Many couples marry the person they consider to be their soulmate, hoping for a wonderful future together. You may not imagine riding off into a sunset, but you might have an unconscious belief that you’ll live ‘happily ever after’.
For some couples the wedding confetti has barely settled, for others it’s a while later that they discover that they may have believed a few lies. Here are some common ones.
1. We’ll always be in love
The reality is there will be good days and bad days, and feelings will go up and down. Love will be tested most when you don’t feel like loving your partner at all, those are also the times when you’ll grow the most. Toucan Together’s Loving Module will help you discover each other’s Love Languages®️ and deeper kinds of love, so it’s a great way of starting to make deep connections of intimacy.
2. I can change him or her
Did you ever notice one of your partner’s habits early on in your relationship and think ‘hmmm’, quickly followed by a reassuring thought ‘that’s ok, I can change that’. Many have spent years trying to change their partner with persuasion, manipulation, nagging or even all three! The problem is, you can’t change another person, you can only change yourself.
3. We’ll always want sex
For some couples sex is a huge part of their relationship and physical desire is very strong, so it can come as a surprise when one of you just doesn’t feel like having sex quite so often. The other partner may feel less loved, even a little rejected. Different sex drives can also lead to frustrations and arguments. Hormone levels, tiredness, stress and many other factors will affect your sex life. In a healthy relationship it’s not the frequency of sex that determines how happy you are, it’s whether sex matters to you and your partner.
Sex can be a sensitive subject, but it is important to talk about it as a couple, as with all areas of your relationship and that’s where Toucan’s Loving Module can help create positive communication.
4. You won’t be attracted to other people
This might come as a real surprise, but either you or your partner, or both of you will find yourselves attracted to other people at some time. You may not think that’s a problem at all. But, you and your partner might have differing opinions on what constitutes harmless flirtation, if flirtation is ever completely harmless, because one or even both of you can get hurt. Spending one on one time with people other than your partner can sometimes lead to other things, particularly if you’re vulnerable and start talking about deep and personal things with that other person. It’s wise to heed ancient wisdom to ‘guard your heart’.
5. We’ll never argue
Quite often arguments start over domestic things: the smelly socks and pants left strewn on the floor; expecting you to cook every night even though you work just as many hours; different spending patterns to name a few. It’s normal to have disagreements because you are two different people, with different backgrounds, experiences, personalities and expectations, which are bound to clash from time to time. The trick is to resolve arguments positively and not let seeds of bitterness take root, and Toucan’s Conflict Module is a great way of engaging with the topic.
6. We’ll do everything together
Early on in a relationship people usually want to spend most of their time together, which is great, because it’s part of getting to know your partner. But at some point you may well discover that you don’t actually like dance classes; board games bore you; mountain biking scares the pants off you and you don’t actually want to go out all the time. That’s ok. You don’t have to share every activity or spend all your time together, it’s healthy to pursue separate interests, although sharing very little could chip away at friendship.
7. Money won’t be an issue
Weddings are expensive and there are often other points of stress for couples and the wider family, which you may have experienced. There can also be tensions as a couple as a result of different earning, spending and savings patterns. Then there are questions about who pays for what, do you have a shared bank account, how do you manage money together? You may not have realised, but money means different things to different people; it can be a source of security, a measure of success and other things.
That’s why it’s so important to talk openly about finances before they blow up into problems. Toucan’s Money Module helps you have some meaningful conversations around money and it’s also full of great tips and resources.
8. Our relationship will be good
Most couples go into marriage with high hopes and that’s a good thing. But perhaps at the bottom of the aisle you hear ‘for better …richer …health’ and don’t really take in the ‘worse …poorer …sickness’ parts of the promises you make. There will be challenges and tough times, which can go on for a long time and really make or break a relationship.
If you’ve been divorced then it might be tempting to think: ‘this time it will be different.’ The reality may be that you experience ongoing pressures related to the previous and new relationship (emotional, financial and practical), especially if children are involved.
Whatever your circumstances it’s really important to keep communication between you honest in these times.
It’s also important to acknowledge that good marriages don’t happen by accident. Growing intimacy and a lasting relationship take work, but that can be really enjoyable and satisfying for you as individuals and for the marriage.
Toucan Together is a free app for couples to grow and strengthen their relationship in a fresh and flexible way. Get started by taking your ‘Pulse’, a short, research-based quiz that gives you a map of your relationship in 7 key areas with personalised feedback and next steps. TAKE PULSE NOW