Are Different Definitions Messing with your Marriage?
a few days back, my husband and i were getting ready for bed (which now occurs at 8:30pm because we have a baby). since i can remember, we do this thing where whoever gets to the bathroom first to brush their teeth will put toothpaste on the other person’s toothbrush.
i noticed that my husband had already brushed his teeth but my little toothbrush remained bone dry and without anti-cavity gel on its bristles. i jokingly said to him, “well…i guess our honeymoon phase is officially over,” as i squeezed toothpaste on to my own toothbrush.
he immediately sat up in bed and wondered why on earth i would ever say such a terrible thing! i laughed but he was super serious.
this lead into a discussion of whether or not we are still in the “honeymoon phase” of our marriage. we have been together for almost 10 years and married since september 2010. according to google, a typical ‘honeymoon phase’ lasts a few months to maybe a year or two after getting married.
he was arguing that we are absolutely still in the honeymoon phase and i was saying that now that we are parents – i feel like it officially passed. he was getting upset and almost offended that i didn’t think we were still in this phase of our relationship and i couldn’t believe that he actually thought we still were. this carried on for a while until i took a step back and asked him an important question:
“how do you define the honeymoon phase?”
game changer question here people.
to him, the honeymoon phase is all about feeling excitement and adventure with your spouse.
to me, the honeymoon phase is a time when you discover more about each other. you are in the exciting time of exploring each other physically, emotionally and mentally. there is still a mystery to it all.
i wasn’t in agreement with him because to me, we are on such a deeper level in our relationship now, that according to my definition we couldn’t still be in that phase. i mean, once your spouse literally pulls your child from your loins – most stones have been unturned.
however to him, our marriage is still full of excitement and adventure so he was hurt that he didn’t think i felt that too.
i share this with you not to get into a debate of what the true definition of the honeymoon phase is but rather to call out the fact that we may be defining things differently than our partner.
next time you are in a disagreement with your spouse – think about whether there could be a misunderstanding when it comes to defining certain words or phrases. this could be when one of you says, “i need you to spend more time with me” – ‘more time’ is subjective. or maybe “i want to feel more intimate with you” – what does intimacy look like for each of you? or heck, it could even be “leave me some damn girl scout cookies!” well, how many cookies??? 1, 3 or 7?
take the time to pause and further expand on what you are needing or wanting so that different definitions don’t mess with your marriage!
i would like the record to state that yes, according to my husband’s definition, we are certainly still in the honeymoon phase! plus, taking a honeymoon every year helps the case too!