When the honeymoon is over...
The frustration and anxiety of the wedding is finally over and now it's time to settle into marriage. Now you may feel stuck, lost or unsure of your decision to marry, and that's how the trouble begins. Statically, marriages that end in divorce show the first signs of trouble within the first two years. Although most couples get through the first-year marriage blues just fine and go on to have healthy, long relationships. It's just getting past them that is the trick.
Challenge of the First Year Marriage Blues
Most newlyweds feel as if their marriage is just the next stage of dating and that life is going to be the picture perfect beginning of a blissful fairy tale one hundred percent of the time. Then reality sets in and these same newlyweds find themselves in need of counseling to overcome a multitude of marital hardships. Typically these roadblocks occur within the first year of marriage and, if gone unchecked and unrecognized, will eventually end the marriage before the two-year mark.
Reality is the killer of all fairytale marriages. The good news is that if couples prepare for the typical first-year marital challenges before committing to marriage, they can avoid divorce. Knowing what types of problems to expect in the first year will help couples build a stronger relationship that is focused on the long term commitment, regardless of challenges. Couples that have been married for 10 years or more say the reason their marriage lasted so long is that they knew about the one-year blues or at least the causes behind it before they got married. In short they didn't have to many illusions about what marriage was about before jumping into it.
If couples can recognize the symptoms of the first-year marriage blues early, they can repair most of the problems that arise. On the other hand, brides and grooms experience different types of post-wedding blues and fixing half the problem will produce only half the results. Newlyweds have to agree to address and repair the early issues in their marriage.
Symptoms of First-Year Marriage Blues
First-year marriage blues are typically feelings of depression, regret, rising financial stress and family tensions. This can tear your relationship apart. Couples feel these emotions at different intervals of the first year, but many signs of the first-year marriage rut appear right away and persist throughout the duration of the marriage. This is why it's so important to recognize and work on your issues right away.
Brides and grooms often question whether they've made the right decision in getting married. These are normal feelings that typically occur after the honeymoon ends and usually subside after the first year of marriage. If the feelings persist and are prominent, your first step to overcoming regret is to express them with a respected family counselor. This advisor can help you to work through your feelings with your spouse rather than lashing out.
The biggest problem newlyweds experience within the first year of marriage is financial tension. This is more apparent once the dust settles and the bills from the wedding come rolling in. It's much harder for new couples to work through this matter if one is more focused on it than the other. The stress will worsen as the marriage progresses.
How to Avoid First-Year Marriage Blues
Avoid first year marital problems by preparing yourself before the marriage. Talk to marriage counselors or clergy to help you identify these problems and the best way you can work through them to save your marriage. But more than anything, be a friend to your spouse and make sure that you expect the same. Know that in order for the marriage to work, you are forever on the same side.