So remember how I am working on a degree in Family Studies, studying all relationships that come with that, and becoming an expert on how to have a good marriage? Yeah, well just because I’m gaining knowledge, it doesn’t mean it’s easy to apply to my own marriage ;)
On a daily basis I find myself learning something neat about normal family functioning, and how to handle relationships. And of course, when I’m learning all of it, I think of the various relationships I have that apply to that idea, and it helps me understand and remember the concept better. And then I’m given a better idea of how to improve that relationship. Of course, the relationship I think about the most is the one with my husband, so I’m always correlating situations in our marriage to a new concept I learn. And then I try to use the concept or tool I’ve learned when we have a disagreement or a stressful situation come up. The outcome doesn’t always come out well though, haha. Probably because the intention is there but I didn’t execute it properly, or our interpretations differ and create different responses. Complicated, huh?
The textbook approach
I get frustrated when that happens because I think, “I’m learning so much that can help us; but it’s not helping us in this or that.” Everything makes sense on paper, or when I review it in my mind, or give advice to others, but I have a hard time applying it in the moment. There’s so many emotions going, and situations can come up so fast. How do you take time to stop and think about where to go next, or what to say next? How annoying would it be if I were to say, “Hold on, let me pull out my textbooks and look up how this situation should properly be handled, and I’ll tell us what each of us did wrong, and about the proper way to handle it, is!” Haha I can’t imagine that going over very well. I don’t know, maybe some people do that, and maybe that is a good idea, haha.
I’m just realizing that there’s a difference between learning and teaching others about relationships, versus applying that knowledge correctly in our own lives. While most researched ideas of how to approach crucial conversations and other problems in marriage are fairly accurate, not every approach works for every individual or couple. We all have our own thoughts and feelings that can create different interpretations and outcomes. So I’ve decided that all we can do is our best, and keep trying. Trevor and I had a kind conversation about this the other day, and we realized that we just have to be patient with each other and keep trying when problems come and we have a hard time solving them.
It’s a simple idea, but Trevor said to me, “I know we aren’t perfect, but we have a wonderful marriage and I think we make a great team.” :) I’m trying not to forget that when there are difficult marital moments, because after all, they are just moments. Compared to all the good moments we have, it’s nothing, right? I also think right now is a time of trial and error, in a way. We are still understanding how each other’s mind works, what to do, and what not to do. So maybe it’s inevitable that there will be mistakes made. I’m grateful that Trevor is really patient with me in my flaws and weaknesses. He’s definitely a blessing in my life! I guess I’m just telling myself not to be too hard on myself, so I hope you tell yourself the same thing!