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7 Things We Learned Our First 7 Days Of Being Married

Before tying the knot, I would ask married friends for one piece of advice they could give me for a success in my own relationship. I got all sorts of wisdom but no one really gave me any words of advice for the first few days of truly being together.

My wife Melanie and I dated for a year and then walked down the aisle after being engaged for five months. After the whirlwind of wedding planning and then the actual ceremony and reception, we were thrust into this unfamiliar territory of oneness. Going into it we naively thought we knew what to expect, but we have definitely learned a few things in the first seven days of being married.


1. Marriage will not fulfill you.

Melanie: When you were a little girl, did you dream of the perfect husband, family, and house? I know I did. Marriage was going to make everything better. All my problems would go away. My husband would tell me I was pretty every day which would make all my insecurities disappear. I was just waiting for the moment I was married so that I would feel secure and fulfilled.

I learned very quickly that this was not the case. I’ve been the most vulnerable I’ve ever felt in these first seven days of marriage, and marriage has only put a spotlight on my insecurities and hurts. So hear me on this, marriage will not fulfill you. The only thing that truly fulfills you is your relationship with Christ, not with your husband.

2. Sex is awesome, but not absolute.

Phillip: As a single man, waiting to have sex with your soon-to-be wife can almost be unbearable at times. Our culture has fed us the lie that sex is the end-all-be-all of life.

In the first week of marriage, I learned that sex is absolutely amazing but it is not absolute. Connecting with your wife sexually brings you closer than you’ve ever been and brings a new bond that wasn’t there before. It was easy to believe as a single man that marriage is all about sex but the vast majority of your time will be spent just hanging out with your best friend.

3. You’re not on your own schedule.

Melanie: Being single, I was totally used to doing things on my own time. I’m a free-spirited extrovert that likes doing what I feel at the time. Scheduling is definitely not my thing…but Phillip’s middle name is ‘schedule.’ This obviously is a recipe for conflict.

Being married for seven days has already taught me how selfish I really am, and it’s made me have to consider that I’m not the only one in this relationship. We’re not on my time, but our time.

4. Expect unmet expectations.

Phillip: I was expecting to have sex one night, and she was expecting to go straight to sleep. I was expecting to go to a restaurant, and she was expecting to order room service. I was expecting that we would go snorkeling, and she was expecting that we would lay on the beach.

We constantly had expectations that were unmet because they were not communicated. With one of us being an introvert (me) and one of us being an extrovert (Melanie) we are still learning to over communicate. Just when you think you’re communicating too much, communicate more.


5. Conflict should bring you closer.

Phillip: Day two on the honeymoon brought the first conflict of our marriage. I was being a huge grump. My expectations of me and my wife snorkeling through the reefs of Jamaica were sharply interrupted by her wanting to get a tan (I don’t know anything about that life considering my beautiful natural tan).

There we were, in the middle of paradise, waist-deep in clear water on a sunny day trying to work out conflict. It wasn’t what either of us wanted to do but after it was done, we felt closer than ever. We’re both learning that healthy conflict is a key ingredient in closer oneness.

6. Sharing a bed isn’t easy.


Expectation – Spooning and snuggling all night. Kissing me on the forehead before we go to sleep and telling me how beautiful I look with no makeup on.

Reality – Snoring. Farting. Taking the covers. Pushing me off the bed. Getting way too hot from all of the body heat.

In all seriousness, though, it really has been an adjustment sleeping with someone. But it really has been so great. You get to see each other in a different light (sometimes not the most glamorous light, but for better or for worse, right?) Waking up to his morning breath every morning is strangely awesome. However, he learned the hard way not to turn the light on to wake me up…(see #5).

7. When your partner hurts, you’ll hurt.

Phillip: When I am a grump, she feels the wrath. When she feels insecure about her body image, I feel the isolation due to the lack of connectedness. We’re one now and we’re learning that when one of us is down, both of us are down.


The first week of marriage has been a great adventure that we both felt prepared for but still didn’t know completely what to expect. We made a lot of mistakes and will continue to make mistakes. But we’re both thankful that God is using marriage to make us better. We wouldn’t trade it for the world!

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