Marriage Myth #2: Marriage Is About Compromise
Marriage makes you one part of a whole, but this doesn’t mean you’re no longer fully you or that the answer to everything is compromise. Despite what popular thought thinks, marriage is NOT 50/50. In Marriage Counseling, we teach that if one spouse is left losing, no one wins.
You may not realize it, but most of our healthy friendships apply this 50/50 principle. You do your part and I’ll do mine. However, your marriage is not a friendship relationship. And while we spend most of our time with our spouse, they’re not our “best friend” – they’re our partner.
A marriage relationship works completely different than that of a friendship. You make a vow to stay committed to each other, even when you don’t see eye to eye. Even when things don’t work out 50/50. If a marriage is based on the same principles as a friendship, it inevitably won’t make it. Because marriage is more than just 50/50 – it’s a 100% commitment.
Marriage Is A 100% Commitment
So why doesn’t compromise within a relationship? Well, for starters, a friendship isn’t committed in the same way a marriage is. Yes, we remain loyal to our friendships, but when things get rough both parties can – and are expected – to take some time away to cool off. In a marriage, this isn’t the case. Your lives are entwined. When you married this person you became one. You problems are their problems and their problems yours. If you have children, you are still required to work as partners to care for them even when you’re angry at each other. It’s a 100% commitment to one another. When one partner is forced to compromise, both partners lose. It’s simply impossible to live in the same house with the same person and divide everything down the middle. 50/50 splits are generally reserved for divorce.
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