I got together with my now husband, when I was only 17. So I missed out on grown up dating. Have to admit I do feel robbed! I didn’t get taken on dates to nice restaurants or anywhere else really! We played badminton at the local community centre, watched films at the cinema and got our rocks off in the back of his Renault Clio (in some truly horrendous countryside locations!).The most grown up date of ours came about after we had been together almost a year and we went to a TGI Fridays for Valentines day. I got drunk on two glasses of wine and saw his face go pale when the bill came and it was more than 30 quid! Nowadays a ‘date’ has to be scheduled like a mititary operation. Babysitters, work, tiredness and other engagements all come together like pieces on a chess board to halt your giddyup! We tend to go big with our date nights now resulting in major hangovers and even more tiredness. We will learn one day to just book babysitters so we can watch some telly in bed and be asleep by 10pm!
2 Outside Influence
After 15 years with my man (8 of them married) I feel like I can say with total authority that you don’t stay with them because it’s easier to do so. Some people have told me that because I got together young it means that I didn’t get a chance to discover what I really wanted. That what I wanted at 17 and what I want today at 32 is very diferent. And they are right! But to them I say, I’m not the same person I was at 17! So many things have changed that girl. The ideas and dreams she had back then have altered somewhat (I have realised I have no desire to live in New York and be academic!) My husband has changed massively too (unfortunatley he didn’t become a massive rock star and live the playboy lifestyle he so wanted!)
We have had many ups and downs. We were on and off for a period and went through a spell in our early twenties where we thought it was too much. Most of our friends’ relationships would last a few months then it would be onto someone new, so it was a rocky time within our circle of friends. And of course we both wondered if maybe the grass would be greener.
After we got married it was easier for a time, we had a lot going on personally and we needed each other to get through it. We also had lots of disposable income and had a pretty nice lifestyle separately as well as together.
Did we hold each other back? I’m going to be controvertial and say most definitely. I am not the person now I would be if I wasn’t with him. And he sure as shit wouldn’t be the same man he is today if he weren’t with me. But not in a bad way! I never for one minute resent what I have now. I hear people say that their partner makes them a better version of themselves. I’m not sure how I feel about that. Would my husband have settled down and had kids when he did? Would I have continued on in my current job if I didn’t have any responsibilities? Who can say. But people questioning your choices inevitibly puts doubt in your mind and makes you look at every aspect of your life. What a ball ache!
I have to be honest and say I have had moments when I look at my life and do the ‘what if‘ game. Those weeks where you feel bored. Wish for excitement and adventure that can never be real in your day to day life. I know deep inside the realities of it all but it doesn’t stop you having days where you want swept off your feet on a tuesday afternoon!
Love is tough. So many things get in the way. Is there such a thing as the perfect relationship? I’m not sure there is. Just what would that be like?! I feel like in this day of social media frenzy we are bombarded by peoples ideal lives being played out. So expectation of what constitutes the perfect life are everywhere. Women should be empowered, not staying at home. Everyone should be chasing their dreams. But what if you just dream of a quiet life at home?! Not the done thing in this feminist world. We are all for empowerment as long as it fits the current mold. Meet the stereotype or face a lot of questions about your choices.
I have to take a step back sometimes to see if what I want is what I really want or what I feel like I should want.
In a perfect world we would all be little angels who loved and respected each other and it would all be glorious. But actually sometimes honesty is over rated! If I were to be completely honest all of the time I would not only lose my marriage but most of my friends too! I tell my husband everything…well at least everything I think he needs to know. For instance I live by the philosophy of no secrets, no lies. So I would never outright lie to anyone. But perhaps omit certain things. (He NEVER needs to know how much I spend on the kids clothes 😂) We have a lot of close friends who are couples. I would not think it appropriate to discuss everything I might have learnt from a friend to my husband. Also when it comes to certain things that might be going on in the house if I were to be on hubbys case everytime a thought entered my mind we would come to blows too often. Some thoughts have to remain in your head. Spouting ‘you’re a dick’ too many times a week would be unhealthy. Obviously if feelings are building up then discussions have to be had but I think there’s a lot to be said for having a good inner monologue.
And not just the good kind. Jealousy is one of the ugliest emotions and luckily it isn’t something that is a natural instinct for me, but whenever it has hit me its pretty grim. It flares up unexpectedly and usually at a time when you are feeling a bit self concious anyway. I had a horrible episode a good few years back where I hated any menion of my husbands female colleagues. Having met a few of them I knew how nice they were but in my head I managed to make them slutty vixens who were out to entrap my man. He was working away lots. We had a lot going in and weren’t putting much into our relationship at the time and to be honest it was all just ticking away. The green eyes monster can just creep up now and then and I think its a good indicator of the strength of feeling there. Obviously it’s not a good thing if it becomes constant or if it goes all Dr Foster and gets out of hand – phone checking or stalking is out of bounds!
People think if you have been together for ages then you lose the spark but I don’t think that should ever be the case – at least not on a permenant basis. Of course no one stays full of pent up passion 365 days a year and work stress and kids can totally take the kettle off the boil somewhat. But I never want to get to a point when I’m so comfortable I don’t get the feeling like I want to rip his clothes of every now and then. I find it really sad when people tell me that sex isn’t important to them – it should be!
So with all the problems facing long term relationships how do I cope? Well over the last five years we have bought two homes, had two children , moved jobs and relocated. There have been stuggles. The usual daily grinds of who does the most around the house, who is having more time for themselves and annoyances that even though you are used to still can drive you up the wall. But we have become best friends over the years without meaning to be. I still get the boak when couples declare each other their best friends. Why don’t you have actual best friends? I wonder. But infact that is what we are to each other. We have been through so much and know that we are together out of choice. It’s not easy but at the same time we don’t have to work too hard to make it work. There’s no one I am more myself with or whom I would rather spend time with. No one else who would put up with me the way he does. He is the other half of me in so many ways and is as much part of my future as he is of my past. And that makes me happy.
How do you feel about your relationship?
Am I right?
What do you disagree with?
As always I love to hear from you all.