Can You Break These Marriage Rules?
Does the old adage “Rules are meant to be broken” apply to the “rules” of marriage? Can they truly be broken without ruining the marriage? Can they be bent slightly and still remain in tact? Here are a few rules about marriage that some feel can be broken.
I am the child of a police officer and we all know what happens when you break the law and it’s especially worse when you’re brought up in a law enforcement household because “you should have known better”. But the law books don’t pertain to marriage, so is it OK to break these long held “rules” of marriage?
Don’t Go to Bed Angry
People are always willing to dish out marriage advice to a couple who’s headed to the altar and this was one of the things I was told a lot. I say if you’re tired, deal with it later. Cooler heads will prevail in the morning and you’ll have more time to think about the situation, a solution and what you’re going to say when confronted with whatever problem you’re trying to work through.
Fighting Leads to Divorce
Don’t you think it’s healthy to have a fight every now and again? Not saying you should always fight about every single little thing all the time, but having it out once in a while is healthy. I’ve also learned that while it’s OK to sqabble, you need to do it fairly. Don’t hold back and then explode all at once. Author Elizabeth Lombardo, PhD says that being passive for too long can lead to being aggressive. Strike a nice balance and be assertive. If something is bugging you, say something. Don’t internalize and don’t personalize. Just because he doesn’t help with chores doesn’t mean he doesn’t care. Lombardo spells it out in her book, A Happy You: Your Ultimate Prescription for Happiness.
Boring = Bad
I’m not a huge fan of drama. Drama on TV or in the movies is fine, but when there is drama in my life, I don’t like it. What I do like is clicking along and a nice even pace. I understand that there will be a bump in the road every now and again but being the creator of those bumps is not necessarily something I enjoy. I know that on a weekend morning, I am going to make pancakes and bacon, Glen is going to clean up and load the dishwasher and then head outside to do yard work. If it’s nice and the house is clean, I’ll go outside and help. And by help I mean keep him company or talk to the neighbors or play with the kids. If there’s work to do inside, I’ll clean, do laundry and make a list for the grocery store. When the yard work is done, we’ll take the brush and grass clippings to the compost pile and go to the store. When we return from the store, I will put away the groceries, empty the dishwasher and get dinner started. After dinner, Glen will clean up and we will play a game, watch TV, have a fire or go hang with the neighbors. It’s boring mundane stuff, but I love it. A little adventure away from the norm is great, but play clothes and pajamas are more my cup of tea. Motivational speaker and relationship expert Barbara Bartlein even says, “don’t confuse a calm, predictable union with a bad one.” If there is constant drama in your relationship, chances are that’s not a healthy relationship.
Have the Same Interests
Yes, it’s nice to have similar interests, but to be interested in everything all the same and have no differences would be awful. How would you teach the other person about stuff? Sure, you’d have a lot to talk about, but you wouldn’t have anything to say to the other one. I’m glad that Glen is a radio guy. He understands the business, the odd hours and the wackiness that can go along with it. We also enjoy the same types of music, sports and TV shows, but I also love cooking and baking, fashion and style, shopping and gossip magazines. He likes politics, history, plunking around in the garage and collecting baseball cards. I don’t think I could ever ask him to give those things up and he feels the same way. If we had to have all of the same interests I think I would feel smothered or trapped.
What do you think? Can these marriage “rules” be broken but still have the union in tact?