Are Unrealistic Expectations Ruining Your Marriage?

I have conversations all the time with an imaginary man. In fact, I’ll bet you do too.

You see, we develop these unrealistic expectations of how our marriage should be (and especially how our husbands “should” treat us).

And on days when real married life is less than ideal, we imagine how our fantasy spouse–let’s call him “Prince Charming”–would act in that moment.

Prince Charming gives the “perfect” answer our your feelings, right?

He says things like: “Oh, honey, you’re so right. Let me draw you a bath and give you a neck message as you tell me all about it.”

Prince Charming knows exactly what we need, and is more than happy to give it to us gift-wrapped with a lovely red bow.

He is completely selfless and at our beck and call. And if we let him invade our mind regularly, this fantasy guy can also be a silent marriage killer.

I have conversations all the time with an imaginary man. In fact, I'll bet you do too.  You see, we develop these unrealistic expectations of how our marriage should be (and especially how our husbands "should" treat us).  And on days when real married life is less than ideal, we imagine how our fantasy spouse--let's call him "Prince Charming"--would act in that moment.  Prince Charming gives the "perfect" answer our your feelings, right?  He says things like: “Oh, honey, you’re so right. Let me draw you a bath and give you a neck message as you tell me all about it.”  Prince Charming knows exactly what we need, and is more than happy to give it to us gift-wrapped with a lovely red bow.  He is completely selfless and at our beck and call. And if we let him invade our mind regularly, this fantasy guy can also be a silent marriage killer. How can we deal with unrealistic expectations in marriage?

 

Prince Charming Feeds Unhealthy Relationship Expectations

I’ve learned through almost 15 years of marriage that this fantasy guy that lives in my head is anything but the best man for me.

You see, for years, Prince Charming has tricked me and given me the wrong impression about how my real husband (you know the one I said “for better or worse” to) “should” treat me.

Prince Charming has whispered impossibilities into my ear—falsehoods about what marriage “should” be about and about how my husband “should” respond in each situation.

He has established unrealistic expectations in my heart about how my husband “needs” to react. He has told me that, if my husband really loved me, he would answer me in this specific way or do this specific thing.

For years, these unrealistic expectations robbed me of the true joys of my husband and severely limited our marriage. 

And yet, I was the one who let these falsehoods take root in my heart! I was the one who said, “Prince Charming, you’re right and he’s wrong. Why can’t he respond the way you do?”

Take Action Against Unrealistic Expectations in Marriage

Proverbs 14:1 says, “A wise woman builds her home, but a foolish woman tears it down with her own hands.” Oh, how true this is.unrealistic expectations marriage

And friend, today I want to be real with you about the dangers of listening to Prince Charming, and how this idealized man can slowly and inadvertently destroy the beautiful walls of your home’s foundation—your marriage.

I recently shared about this topic as part of the 31 Days to A Better Marriage Series.

This post is a very personal one for me (and I feel that it has the potential to set many women free!) so I pray that you’re able to read the full post here.

Other Posts on Marriage:

When Chronic Illness Invades Your Marriage

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The Surprising Secret to Better Sex for Christians

chronic illness marriage

Real Marriage: Why My Spouse Is Not the Enemy

 unrealistic expectations marriage

 

Your Turn:

Have you ever dealt with unrealistic expectations in your relationship by creating a fantasy spouse in your mind? What lies does your Prince Charming tell you, and how have you seen it lead to an unhealthy marriage?

About Alicia Michelle

As a wife and mom to four passionate kids, Alicia Michelle loves encouraging other moms with practical tips for joy-filled living in everyday life, especially in parenting, marriage, faith and health.Alicia is the owner/editor of Your Vibrant Family; the author of Plan to Be Flexible, The Back to School Survival Manual; and the creator/producer of the "7 Days to a Less Angry Mom Online Video Course,", Christ-Centered Christmas Resources and My Memory Box Organizing System. In addition, she is a monthly contributor for several popular family blogs, including Crosswalk.com.Follow her on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

Leave a Reply 8 comments

Jenn - October 28, 2015 Reply

Ooh I feel this post for sure! It happens especially when I watch too many romantic comedies. If I watch them a lot, you can be sure I end up thinking – “why doesn’t my hubby surprise me like that?” or “Why isn’t he as romantic anymore?” It is so true that holding on to unrealistic expectations can seriously damage your marriage. It’s helpful for me to step back and re-evaluate all the amazing things my hubby does every day – like help with the dishes after a long day of work 🙂

    Alicia Michelle - October 28, 2015 Reply

    Jenn, yes! Those darn romantic comedies!! They tend to stir those emotions in me as well! What a great point. And YES… it’s critical that we re-frame and ask ourselves, “What IS he doing to show me love?” It sounds like you’re blessed with an amazing hubby too!

Sandy Sandmeyer - November 1, 2015 Reply

Thank you so much for sharing your post with us at the #AnythingGoes Link Party! The new party goes live today at 6 PM ET. You’re my pick for this week’s feature post!!!

    Alicia Michelle - November 3, 2015 Reply

    Sandy, thank you so much for picking my post! I appreciate that and glad you will be sharing it with others! 🙂

Blasé2Blaze - January 29, 2016 Reply

+1!

Queen - January 30, 2016 Reply

Omg I love this!! so good and true, Thank you!

Dating my husband #13 plus 10 ways to say I love you – Diyfamilygarden - November 16, 2016 Reply

[…]  Stop expecting him/her to meet all your needs. […]

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