerity of her beliefs.

“The best index to a person’s character is how he treats people who can’t do him any good, and how he treats people who can’t fight back.”

Abigail Van Buren

3. How does this person take the blame?

Maybe you know that s/he is responsible for a screw-up in the office or even in not turning up on time for a date. Look at their reaction. If they start blaming other colleagues or the traffic, well, this is an indication that they are not willing to take responsibility for their mistakes.

4. Don’t use Facebook as an indicator.

You will be relieved to know that graphology (the study of that forgotten skill of handwriting) is no longer considered a reliable test of a person’s character. Neither is Facebook stalking, fortunately. A study showed that Facebook use of foul language, sexual innuendo and gossip were not reliable indicators of a candidate’s character or future performance in the workplace.

5. Read their emails.

Now a much better idea is to read the person’s emails. Studies show that the use of the following can indicate certain personality traits:

  • Too many exclamation points may reveal a sunny disposition
  • Frequent errors may indicate apathy
  • Use of smileys is the only way a person can smile at you
  • Use of the third person may reveal a certain formality
  • Too many question marks can show anger
  • Overuse of capital letters is regarded as shouting. They are a definite no-no in netiquette, yet a surprising number of  people still use them.

6. Watch out for the show offs.

Listen to people as they talk. How often do they mention their achievements, promotions, awards and successes? If this happens a lot, it is a sure indication that this person has an over-inflated view of his/her achievements. They are unlikely to be modest or show humility. What a pity!  Another person to avoid.

7. Look for evidence of perseverance.

A powerful indicator of grit and tenacity is when a person persists and never gives up when they really want to achieve a life goal. Look for evidence of them keeping going in spite of enormous difficulties.

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Great achievements by scientists and inventors all bear the hallmark of perseverance. We only have to think of Einstein, Edison (who failed thousands of times) and Nelson Mandela to get inspiration. The US Department of Education is in no doubt about how grit, tenacity and perseverance will be key success factors for youth in the 21st century.

8. Their empathy score is high.

Listen to how they talk about the less fortunate members of our society such as the poor, immigrants and the disabled. Do you notice that they talk in a compassionate way about these people? The fact that they even mention them is a strong indicator of empathy.

People with zero empathy will never talk about the disadvantaged. They will rarely ask you a question about a difficult time or relationship. They will usually steer the conversation back to themselves. These people have zero empathy and in extreme cases, they are psychopaths who never show any feelings towards their victims.

9. Learn how to be socially interactive.

We are social animals and this is what makes us so uniquely human. If a person is isolated or a loner, this may be a negative indicator of their character. You want to meet a person who knows about trust, honesty and loyalty. The only way to practice these great qualities is to actually interact socially. The great advantage is that you can share problems and celebrate success and joy together.

“One can acquire everything in solitude, except character.”

Stendhal

 10. Avoid toxic people.

These people are trying to control others and often are failing to come to terms with their own failures. Typical behavior and conversations may concern:

  • Envy or jealousy
  • Criticism of partners, colleagues and friends
  • Complaining about their own lack of success
  • Blaming others for their own bad luck or failure
  • Obsession with themselves and their problems

Listen to these people talk and you will quickly discover that you need to avoid them at all costs because their negativity will drag you down. In addition, as much as you would like to help them, you are not qualified to do so.

Now, having looked at some of the best ways to judge a person, what about yourself? How do others see you? Why not take Dr. Phil’s quiz and find out. Can you bear it?

Featured photo credit: Jacek Dylag via unsplash.com

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