66/365: Learning to Be Married

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    Thursday, 31 July 2008.
    (Explore #78)

    I got married in April. If you'd told me 10 years ago that being married was a completely different animal than living with your partner unmarried, I would not have believed you. In fact, I don't think I would have believed you just 6 months ago. I am slowly, fitfully, sometimes reluctantly learning to accept that it's true.

    Mind you, I don't mean to diminish cohabitation. I'm a firm believer in it. I think it's almost always the smartest thing you can do when you start thinking, "Yeah, this might be the right person for me." But, in my experience, when you live with a partner, you still maintain a sense of mine and yours, whether it's in regards to money, belongings, families, or anything else. And one of the things I was totally unprepared for was the sudden and surprisingly profound shift to ours. Where is the line drawn? This house is ours. This couch is ours. These cats are ours. These DVDs are ours. But this laptop is mine. And this cellphone is mine. And if I bought a pack of gum, I'm pretty sure it would be mine. This might all sound ridiculous, but really, it's a hard concept to make peace with when you've been on your own, single or partnered, for 39 years prior to getting married.

    It's not all difficult, though. There are plenty of wonderful things to get used to. Like the achingly sweet feeling of missing him when he's out of town, and the thrill of welcoming him back; the smell of him on the pillows and blankets, and the smell of his cooking drifting through the house; and most of all, the constant presence of warmth and contact. It's pretty great.

    And, of course, all of the above is just one of many reasons our government shouldn't be about the business of denying this wonderful thing to anyone based on the gender of the person they fell in love with. Everyone should have the opportunity to feel this way.

    JMPrice11, ~*Leah*~, Lucky-V, and 5 other people added this photo to their favorites.

    1. sictransitgloria 80 months ago | reply

      This is such a great picture--- and I love your very honest and sweet description of married life!

    2. chaseyandcash 80 months ago | reply

      great picture...great description.....I'm the opposite...I'm single for the first time since I was 19 years old! I'm 34, single and mom to a 1 year old and a 3 1/2 year old! Everything is MINE! The house is now MY house, the car is MY car....the only thing that is still OURS is the kids! Any shift in life is difficult. I hope to shift back to married someday....I really loved it!

    3. JMPrice11 80 months ago | reply

      Great photo and I am right there with you! I got married in May and though we didn't live together before (and in fact lived 1,000 miles apart!), it is certainly different in both wonder and difficult ways!

    4. rose_peacock 80 months ago | reply

      i have always tried to explain to people how that happens, most don't believe or understand unless they go thru it themselves...it's a totally different world...
      i'm single now but co~habitating...and i am not sure how it would be different if we married, i just know that it would...

      Great shot! and your description is perfect!

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      Seen in a discussion of the group "Flickr Group Roulette" (?)

    5. ~ maitexu ~ 80 months ago | reply

      LOVE it..and love what you wrote. So true.

    6. ~*Leah*~ 80 months ago | reply

      Very true. I got married pretty young and I think that helped with my transition. I didn't have very many years of "mine". (However, my cats are mine no matter how long we've been married :P)

    7. ☆ Tabrel 80 months ago | reply

      I just can't understand why people that love each other want to ruin it with marriage. My last girlfriend and I were together for 10 years, and we are still best friends. And Gays and Lesbians have it made right now, once they HAVE to be married to get benefits they are going to realize they messed up big time.

      But once the Boomers are gone marriage will mean a lot less anyway.

    8. camillesau 80 months ago | reply

      I want to join with everyone who wrote and say brava. The photo grabbed me and the words held me. Cool

    9. Lucky-V 80 months ago | reply

      Your description distills those moments of comfort so well. I miss it (but I don't miss him!)

    10. redheadjokes 80 months ago | reply

      That pic - and learning to stay married.
      *shaking my head* Mark and I got married amidst 6 kids between the two of us, 2 difficult ex'es and a third ex. Looking back, I think we made our relationship about keeping our heads above water.

      Little did I know that when we reached a sudden financial security, empty nest, my retirement, how it would make staying married a whole other ball game *now thinking of your game costume*.

    11. eyesogreen 80 months ago | reply

      I so agree with everything you said...........you hit the nail on the head. I lived with a boyfriend and I lived with a husband, and to be honest I like the boyfriend thing better. I'm selfish I like saying this is MINE =).

      Great selfie.

    12. .laurie. 80 months ago | reply

      gosh, I couldn't agree with you more. And you know NOBODY tells you that marriage is hard or that it changes everything until AFTER you've already gotten married. lol That's what happened to me anyway. I love being married and I love my husband, but I miss the "mine!"

      --
      Seen in the interestingness archives. (?)

    13. winterswan 80 months ago | reply

      Very nice photo. And your words about marriage are totally true.

    14. sarahmonster 80 months ago | reply

      :) I like your sentiment but I dont think marriage is the same across the board. For me, being married to my partner was the same as living with him... its always been easy and everyhing has always been mine ;) (except the junk I dont like and keep threatening to throw out if it doesnt get tidied). But we wanted to make things easy for ourselves and get married. (Long international story here...)

      In Scotland, gay couples can get married, and to me, that isn't "special" :) its just normal and what should be available for anyone and it is. Weddings on the other hand- well gays can throw a party!

      -your picture here tho (back to the subject) is beautiful- I love the position of your hands the the rings are just lovely- so simple and elegant

    15. Hammonds Babies 80 months ago | reply

      I've been married for 5yrs (as of this month) and somehow, the gum always becomes ours rather than mine =)

      Lovely shot!

    16. faygate 80 months ago | reply

      Marriage is an interesting thing. You think it's going to be easy, especially when you've lived with someone for a while, but we all change. When you are married you have to learn things as you go along, it's a compomise some of the time, for sure, but every day is different. Once you throw kids and families in the whole thing changes again! The key is to spend time together and also to respect the fact that sometimes the other person needs some time out on their own as well as yourself.

      Anway, that's enough rambling from me (that seems to be my mood toady). This is a lovely picture and I'm so glad you're showing off some wedding rings, because it means I can nobble you to become a member of my little group

    17. ericschoon [deleted] 80 months ago | reply

      great shot... nice writeup

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