3 Myths That are Unhelpful in Building Lasting, Satisfying Relationships

When I learned the news, I was heartbroken. There was no way that it was real. What chance did the rest of us have if they weren’t able to make it?

When you learned about Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt’s split, you could have had a similar reaction. I prefer to think of myself as someone who is too busy educating my mind with stimulating intellectual activities and doing good deeds in the world to pay attention to celebrity news. I have to admit, though, that I was quite enthralled and moved by their tale of unrequited love.

They truly had everything. Money, position, attractiveness, social acceptance, and principles they tried to live by…So how could a relationship with so much financial support end? Sure, they had to deal with the demands of Hollywood, but are they really over?

Of all, we are all aware of the pressures that even close relationships that are not subject to Hollywood’s predatory gaze must endure. The difficulties that most partnerships encounter include the strains of job, financial concerns, kids, additional caregiving responsibilities, self-development expectations, and a culture that values extreme individualism over collaboration.

I’d like to list some of the beliefs about intimate partnership that I think are detrimental to creating enduring, fulfilling relationships below:

Myth #1: An intimate partnership is and should be fun.

You should have the impression that you are constantly listening to the laugh track of a sitcom.

I’m sitting on my partner’s soiled socks in our bed as I write this. Millions of insignificant daily tasks such as texting about what to have for dinner, going grocery shopping, arguing briefly about who put the trash on the carpet so it left a stain, doing the laundry, getting ready for work, and disassembling the kitchen to figure out why you have a moth infestation all contribute to the development of an intimate relationship.

Perhaps learning to cherish the commonplace as the connective tissue holding the relationship’s body together, rather than just the beautiful, is the craft of relationship building. Although it isn’t attractive, it is the stuff of true love. May I propose that you quit putting undue pressure on yourself?

Myth #2: You should “work” on your marriage.

If you’re like me, the mention of “work” makes you want to jump into bed and pull the covers over your head. Toil, labor, exertion, and my personal favorite, drudgery, are among words we may use to describe our work. I’m not sure about you, but I’m not exactly motivated by these associations. I believe you have experienced the effectiveness of that if you have ever mentioned to someone, “I think we need to work on our relationship.” For some people, hearing or saying such words is equivalent to being told they require a root canal.

Myth #3: You can choose not to plan ahead for your relationship.

In our culture, there is a notion that it is possible to attain some sort of work-life balance. And if you have total control over your life’s decisions, I believe this is a useful concept. However, if you belong to the 99% of people, your boss determines your schedule, which is influenced by the schedules of other people in your life, such as your partner, children, and relatives. Refrain from putting yourself under pressure to build an idealized relationship that does not exist.

Instead, consider making some doable, practical strategic decisions for your partnership. How may you, for instance, express love and kindness through your body language? So perhaps after a difficult day at work, give your lover a soothing back rub rather than complaining. Comic On a View episode, Tracy Morgan talks about the affectionate “gaze” he gives to his wife and kid. Even if a romantic weekend getaway is beyond of your price range, you can still choose to love your partner and treat them with respect. If “date night” isn’t an option, perhaps you can watch TV that illustrates some of the principles you’re trying to instill in your relationship. Make pro-relationship decisions that are appropriate for your particular situation.