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Dr. Wendy Walsh
When people ask me if marriage changes a relationship, I always respond with, “Well, I hope so! You can stop dating and start living your love.”
What is love anyway but an action word? And that action is a simple one — it is the act of giving. Love, simply put, means to give.
Married couples give each other the gift of care. They exchange care.
There is no longer any need to impress each other with gifts of courtship that advertise, even exaggerate, a partner’s potential. Now is the time to live that potential.
Marriage changes relationships in three clear areas, and in all areas we can grow through our commitment to our partner:
Married couples often say, “I love my partner, but I’m not ‘in love’ anymore.” And the loss of the early stage of romance sometimes is a surprise to couples.
But if you can go back to that meaning of love — to love your partner is to give — you will find a new kind of emotional excitement. Feelings of anticipation will be replaced with feelings of emotional security.
And now that you are out of the cloud of love’s delusion, where both people think the other is perfect, you are presented with a unique opportunity to make an intellectual commitment to the relationship.
We grow as people when we can put our relationship above our individual needs.
“Matrimony wasn’t designed
to be a life-long date.”
The hot and heady bed romps of the first year of love will become fewer and farther in between – no doubt about it.
But again, this is an opportunity to forge a new kind of sexual relationship with your spouse.
As you grow closer, you may feel safe enough to divulge your most private fantasies and become playful in bed.
What happens to your sex life after marriage is up to you. Will you fade into old sweat pants and a slow bed death, or will you still care for your body and your sex appeal? You have the ability to keep things hot.
Oh yeah, life is what happens when you are busy making other plans.
There will be day-to-day monotony and each of you will fall into comfortable roles. There may even be routine arguments and make-up sex.
You have become a team and you will get busy with your careers, parenthood, meals and laundry, however you divide up the work of a marriage.
Matrimony wasn’t designed to be a life-long date. It was designed because what two people can accomplish together is much greater than any individual can accomplish alone.
Married people have better health and greater wealth. And this is the gift of marriage you’ll receive when you settle down into intimacy and safety of a shared life.
Photo source: glamour.com.