You are officially Mr and Mrs now, and blissfully in love. There’s a feeling of surrealism that you’ve actually gone ahead and gotten hitched to another person. You’re embarking on a new journey with a partner beside you – you’re now husband and wife. You’re on cloud nine, thinking that you’re going to be the best married couple to ever walk the earth. However, reality has a way of bringing down from your cloud residence faster than you can say ‘hitched’!
A marriage is when two people from diverse backgrounds come together to form a bond, share a household, possibly till death parts them. What advice for newlyweds comes in handy a few weeks, or even months down the line, is that marriage is held together with a ton of adjustments, compromises, and the art of diplomacy, on both your parts. No need to be scared; we’re here to guide you through this time of adjustment.
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Here are the essential pieces of advice for newlyweds that will help you navigate the initial days of your marriage in as smooth a manner as possible.
1. You’ll need to make adjustments
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Prepare yourself for some major adjustments. You were your own person before you met your partner, and you still are, no doubt about it. However, there are bound to be things that you don’t like about each other. It might be something trivial like the way he leaves the toilet seat up, or the way her hair clogs the drain, which she doesn’t bother cleaning.
You’ve both lived separate lives before tying the knot, and will always have your own personalities that you carry with you forever. However, you need to be patient and understanding about the whole thing. If it bothers you too much, you can communicate the same to your partner in a way that they get why you’re upset, instead of making it seem like you’re blaming them. Living together and building a new life is not as easy as shown in movies or TV shows. Learn to have patience – oodles of it!
2. Us vs Them
From here on out, you and your partner are a team, a single unit. It’s you vs them, whoever it might be. You stand together and fight battles together. Having a partner means you have one person who has your back, always, whatever the situation may be. They will do everything in their power to keep you safe and happy, just as you would do the same for them.
It also means that you and your partner are responsible for each other – in every way. While you lean on and depend on them, be ready for them to do the same as well. You are each other’s source of strength.
3. Money is an issue
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Till now, you handled your own finances, knew when to save, how much to save, and what to spend on. You paid your own bills, bought groceries, scrimped on certain things so that you could afford those gorgeous pair of knee-high boots or that shiny gadget. Now, it’s not that easy. When you get hitched is when you realize that you both have responsibilities towards each other as well towards the marriage.
You both need to plan for the future, and save some for a rainy day, while spending on day-to-day essentials as well. So you both need to address how you’re going to budget the money that you both have, with an eye on the future.
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4. Having kids… or not
Once you’re married, it’s a matter of a few months before you’re bombarded with the question – when are you going to have kids? Everyone and their uncle think that they have a say in the matter, except you two. Whether or not you want kids, when to have them, how many to have – are all questions you have addressed before tying the knot.
You might want to enjoy the first couple of years enjoying each other’s company and traveling and partying as a married couple. Or, you could have planned to start trying as soon as you complete your one year anniversary. Or, you could be one of those couples who never intend to have kids, and are really okay with it. Frankly, this decision is up to you both to figure out, based on where you are in your lives, your finances, and your personal choices.
However, you shouldn’t do it just because you’re under pressure from your family or friends or the society. Because that’s just wrong – on so many levels. Have kids because you want to bring another human being into this world and want to care for them and love them with all your heart. Not because of some obligation.
5. Your last name
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Many women choose to forego their father’s last names in favor of their husband’s. This could be because they feel that this is what is expected of them by the society, or their husband, or they just want to feel more connected as a family with their husband. And some women choose to stick with their father’s last name, because that’s what they have had since birth, and just because they got married, they don’t see a point to change their name. So do it only if you want to, not because you are expected to.
However, if you choose to go with the former and adopt your husband’s last name, you might have to change a lot of legal documents and papers like bank accounts, passport, licenses and such. Plus, this process of changing your name on all these important documents is a time- and effort-consuming process. You need to be ready for this.
6. Decisions are taken collectively
From here on out, almost all important decisions in the marriage, is taken collectively. Because such decisions have an impact on both of you. This is one of the hardest things to get used to, especially if you’ve always been incredibly independent and/or strong-willed.
It could be something trivial or something big – the brand of detergent you buy, to the data plan you should opt for, to whether or not to hire a maid service, to whether or not to buy a washing machine, to who is going to do the cooking, to who is going to clean the house. There are just so many decisions that you both need to take as a married couple. The sooner you get all these cleared up, the better it will be for your relationship.
7. Seemingly never-ending to-do list
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Being two responsible adults, there are a million and a half things that need your attention. There seems to be a to-do list that you never seem to get done with. But the key is to not get overwhelmed and going about it in a calm and strategic manner. Divide and conquer is the name of the game. Divide the list of chores/errands that need to be done, and tick off your list in a strategic manner. You both working as a team is what matters, and how much you accomplish in the end depends on that.
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8. Rest and relax from time and time
It’s natural to be excited to do things together as a married couple. However, planning a vacation, or which recreational activities to pursue, or how much to spend on what activity, all need to be discussed and dealt with. For the most part, you need to try and engage in activities that you both might enjoy. Marriage is a compromise, and you need to discuss and plan how you’re going to be spending your down time.
These are the pieces of advice for newlyweds that will come in handy while navigating those crucial first few weeks and months. Beware, it’s not a walk in the park, nor is it too hard to keep an open mind about things. After all, the whole period hinges on how well you can adjust to a new environment and situation, without throwing in the towel. However, as time passes by and you both get used to each other and your ways, marriage becomes easier and easier, for sure. Keep a cool, calm, and open mind, and you should be just fine.
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