Your mom, your work friends, your best buds, your crazy brother, your husband or wife’s best friend, new friendships, your old (and sort of horrible) friend and of course, your significant other… they all want a good chunk of your time, but there really are only so many hours in a day, and so many days in a month – so how should your time be divided up? You can’t make everyone happy, but you can at least try!
Getting married and sharing a life together means spending a good amount of time together. But, you can’t please everyone, and most of the time , it’s easy to neglect the person closest to you – you’ll see each other at the end of the night anyway, right? The opposite happens just as easily as well - spending all your time together, just the two of you curled up at home or going on weekend adventures. Remember though, too much together time isn’t a good idea either.
When you get married, you’re gaining a new family and most of the time, a new set of friends. It should be expected that your other half is hoping you see his friends as your friends and vice versa. So, what if your husband’s best friend is a total sports-fanatic booze hound and invites you both over to watch the game with him and his new girlfriend, who you can just imagine what she’ll be like. Even if you think you won’t get along with her, or that a double date with his friend and new girl will be excruciatingly boring, give it a shot, especially since it’s important to your sweetie. You never know, you just might make a new friend – don’t make assumptions and give at least little piece of your social life to it.
What about that friend who drives you crazy? The one you know is going to piss you off at a gathering with all your friends. The one who always makes that sly comment, and you feel has never been truly happy for you since you got engaged, and throughout all successes in your life? But there’s something keeps you coming back for more. Maybe it’s because you’ve been friends since you were little kids, or you just have so much fun together sometimes, she/he is a great wing man, or your families are very close. Whatever the reason, marriage makes you realise who your real friends are. As tough as is sounds, it just might be time to end this “friendship” with your old friend. Life is truly too short to waste on toxic relationships that bring you down. Save that chunk of your time for someone more important in your life.
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And then there’s the friends who have been there thorough it all. The ones who lied in bed next to you while you cried your eyes out with each heart-break, brought you soup while you were sick, and stood next to you on your big day dressed in those way-too-expensive dresses and didn’t ever complain about how crazy you got about the details. But now that you’re married, it feels like you’re all so busy with your careers and partners. Somehow the inseparable crew has been separated and there’s barely time to squeeze in a lunch date with them one at a time, let alone a fun night out together.
If that’s the case, it’s definitely time to re-think your priorities. Just because you think they understand you’ve started a new business or hobby that’s taking up all your free time, or that you have in-laws and your husband/wife’s friends group to deal with, does not mean that they should get a smaller piece of your schedule. They are your best friends, they make you happy, so a good chunk of your time should be spent with them. Make it a priority to set aside at least one or two days a month to do the things you always did together, or new things!
And don’t forget about your family. You’re moved out, and not seeing them as much any more, they understand you’re married and starting a new life and a family of your own – its easy to get caught up in “being married.” But, they still are the most important people in your life. If you’re getting the, “I never see you anymore,” and “We miss you guys so much,” calls, it’s time to put in a little more effort. Make that weekly phone call to mom and dad, (or twice if you’re far enough away that you can’t make that birthday dinner). Make an effort during the big holidays too, divide them up between both sets of in-laws. These are the most important people to keep happy, and are also the easiest to forget about because they are family and will always be there. Again, life is too short to forget about or set aside the people who matter the most.
Finding a balance between time spend together, and time spent apart is crucial to the success of any marriage, and it’s not the same for any two couples – we all have different kinds of people and jobs to balance. The first year is always the hardest, as you become part of a couple but also learn to maintain a strong sense of yourself. What’s your middle ground?