In the run up leading to your wedding I’m sure you received a ton of marriage advice. Some of it solicited, most of it unsolicited. And I’m sure in the many words of wisdom, quotes and tit bits that you’ve received, you’ve heard people say, “What goes on in your marriage is between you and your husband. Don’t involve your friends. Don’t involve your family….”
This piece of advice although valuable can also be extremely damaging to you as an individual. The first few months / years of marriage are an extremely confusing time. A period I like to call the teething stage.
A period when half the time you don’t know if you’re doing things right or wrong. A time when you actually need advice from people who’ve travelled the road before.
But I find myself being silent.
Silent in my emotion. Silent in my frustration. Just silent.
“Loneliness does not come from being alone, but from being unable to communicate the things that seem important to you.” – Unknown
That one piece of advice – what happens in your marriage is between you and your husband – can make marriage an extremely lonely affair.
I find myself a lot of the time, during an argument with my husband, feeling helpless because I do not know where I can turn to. Who can I call? Where can I vent? Where is my safe place?
Marriage is lonely. People don’t tell you that. People don’t explain that to you.
Now don’t get me wrong. Yes, I love my husband. Yes, I am committed to my husband and making it work. But in the midst of that happily ever after is reality. The reality of who you have married and the reality of tension you experience in trying to build a healthy life together.
“There are some things you can only learn in a storm.” – Unknown
And the period – where the two of you are finding your feet, testing out your new roles, figuring out who you are in this new season of your life – is extremely stressful, confusing and emotionally draining.
So how do you deal with this strange feeling of loneliness?? You deal with it by being completely honest with yourself. Be honest. Feel the emotion. Write it down. Engage with it. And drill down into yourself.
I find that being honest eliminates it. Being honest eliminates the imaginary wall that being silent builds around you.
When my family or single friends ask me “How’s married life?”, I’m honest: “It’s different” , “It’s an adjustment”, “We’re teething”. You can be honest without giving away the personal details of your marriage and home.
“Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom.” – Thomas Jefferson
Marriage is a beautiful mystery. There’s no formula to it and every couple is unique. What works for them may or may not work for us. But in order to figure out what works for you and your spouse, you have to be honest with yourself.
If you can’t be honest with yourself, then you can’t be honest with your spouse. And if you can’t be honest with yourself, you’re building a castle of silence and loneliness around you.
Hlano is a newly-wed young woman who is honest, vulnerable and strong. Her desire is that people begin to share the realities of marriage so that others get into it with an understanding of the great and not-so-great aspects that they will encounter.
Let us know what you think about Hlano’s experience in marriage. Have you had a similar situation? Is your experience different? What further counsel would you give to someone in Hlano’s situation? Let’s grow and learn together.
Before you go sis! Below I share brief insight into what you can expect from us this month!