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"You can't expect more from a person after you get married than you expected from him/her before the wedding.  Set your expectations in the beginning of your relationship.  That will be the platform to build your future together."   Rev. Burns 

 


UNDERSTANDING EXPECTATIONS (Marriage Survival)

In the early years of marriage, it is important to recognize what really matters to you and your spouse.  Talking with one another about your values, beliefs, and expectations builds your relationship.

Expectations play a big role in determining how satisfied we are in life and with our relationships.  Expectations include feelings, desires, anticipations about life, relationships, "how the world works," and what is likely to happen in the future.

Our expectations shape the meanings we give to our partnerís words and actions, and how we react to our partnerís behavior.

When we are happy in our relationship, we tend to see only the positive.  When we are unhappy, we tend to see only the negative, and it becomes difficult to see our partnerís good aspects.

It is important to understand and talk about expectations.  Expectations include:

  • How communication should take place in relationships;

  • How husbands and wives should handle conflicts and disagreements (such as "never raise voices" or "donít argue in front of the kids");

  • Who has more "say" or whether there should be "equal say" in the marriage;

  • Expectations about sex;

  • Who should do what around the house; and

  • How finances should be handled.

Many spouses think their partnersí expectations are similar to their own.  Actually, it is more likely that you have different expectations.  Remember, itís how you handle your differences that count.

For example, what are your ideas about how feelings should be expresses?  Is it O.K. for spouses to raise their voices when having a disagreement?  How should you and your spouse act when there is trouble, anger, or sadness?  What are your ideas about parenting and children?  What are your expectations about your spiritual life?

Working through disagreements creates intimacy and trust in your marriage.  Handling conflict lays the groundwork for satisfying and fulfilling marriages.

 


DEVELOPING TEAMWORK AND FRIENDSHIP IN MARRIAGE (Marriage Survival)

Spouses often say they want their partner to be their best friend.  Friendship is part of your marriage relationship.

Friends listen to each other, show respect foe each otherís opinions, and are truly interested in each otherís lives.  Friends talk about their interests, dreams, and plans, and discuss what is important to them.

Life after marriage makes it harder to keep time for friendship.  As life gets busier, and issues come up, friendship may suffer.  However, keeping friendship alive is one of the best tools for a successful marriage.  Friends work as a team ? making life easier and more fun.

Make time for "friendship talk" with your spouse, focusing on each otherís work, dreams, and interests.  Keep these friendship talks free from conflict ? do not talk about relationship issues or try to solve problems during this time.

 


 

MARRIAGE AS A BALANCING ACT

 

Individuals have many different roles in their married lives.  These roles include work and family, being a spouse and a parent, and keeping a sense of self while also being part of a couple.  It is important to keep a balance between these sometimes-competing roles.  Doing too much of one often comes at the expense of another.

 

The above data is complied from The Colorado Handbook on Marriages

   

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Chapel of Love Weddings by Reverend Starlene Joyner Burns

MD Wedding Officiant & Maryland Wedding Minister