8 things no one ever tells you about being married

On being married: Couples share their views on what no one ever tells you about married life.

Marriage as a contract that needs renewing
My husband Bill and I lived together for years before we got married, and it never occurred to us that things might "change" when we were married. Why, we had stayed together when I left to work overseas – what could possibly be more complicated than that!

But to my surprise, things did change. Subtleties and nuances begin on day one of your marriage that no one ever tells you about – like suddenly I became a wife, and strange expectations started flooding my mind. Do I fold the fitted sheets properly now? Start darning our socks? (I still do neither of these things.)

I asked other Canadians about their own discoveries after they tied the knot. Here are 8 secrets about being married that no one ever tells you:

1. He'll still leave the socks on the floor on your 50th wedding anniversary
"If he leaves his socks on the floor on your honeymoon, chances are he is going to leave his socks on the floor on your 50th wedding anniversary. Some things just aren't worth fighting about – choose your battles carefully. And be respectful when making reference to your husband in the presence of your in-laws. He is a very special person to them as they have seen him from birth through to a married man."
– Shannon, 36, married 10 years

2. Being married and spending time together is easier said than done when you have kids
"I'm a new mom and time is at a premium these days as my son is walking, running and climbing – I need to be with him most of the time. My only advice is to spend quality time together doing something you both enjoy. Unfortunately that is way easier said than done as it isn't happening in our house at the moment. We'll keep working on it!"
– Andrea, 34, married 7 years

3. Being married is like a contract you have to keep renewing
"The one piece of advice I give my girls who have now started dating is 'It doesn't matter what I think of your new beau, my only criteria is that he always treat you with respect.' Whether you have been married for 6 months or 60 years, always put 100 per cent into your relationship and respect each other. If you looked at marriage as if both partners had the opportunity to renew the contract every 5 years, would your spouse want to renew?"
– Judy, 41, married 18 years

Page 1 of 2 – More couples dish on the secrets of being married, including the fine art of compromise and why you should consider getting two TVs, on page 2.

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