Our culture sure offers some mixed messages about love and marriage. Young “twenty-somethings” are stepping into life long commitment when they barely know who they are. There is pressure by families, a true biological clock, rom-coms, Hallmark movies, and a myriad of “shoulds.” I fell into the “should “category back in my 20s. I had this “should” that I needed to be married by the time I was 30. I don’t even know how it got into my consciousness but it did. I was guided to go to college first, step into a career first, and then the husband could come. I did just that, but the ‘should’ be married by 30 had me not listen to my intuition, go against my own desires for the kind of marriage I wanted, and completely disrespect and sacrifice myself. At the age of 25 I met a guy who lived in my building at the time. He lived upstairs, I lived downstairs sort of thing. We talked and started to hang out. He looked a bit like Tom Cruise so I was intrigued. He was funny, really intellectual, but was missing a few things that were high on my list. There was some kind of disconnect within him emotionally and I just let it slide. It didn’t occur to me that he was 23 and just not ready for what I though I was ready for and it didn’t occur to me that I still needed to do more of my own personal growth work.
After about 2 months, my intuition LOUDLY said “no, this is not your guy…” “Shush” I said back to it, and pretended that this was a good situation for me. After 3 months his ex girlfriend was sniffing around and after 4 months he was lying to me about several things. I ended it. I even moved.
My self-esteem was really low at the time and I didn’t know if anyone else would like me. I look back now wondering what the hell I was thinking, but hindsight and all that.
To make this story shorter, he came after me to get back together ( not sure why), he moved into my place, and I thought his lying, cheating self would change and he was ready. Nope. My intuition was really yelling at me to kick him out but somewhere in my programming, I saw 30 looming and didn’t want to still be single. Skipping the Lifetime Movie version, I convinced him to marry me and it was a hot 8 year mess. So, ya, I was married at 30, but I was miserable.
The real truth is that by allowing his bad behavior, by allowing him to break our agreements, by giving him a pass on things that were deal breakers for me, I completely dishonored myself, my standards, my values. Clearly he wasn’t ready for marriage or love, but it occurred to me post-divorce that I hadn’t been ready either. Having gotten remarried in 2001, I knew I was ready. Those pieces were in place and I attracted the right man! The only thing I sacrifice now is the bed covers- my husband hogs them, but even then, we work that out. 😉
If you feel you have to sacrifice yourself, your values, your deal -makers and deal breakers, you are not ready either. When you choose to honor who you are and what you want, when you value yourself enough to stand your ground, and set yourself up to be in alignment with those critical pieces, that is when you know you are ready!