I took a lot of things from my failed marriage. For a little while those things mostly consisted of anger, resentment, and broken-hearted feelings. It was so easy for me to pinpoint everything that my ex-husband did wrong in the relationship, leading us to our ultimate demise.
But for the sake of my future relationships, I decided I needed to take a step back and humble myself. To humble myself enough to be able to reflect honestly on the mistakes I made in the relationship as well. So I have compiled a list of the top five ways that I believe I aided in my marriage’s downfall:
1. I realize now that expectations are a killer
I do not know if I held my husband to such a high standard because I have a Saint of a father or if it was a side effect of many of romantic comedies I watched in my teen years. Whatever the root cause, I realize that I came into my marriage pre-wired with all of these expectations.
Every man shows his love differently. Some may be the Prince Charming type that shows their affections in the typical storybook ways. While other men are simpler creatures and show their love through the non-elaborate thing in life – like leaving you the last corner brownie piece. Every man is wired differently, so we cannot hold them all to the expectations of the men in romantic comedies.
2. In long-term partnerships, we become accustomed to one another
Our partner will inevitably lose the new-ness that we were once so intrigued by. We get used to our partners, and we stop doing all of the little things that we did at the beginning of the relationship to show them that we are intrigued. We have to win continually our husbands’ hearts, just as they should never stop trying to win ours.
Even though we know we already have it, we must keep doing the things we once did to win it. We cannot forget to show our partners that they still excite our hearts and soothe our souls by not getting so caught up in the mundanity of marriage. Never quit pursuing him and showing him what he means to you.
Read also – 9 Things Every Man Wants from His Future Wife
3. Praise him and show him he is appreciated
I have learned that men are fairly simple creatures that thrive off of praise. When he does something, we need to remember to show him that we noticed this action and that we appreciate it. I failed at this time and time again in my marriage. Just a simple statement to let him know that you noticed his actions and efforts will do.
I would often take times to notice when my husband did something, like “oh, he took the garbage out without me asking.” But maybe vocalizing this thought would have made him feel more appreciated. So he didn’t feel like all of his actions went unseen.
4. We all have a terribly damaging tendency to revert to a ‘the grass is greener on the other side’ complex
We compare the entirety of our relationship to the perfectly posed Facebook relationships of our friends and family. With social media, we only see the best of everything – everyone’s good side.
When I told one of my friends that I was getting a divorce he seemed so surprised. “But you looked happy in your Facebook and Instagram pictures.” He said. I did look happy in my pictures, but I was not happy at all in my marriage.
We cannot take the small, beautiful, and carefully crafted morsels of others lives that we see online and compare them to the entirety of our raw and real relationship. The grass is not always greener on the other side, it is greener where it is watered.
Read also – 9 Temptations That Can Ruin Your Relationship
5. What I will crown the greatest mistake of mine during my marriage is focusing on his weaknesses rather than his strengths
When you live with someone, share all possessions with them, and see them every damn day, it is so easy to become blinded by their weaknesses. To become hyperfocused on the things they do that drive you absolutely insane.
But, we cannot expect our partner to want to better himself if he feels as if all we will ever notice are his downfalls. We must make it a priority to build our husbands up. Yes, we should call him out on his major faults and short-comings, but we should never forget to appreciate his strengths.
It is always easy to see what others have done wrong, but stepping back and looking at our own downfalls is a bit more challenging and cringe-worthy. But by doing so we are only bettering ourselves for the soulmate that we are patiently awaiting.