When anyone first gets married, it can quite literally give you “all the feels.” Everything from, “OMG, this is what I’ve been waiting for my wholeeee life” to “Oh no, what did I just do?!” Marriage can bring along a lot of excitement and joy, but also a lot of anxiety and fear. If you have felt any or maybe ALL of these things, you’re not alone. Today, Kim is in the hot seat – sharing his experience – of 3 very different stages he went through during our first few years of marriage. In fact, he is going to share that these 3 phases men go through when they get married. And just maybe, you did or ARE going through them too.
By the end of this blog, you’ll walk away feeling encouraged and inspired no matter what phase you’re in and you’ll know exactly how to get through the phases that feel like they last forever. Let’s dive in!
Phase 1: “Wow, I AM MARRIED!!!!”
You’ve now made it to the “adult club.”
Your entire life, you’ve been searching for the “one”, and now you’ve finally found him/her. Kim remembers waking up and thinking, “Wow, cool. I am married to the love of my life.” You’re on cloud 9 and seeing life through rose-colored glasses. Everything feels like a blessing and nothing can touch us.
The first few weeks become such an adjustment to actually LIVING one of your top dreams of your life. You are now married. You have now chosen your life partner. You have found your true love and now you get to live your entire life with them.
Phase 2: “Oh, F. I am married.”
Then, the sh*t gets real. This will not go away. SHE will not go away.
Wow, this is it. This is for life. This is for always. I HAVE to now make this work. You realize that something is here to stay, and now the real adulting begins. You have to show up, become mature and do whatever it takes to make it work for life.
You’ve now made a lifelong commitment.
This is the essence of what makes it different than just dating someone.
During one of our first, more “challenging” convos, because we’re married, we decided…
- Walking away…isn’t an option
- Not talking about it…isn’t an option
- Ignoring the problem…isn’t an option
Premarital coaching set us up for success in our marriage.
We were “warned” in our premarital counseling that THIS stage would come. The stage where the going gets tough or the tough get going. Kim shares, “I asked for it. I wanted this. Now what are you going to do? How are you going to make this work? You love this person, she loves you back. So, let’s roll up your sleeves and do this.”
Kim remembers looking at his wife during this stage and said, “Ok, this is it. WE have to make this work. We have to find a way to make sure we will always remain a “we.” This wasn’t easy and he didn’t feel like working harder…but, he realized he cannot NOT speak up.
During this stage, when Kim felt this nudge to share something with his wife – and he knows he has to express it – not because I “don’t” love you, it is because I DO love you, and I honor us, therefore, I share.
He realized it’s not just about this one conversation, but we have the responsibility, that in 3,000 conversations that we are still good. He owes it to his marriage to share, openup and speak freely – even if his wife doesn’t like it.
We must speak up because we cannot lose ourselves in marriage. Since this is “forever,” we need to make sure we share our truth and who we are – and my spouse deserves to know who I really am. We can do so in the right time, and be kind and humble, but still share, even when it’s uncomfortable.
Phase 3: ” Wow, YES! I am married. THIS is what it’s supposed to be.”
Once Kim found out what we were doing was working, he felt at ease. THIS is what it’s supposed to be. The more it works, the better it gets.
And the better our marriage gets, the better our lives get. One feeds into each other – an upward spiral! He shares he “couldn’t have imagined this kind of love would be possible – to actually find it inside marriage. It’s awesome to see my marriage nourished and thriving. “
Kim knows there will be more difficult conversations down the line – but now he says, bring it on. It’s because he now knows that we have what it takes to work through them and we will come out stronger and better than we were before.
Covid taught us that this “too shall pass.” That no season lasts forever. We get the opportunity to go through challenges and come out better than we were before.
The key is to not get stuck in one of these phases. Allow it to ebb and flow.
These are phases that you’ll go in and out of during your entire marriage.
During one season you could feel totally pumped & in love, and then others, where you choose to love because you vowed and committed to do so. Sometimes, things need to go through a winter – some things need to die. We need to let go of. Things that maybe served us before but no longer do. They often can be like a loop. Sometimes in one conversation or for months. As sexy as the first stage can be, it’s one we don’t miss.
Now, when we ebb back and forth between the stages, we now love that our love is deeper.
We don’t want to go back to the first one, where we hadn’t suffered any storms. Now, we are stronger because of going through that middle stage. And because we are stronger, we are better parents, co-workers, and even neighbors. We LIVE LIFE in the honeymoon phase (and you can too, get our 3 specific tips right here.)
Feeling stuck at Phase 2 & feeling like your marriage is more daunting than you expected?
Does it feel like this season will never end?
Take a very close look at where you and your spouse are and what you’re working with – get super clear on who you are. Every marriage is unique – with two unique people. Get clear on who it is that we are, what it is that we need.
We often learn to live without our needs – however in order to have a healthy marriage, we need to learn to own and to meet our needs and our spouses.
Come grab intentional help in this specific area, discover the right questions to ask and learn to navigate these complex feelings – join our FREE Vowkeepers community! We’d love to have you there!
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-Kim & Cheyanne