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A happily ever after begins in stories with the wedding, but not every marriage has that utopian course. Here are 10 things you can do (or not) for having one of your own.
They say that if your time flies with someone then you must have had more pleasant times than unpleasant ones with him or her. But time does not fly on its own. Especially when you are settling in with a new person in your life in every way that you can imagine.
Given that most of us are brought up with a conditioning that getting married is an inevitable part of life, the enormity of getting used to sharing your just about everything with that one person is often underrated. So here are ten ways to begin your ‘happily ever after’ compiled from experiences of my own and those of close family and friends:
A marriage brings two people with different histories, personalities and outlooks together for a lifetime. Of course, sustaining it is not easy for either. Even if you have courted your better half for a considerable period before tying the knot, be ready for surprises in the ‘gestation’ period. Observe it all. Discuss the ones that bother you. Give it time. Do not let minor hiccups in the beginning decide the fate of your lifetime.
If you feel the urge to quarrel about a phone call from your partner’s long lost friend or a comment from a distant in law, ponder on this – The chances of that person being of any considerable importance or proximity to either or both of you is close to zilch. Would you like to ruin one whole day of your life with the person closest to you on some random talk? Nothing to be enjoyed, I guess.
That said, even after a fight that would qualify for a title of ‘War of The Worlds’, resist the temptation of spewing out about it in front of the closest family member or friend. That would only cause embarrassment for your partner and yourself. A relationship has to ‘learn’ to grow, recover and blossom on its own, at least initially. That cannot happen if the work to be done is handed over to a third person. Of course, things would be different in case of unfortunate extremes like abuse or cheating. But minor disputes during the settling in phase can certainly be sort out by two grown up adults.
Even if you have had a late night fight and had to literally sleep with the enemy, do not keep lingering with it without any valid reason. Holding that grudge will only feed a vicious circle of rather irrational fights. But make sure not to pile up your concerns either. Whether it is an issue that needs a solution or plain venting off pressure. Release it and move ahead.
Not everyone is capable of saying “I am sorry” on face. But replacing it with gestures like dropping a ‘just like that’ message, a silly joke out of nowhere that guarantees laughter or a silent hug are no less than words seeking forgiveness. Acknowledge them. Let go and discuss. Simply waiting to hear those words might make the dispute worse.
Talk sense. Talk non sense. Sit close quietly to watch a short film. Have only your morning tea together if not all the meals. Fall asleep on the other’s shoulder once in a while. Write your mails and trim your nails in the same room together.
Physical proximity is an extra help to emotional connect. Jobs and kids do make that challenging. But it is doable.
Okay, so you bought five gifts for in laws on Diwali but your partner planned just three outings when your family when they visited. It isn’t a match! Nonetheless, bound to happen at some point in the first few years of marriage. The only thing that matters is that your partner stands beside your family just as you do in times of need. If you have that kind of gem as a spouse then trust me, you are blessed.
Life is not a bed of roses. Even roses have thorns! It might sound blunt but reality and responsibilities do take toll on romance, even though temporarily. Your spouse is not only your romantic partner but also your compeer on personal, financial and social fronts. In fact, hardly anyone would approve of a partner who prioritises his or her romantic needs over practicalities.
Yes absolutely, it is a bonus when spoken. But when you feel that you have not heard it of late, just recall why your partner stayed up all night so that you would not fall asleep while preparing for an interview. Or what was the need for the most relaxing head massage after a row of stressful days at work. Let your partner take your feelings for him/her granted for a while!
Two perfect people do not always make a perfect couple. Most of the times, that perfection is achieved when their imperfections are compensated mutually. Couples fight, couples goof up. If they emerge from it with some learning and experience about one another then each such event is a step towards achieving that perfection.
In the end, a happy marriage is about being in all of it together. Physically, emotionally, financially. In combination and in different proportions. It is about growing together. At times, growing out of something together. If not an exotic destination then at least an exciting journey together!
Published here earlier.
Image source: Flickr, for representational purposes only.