Before your marriage your loved one is your best friend and is completely devoted to you. Your happiness comes first even above his or her own needs. This is the Honeymoon phase of the relationship.
After the marriage, in those first few months, you may notice a subtle shift. Your partner is now feeling free to declare their own needs. They were able to ignore them during the courtship, but now these needs surface. Sometimes, this causes small conflicts and can cause feelings of disillusionment. You may feel betrayed. You might feel like you lost your best friend. You may think that you made a terrible mistake and question your choice and wonder what happened to the person you married. It can come as quite a shock when you realize for the first time that your partner will stand up for their own interests even if they conflict with yours. Sometimes, they have needs that they didn’t even know that they had until the situation arises.
It would not be unusual for you to jump to the conclusion that they love you less and no longer care about you and your happiness. However, this is not true. Your partner does not love you less. They love you just as much. They are not against you. They are just for themselves as well.
It is important that you recognize that this is a normal response and a period of adjustment. Keep things in perspective. Your partner cannot ignore their own needs forever. In addition, they may be disillusioned by your responses as well.
Your behavior and reactions during this time are crucial because it is possible that you can damage or ruin what you have and make yourself and your partner very unhappy. Do not allow negative feelings and thoughts to harm your otherwise perfect union. Never allow your partner to become a monster in your own mind. Do not label their words or actions as selfish. These are just issues that you and your partner will work out and find a compromise.
Patricia Frank is a Licensed Psychotherapist. She can be reached at 305-788-4864, Psychotherapy.firstname.lastname@example.org.