“Just because someone shares advice with you — no matter how well meaning — doesn’t mean it’s any good.” ~ source
I thought my first post engagement blog post would be about something blissful but you can’t trust this inspiration of mine. Instead of flowers and dresses, my inspiration has come from the overwhelming amount of marital advice I’m getting. I’m sure every African young woman knows exactly what I mean.
I am all for receiving advice from those who have gone before me and those who haven’t. After all, everyone has something to teach and why learn from experience when you can learn from the experiences of others. But….“Just because someone shares advice with you — no matter how well meaning — doesn’t mean it’s any good.”
What is getting under my skin is the remarkable amount of “pander to his ego if you want your marriage to work,” “men are like babies,” advice I’m getting. Almost all of that advice is from women too. I can count on one hand the number of people who have talked about a relationship being reciprocal, mutual respect and what I should expect from my future husband. Seriously? Even worse are the ones whose line of advice is along the lines of “of course, he will cheat. He just has to respect you when he does it.” How can those two things appear in one sentence. It’s getting a little hard to just smile sagely and nod.
I think it’s only right to save a newly engaged woman such large does of cynicism is it not? Surely that’s not asking too much? After all, I got enough of that when I was single. “Don’t rush to get married, you will just be miserable.” “Marry a white man. African men are no good.” (shoot me now). “Enjoy your freedom now. You’ll miss it when you are married.” The list is endless…
I thank God for the few happily married folks I know. The ones who don’t need to tell me what marriage is about. The ones who have shown me that marriage is not easy, in fact, sometimes it’s flippin’ hard, but it can be amazingly beautiful too. The ones who show me that this is not about running someone else’s race. Instead, it’s about running yours and your partner’s together. The ones who believe and respect each other’s right to stand up for what matters. The ones who put God first. The ones who make sure the good outweighs the bad. Who don’t let their hard times darken the world around them and the soul within them. The ones who laugh with each other. Cry. Start over. Believe. Hold hands. Fight for their love. The ones who make that conscious decision to love their person every day. The ones who make marriage work for them. The ones who have given me the best marriage advice without needing to say a word.
PS – I should probably find a way to separate wedding chit chat from my regular blogging. I’m just not sure how yet. Maybe a separate blog for wedding related things or a different theme that allows for tabs?