I’m going to tell you a secret today that just might blow your mind.
Your marriage is normal.
It’s true. No matter what you might be thinking, -that it should look like Bob and Jan’s, or David and Mindy’s.
You get to decide what “normal” looks like in your marriage.
It’s interesting to me when my clients will say, “Well, we do …. but I know we should…..” WHY?
What works for Larry and Amy is not necessarily what will work for you!
Early on in our marriage, I realized that my husband and I had such polarized views regarding money, that I made the decision to have my own accounts, and manage my own finances.
For many years, I had a lot of shame about that. I had thoughts like, “This is not what normal couples do. We should be able to mesh our finances and agree about issues surrounding money.”
That thought was painful. It made me feel like we were wrong.
That thought wasn’t the least bit helpful because the more I thought it, the more I believed that there was a problem with us being together.
My clients will ask me things like, “How often do normal couples have sex?”
“Isn’t it wrong if we have to spend that much time away from one another?”
“Isn’t marriage supposed to be easier than this, maybe it’s a sign that we’re not meant to be together.”
“Shouldn’t we split the chores this way or spend equal time with our in-laws, etc… how do other people figure this out?”
The definition of normal is, the usual, average, or typical state or condition.
But here’s the thing, who gets to decide what normal is?
If we allow other people to determine the answer to this question for us, we give them the power to declare us, “abnormal.”
I don’t know about you, but I’m saying, no thanks, to that.
There is a reason humans want to feel “normal.”
Our lower brains are programmed to crave inclusivity. Back in the day when we were cavemen, isolation meant danger. Acceptance by the group meant warmth, safety and protection.
When we feel separate or different from the group, our lower brains literally fear death.
But here’s the great news! We don’t have to be ruled by our lower brains anymore.
If our marriage looks different from that of our friends, it simply means that we’ve found what works for us, and that’s a good thing!
Do you sleep in separate bedrooms because he snores? Excellent! So good that you’ve found a way to get the sleep that you need.
We don’t have to make our differences mean there is a problem.
They’re only a problem when we waste our time comparing.
You only see each other on the weekends?
You take care of the cars, and he does the the dishes and laundry?
You take separate vacations because you like different things?
Fantastic! You are two unique and incredibly worthy human beings, who are finding the best and most effective way to live, love and stay together.
Congratulations, you are as normal as you decide that you are. And if the two of you decide you like being a little abnormal,- well that’s an option too!
Just ask yourself this question, “What do I want to think about us, that makes me feel the happiest?”
Once you find that thought, practice thinking it over and over, every day.
That, my friend, will be your new “normal.”