8 Things Single People Believe About Their Married Friends That Are Totally Not True
Sometimes people talk about married couples and single people as if they are completely different species with absolutely nothing in common, which makes no sense to me whatsoever. A lot of single people will eventually be married people. All married people were once single people (and, who knows? Some might be single people again some day). So why the gulf? Sure, there are insensitive married people out there (typified by those Bridget Jones dubbed “Smug Marrieds”), who like to lord their married-ness over their single friends, a behavior which, I would argue, is a sign of their deep insecurity. At the same time, there are single people out there who are horrified by “stick-in-the-mud” married folks, and who aren’t afraid to let everyone know it (including their married friends).
But I think for most people, at least, the distance between being friends when you’re both single and when one of you is married is not insurmountable. Now, in my case, I followed a fairly predictable pattern: I used to be a single person with only single friends, then I was a single person with married friends, and then about two years ago I became a married person with single and married friends. I did not find that my newly married status rocked my social world, but I did find that friends started making certain assumptions about who I am now and what I want, simply based on the fact that my boyfriend became my husband. These assumptions weren’t mean, necessarily, just really strange to me. Did I transmogrify into an alien at some point during the wedding? Why would they assume everything is different now? I’m asking.
The general lesson here is one that applies in most walks of life: Don’t make assumptions about people based on labels. If you’re single, and your friend has recently become a “married,” here are 8 assumptions to avoid:
1. Now it’s all about the babies
Newly married couples usually have about three hours between saying “I do” and hearing “So, when are you having kids?” But a lot of married couples have no interest in having kids now, or in the immediate future, or ever. So don’t assume that your friend is now going to be obsessed with babies. Maybe someday she will be, but the maternal instinct isn’t a light switch that got flipped the second she said her vows.
2. We never have fun any more
Many people fear commitment because they worry that committing means that they’re lives will be over and they’ll never have fun ever again. But that’s simply not true. People in committed relationships can still do fun, impulsive, crazy things, even – gasp – if they’re married. So keep inviting you’re married friends to go do fun stuff; they might just be up for it.
3. We think you need to get married
There are, undoubtedly, married people out there who are completely tone deaf when it comes to their single friends, and who make smarmy comments to them about how “you just have to be patient” and how “I just wish you could find someone, too!” Blech. I get it.
But not every married person thinks this way. If someone is actually a good friend, she or he will not suddenly start thinking that you need to get married, too, or that you need marriage to be happy.
4. We want to be with each other every second
Yeah, when you get married, you commit to be with the same person forever and ever and all that. That doesn’t mean, however, that your married friend never wants time away from her new spouse, so keep inviting her to hang out, just the two of you. I bet she’ll appreciate it.
5. We must be sick of each other
The flip side of “You must never want to hang out with anyone else” is people’s assumption that, now that we’re married, my husband and I must be bored of each other. The spark is gone, and now we’re just each other’s old ball and chain. That’s not true. Married people married each other for a reason – which is usually that they like each other an awful lot. That connection doesn’t disappear, nor does the “magic” die. The reasons that a couple got together in the first place are all still their after they say their vows.
6. The sex is over. Now we snuggle up to our commitment.
Single people often assume that married people never have sex, which is just … not true. Come on, people. We’re married. We’re not dead.
7. Our romantic lives are simple now
Our culture focuses so much on finding the “One” that it’s easy to assume that once the wedding is over, all our romantic worries are gone for good, and our romantic lives will never be frustrating or complicated again. But married relationships—just like any other kind of human relationship—keep evolving over time. Every marriage has its ups and downs. Don’t simply assume that, because your friend is married, she’s never conflicted or confused.
8. EVERYTHING HAS CHANGED. FOREVER.
Sometimes single people worry that when their friends get married, nothing will ever be the same again. And, to a certain extent, they’re right. Things do change when a couple gets married. But a lot of things also stay the same, so don’t write off you’re newly married friends without giving them and yourself sometime to figure out how their ‘blessed union’ affects your friendship.
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