Ahhh……relationships, they can be the best, or alternately, the worst things in our lives. I see couples in my office all the time with relationship issues. If you’ve ever been in a relationship, you understand they can be challenging and they can be wonderful. Pick an adjective and you can probably use it to describe relationships.
When we consider how much of our lives we devote to relationships, it always amazes me when people share how little time they spend developing them, especially marriages/unions. I have had people tell me they got married within a couple of weeks of meeting and the average is knowing each other less than 12 months before marrying. Then as time passes and they really start getting to know each other, problems emerge. And people are surprised by this!!
I have asked this question of just about every client with a marriage/union issue: why did you get married so quickly? I ask this, particularly, when the partners only knew each other for less than a year. If you are planning to spend the rest of your life with somebody, what is the rush? Why did you need to tie the knot so quickly? Usually the answer I get, regardless of the age of person I ask, is “I don’t know” tied with “It seemed like a good idea at the time.”
I realize we live in a society that has valued being in a relationship more than being single for centuries. I realize that we are social creatures with a need for affiliation with others. I also realize that relationships can make life more fulfilling. But, what’s the rush? Why are we in such a hurry? Many, many years ago, I had two friends and one was planning to get married in October. My other friend managed to get married in August and proudly proclaimed she was the first one in our friend group to get married! She, sadly, was also the first one to get divorced. So what was gained by rushing to the alter?
When we are looking for a life partner, try to remember that there is no rush! This isn’t a competition, it’s a commitment! Take your time, truly get to know each other and you may find that the relationship that culminates from this investment is better than you even hoped for in the beginning.