When you move hundreds of miles from most of your friends and family, the time you do get to spend with them becomes extra special. And we’ve been blessed with a lot of that lately. We spent the holiday weekend catching up with college friends, old roommates, old acquaintances, family, and church friends. We ate tons of food, had meaningful discussions, and really just enjoyed one another. Yet throughout the past few weeks, in interacting with other couples and doing life with them, it all seems to come back to one theme: We’re not failing.
In spending a few hours with some of our closest friends and family (which we haven’t done a lot of since we got married) it really opened my eyes to one universal relationship truth: all marriages are exactly the same. Some have been in effect for longer than others, some marriages take on extra duties (houses and children), some are still just getting used to living with another person. But the more you dive into the marriage of someone you love, the more you realize that it looks quite similar to what you’re living out on a daily basis. The routines are the same, the “you’re in trouble” looks are the same, even the conversations are the same.
And the more you’re around it, the more you start to realize that maybe you’re not doing so bad after all. Other couples bicker sometimes. They have recurring issues they’re trying to work on. They have intense discussions over simple things like groceries and dirty dishes and whether or not dinner is overcooked. Other girls get emotional and cry and (Kyle’s favorite phrase) have “freak out moments.” Other guys tune their wives out and it’s not actually so they can hurt their feelings. And most of the time these couples are actually very much in love.
As I was reflecting on it all this week, i really started to wonder if there really is something to this whole fellowship thing. The more you talk about the things you struggle with, the more likely you are to find a couple who will breathe a sigh of relief and say, “Really?? Us too.” The more you hear other couples talk about their relationships, the more you think, “If they worked through that together, we can work through this.” And maybe some divorces, instead of being the result of unhappiness in marriage, are just the result of two isolated hearts that need a little encouragement along the way. Maybe they just needed to know that none of us are perfect. Even in love.
Are you open about your struggles or do you feel like we have to pretend that everything is always perfect?