Imaginale Design
Let's get real here.

Jose and I are doing pre-marital counseling. I highly recommend it to every couple. Well, he said something that felt like a taboo-coca-cola was just being opened -- fizzing it's truthful glory into the living room of this married couple. My thirst was quenched and I couldn't love my fiance any more at that second.

"Love brings out the worst in each other."

Oh my gosh, did you hear that? Mhm, they must have problems.

Um. NO. Let's step away from this very well known concept: He/She "should" bring out the best in you. While I am not here to rebuke that, I am here to tell you that YES -- love DOES bring out the worst in each other and guess what?! IT'S OKAY.

Why? Let me re-phrase what Jose said. When you are past the "honeymoon" stage of a relationship, you start to open doors to your emotions, flaws, and EVERYTHING you like to hide behind your friends in order to be polite. Yeah, you know -- the judgment. Let's not play coy. But past that line of politeness, guess what your partner sees? You. The beautiful you, the one-I-fell-in-love-with you, and the ugly you. The raw, this-is-who-I-am, you.

And when the arguments get nasty, we are overwhelmed with "Is this meant to be?" because you can't possibly be a "healthy" couple if you just fought the way you did. Of course this differs with the intensity, how often, and whether there is any improvement -- but that's another boat I'm not floating on today. There are couples who are graced with lighter fights, while there are others who fight as passionately as they love.

It's okay. You are letting someone get to know you so personally that you can't hide behind politeness and patience. See, that's the problem. We tend to be even harsher, meaner, and less patient with the ones we love most. WHY?! I mean, geez -- that just doesn't make sense. But it DOES. You love that person SO much that you want them to know exactly why that hurt you, why this pushes your buttons, and the whole how-dare-you-if-you-love-me-would-you-say/do-that. It boils down to one word: expectations.

You can imagine throwing in "wedding planning" and suddenly couples are finding the actual marriage part is setting in way before you say "I do." Cause guess what that "I do" also means? I do take who YOU are but know that it is not up to ME to change you. So when you are presented with the pretty and the ugly of your partner, it is now YOUR choice to accept and not expect. And this doesn't mean you can't desire for your partner to spend more quality time with you, to be less stubborn, to not get sassy easily, to care about their health, or to stop biting their cuticles.

As Andy Stanley put it: you can be the cheerleader or the referee in your relationship. And there lies the challenge -- to be the cheerleader even if you don't see results. To not think "well, I was cheering up until she/he is obviously not making any effort." It's not up to you.

Actually, that is what I admitted I wanted to develop in the pre-marital counseling. To put all of my desires into God, and to continually ask Him for the change I desire to see -- especially in myself! This way I am not cynical or display my "disappointment" in man (i.e. my partner) when my desires aren't met (which ALWAYS puts strain on your relationship!).

I hope this reaches people who struggle with allowing their partner or themselves to be good enough. Remember: You can only control two things: your attitude and your activity.

And speaking of, I'm working on applying that to the wedding. As APW put it best: "Because yes. We all know what happens when your invites are boring. People don't come to your wedding.

Oh wait. Clarification: assh*les don't come to your wedding. Which actually means... you win."

Happy Friday :) You are GREAT! You have every ability to be!
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2 Responses
  1. Jessica R. Says:

    I loved what you wrote! And props for the pre-marital counseling!! And it's very true, as a couple we do see the worst in each other, yet overlook because of the love that you have for that person. They have imperfections and we also have imperfections that they also have to overlook!! Lovely!!

  2. Jenn Says:

    Gahhh! Taylor and I fight like no other but we love just as hard! We're both sooooo stubborn and our personalities are so different. I chalk it up to the fact that he's a Gemini and I'm a Taurus, he doesn't really believe in all that stuff, but when you look at our traits it's dead on! Our relationship has had it's ups and downs and it's been a challenge, but ultimately in the end we make each other happy and that's all that matters. The way we see it is we'll be that old crotchety couple sitting in rockers on the front porch bickering about absolutely trivial things :)