Us Against The World: 11 Things I Wish Someone Told Me About Marriage

by Liz Spornick

When you get engaged, be prepared for everyone around — from friends to strangers — to tell you, “The first year of marriage is the hardest.” They just won't shut up about it.

I'm here to tell you it's not true.

I mean, yes, I am sure that some couples have a really hard time adjusting to married life — especially couples who haven't known each other long or haven't lived together — but in the grand scheme of things, if you're ready to stand up in front of your closest loved ones and pledge your life, love and finances to someone you genuinely love, chances are you can figure out who should unload the dishwasher without it becoming a thing.

I've been married for a year and a half, and with so many of my friends engaged and knee-deep in Pinterest, I've been thinking about the things I wish I knew about getting married before it happened — from wedding planning to actually, you know, being a wife.

So, in honor of paying it forward, these are the top 11 things I wished someone told me about marriage.

1. The first year is the absolute BEST.

You guys did it, and it's awesome. Don't go into the first year of marriage prepared for the worst because it'll turn into a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Remember, if sh*t hits the fan, you're married now, and you promised to weather storms together. That is exactly what you'll do; there really is strength in numbers.

2. You're probably more selfish than you realized.

When you're dating or even engaged, your life is still just that: YOURS. After you say “I do,” you're legally bound to consider your husband or wife's needs, wants and life as just as important as yours, if not more.

For me, this has been a bit of an uncomfortable spotlight on areas in my life where I still think as “me” instead of “we.”

3. Nothing changes.

This one only applies if you're shacking up in sin before tying the knot (raises hand!).

Honestly, when the wedding and honeymoon are over, you'll walk through your front door, unpack your bags and your life will go right back to how it was before the wedding.

It's kind of surreal. If you're me, that means your husband automatically turns on ESPN and you start catching up on your favorite fashion blogs. Same stuff, now you just have a different name.

4. And that is why it's awesome.

To me, how quickly my husband and I fell right back into our daily routine just reinforced how getting married was the absolute right decision for us.

Our life didn't need any drastic changes. It would have been super weird if all of a sudden, we were having romantic, candlelit dinners and slow dancing in the kitchen every single night.

That stuff happens, but there is something to be said for looking around at your normal, boring married life and knowing you wouldn't change a thing about it.

5. Your friendships will suffer, especially with your single friends.

It gets increasingly difficult to relate to your friends' Tinder nightmares no matter how hard you try, and they might think you're too busy with your new husband to care.

Things get weird and awkward and I haven't figured out a solution. Holler at your girl if you have one.

6. You'll have your “Holy sh*t, I'm married” moment, and it probably won't be at the altar.

Maybe it's when you go through the mind-numbing process of changing your name or when you make your first big purchase together, but eventually, you'll realize that you are married, and it's okay if it trips you out a bit.

7. You both don't need to be strong at the same time.

Sometimes, you'll be up and he'll be down. Other times, you'll need him way more than he needs you.

Realizing you trust someone enough to be strong for you is one of the best things about being married.

8. People will, all of a sudden, treat you like an adult.

I was, by every single definition, an “adult” for many years before I even met my now husband, yet the second we got married, we both noticed a change in how people treated us.

It was as if all the other big girl and big boy decisions we'd made in our lives up until this point didn't matter as much.

9. You're probably spending too much on your wedding.

Seriously, reign it in and put that money toward something else, like travel or a down payment on something.

You won't care that you had the fanciest tablecloths after all is said and done, and nobody attending your blessed event will care, either.

10. You'll become fiercely protective of your marriage and your spouse.

It's family now, and nobody messes with your family.

11.You'll finally, finally be able to relax.

No more swiping left. No more dates from hell. No more ghosting, breakups and games.

You can let out the breath you've been holding in since you first discovered the opposite sex, and for the first time, relax. Your heart is finally safe.