First Year Woes

My little brother got married last week.  He’s 22 and his wife is 19.  Talking to my sister-in-law just before the wedding, I found myself having to correct some marriage views.  The sister-in-law’s brother got married 9 months ago… And his wife was there and she began a discussion on how the first year of marriage is the hardest… I laughed.  Being married 9 months, she has no frame of reference.  Granted, I have only been married 2 ½ years, but I cannot unequivocally say the first year was the hardest. 

It’s my belief that every year of marriage has its ups and downs.  Every year there will probably be a new challenge – a sick relative, unemployment, debt, children – something that will test a couple’s relationship.  If you believe that getting through the first year means smooth sailing thereafter, you’re in for a shock in the second, third, and so on.

In the first year, if you have not lived or slept together before you were married, I think there is a lot of adjustment.  There is learning the little habits, the things that make the other person tick.  There is the challenge of keeping the house clean and making dinners.  There is the challenge of learning that you can’t spend all your time playing video games when you have a wife.  But, I don’t think that it makes it the hardest year. 

But, maybe I’m wrong.  After all, while I have a bit more of a frame of reference, it’s limited compared to others who have been married longer.

So, what do you think?  Was the first year the absolute hardest?


10 thoughts on “First Year Woes

  1. I’ve been married for three years tomorrow (woo hoo) and I think you’re right when you say that every year has it’s challenges. This past year has been the hardest for us because of all of the life changes that went on (my mom passed away and we had a baby). I guess our first year wasn’t too tough because we were already living together so we knew each others habits.

    • I agree with Kasey (and you) that each year has its own unique challenges. I don’t remember the first year being hard, but it was different. You learn a lot about compromise and putting someone else’s needs before your own. Oh and my husband and I have been married for 3 years too (no experts, but no newbie either!)

      • Thanks for your comment D! It’s nice to know that I’m not going crazy and others think the same way as I do. We’re celebrating 3 years in March.. As I mentioned to Kasey, this past year was our hardest so far, but it was due to circumstances, not because of some kind of law that says the second year is the hardest. I think you’re completely right about the compromise thing – that’s what I was trying to impress on my sister-in-law.

    • Happy Anniversary Kasey!! :) I’m sorry it’s been a tough year for you. I can’t imagine going through all that in one year. Hope this next year is better! :)Congratulations on the baby as well.
      Funny, the last year was our toughest too, due to circumstances – the miscarriage, and having AMP’s brother living with us 10 months.

  2. We lived together, so maybe that’s different. I just wrote a blog about this very thing. But I absolutely don’t think that the first year is the hardest. And ours was pretty hard: I was pregnant, my husband was laid off, and we got a brand new puppy. I don’t want to be negative and say things will get worse, but I think we were happy newlyweds figuring “we’ll get there eventually.” Had these things happened 5 years in, I doubt we’d feel that way.

    • I’ve never lived with a guy before marrying AMP, so I don’t know if that really does make any difference.
      Still, that’s a lot of changes to go through in your first year of marriage – hope things are better! :) I’m planning on stopping by your blog next! :)

  3. I read this yesterday and really wanted to come back and comment. Forgive my tardiness. : )

    My hubs and are are definitely not experts–being married for three years–but we have had our share of difficult times. Before and after marriage. The first year was most definitely not the hardest, though it had its moments, and neither was last year, though it had its moments, or this year, though it had its moments.

    Marriage is what you make of it. If you deny selfishness and try to serve your partner (goes both ways) you will find your relationship is much easier. This is especially pertinent when you add a child, or two, to the mix.

    I went into marriage thinking it would be hard. You know what? It was much easier than I anticipated. Work? Yes. But what doesn’t require work? And at least this work has excellent benefits (ahem) and a perfect partner. The way I see it, I am much better in the relationship than out.

    • Thanks for your thoughts Amber. I totally agree.. It was easier than I expected, and the work is definitely worth all the effort. Even on the worst day, I can unequivocably say that I’m incredibly happy being married to AMP. And, I think every year has its moments, and no year is going to be perfect – but we need to cherish all the wonderfulness and not dwell on the not-so-wonderful.

  4. Just found your blog and love it. If I can add my 2 cents, I must say that this year (our sixth) has been the hardest, but it’s due to personal circumstances, among them my husband is back in school so we are on one income, had to deal with several family issues (on both our sides), we’re bored where we live and I’m getting baby fever but can’t have one until he’s out of school.

    I never lived with anyone before marriage, so the first year was wonderful; full of surprises! It was great despite the fact that we lived with his parents and I loved it. That’s a story for another day.

    I’m thankful that I have such a wonderful husband. We have just fought once in 6 years and it was about somebody else’s relationship. It’s all about good communication, compromise, sacrifice and LOVE, lots of it!!!

    • Thanks Paulina! :) Glad you like the blog.
      That’s exactly the point I was trying to make – that each year has its own circumstances, and some will be harder than others.
      I know what it feels like to have money/family/baby fever issues.. .My husband just finished school this past summer, so at least that’s behind us for now – but I’m still waiting for him to get on board with the baby idea. Hope your husband’s schooling goes well! :)
      Don’t know if I could have survived my first year living with either set of parents.. We had my husband’s brother live with us for the past ten months (he just moved out! Yay!) and it was probably one of the most taxing things for our relationship.
      Glad you have such a wonderful marriage! It seems rare these days.. But, I agree – gpod communication, compromise, sacrifice is absolutely necessary.. of course along with lots of love! :)

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