When we aren't happy, it is easy—and quite common—for our generation to blame our spouse for it. The real question is about whether or not you can be happy with the person you are already with. She didn't rely on him for help raising the kids or with the housework times have changed! I hate his father. How can we let go of unrealistic expectations? We cannot feel truly committed to someone if we also feel that there might be someone else out there for us.
Like individuals, couples are increasingly isolated from the outside sources of support that previous generations had, and so our partners have become our primary sources of emotional and for some, spiritual fulfillment. The abundance of choice in our society-and the advertising and media culture that quite effectively makes us feel that we won't be complete until we acquire that next great thing-is taking its toll on our relationships. More than that, we are entitled to more, and better. Our expectations hugely influence our perceptions, and therefore our decisions, our experiences, our judgments, and ultimately, how we feel. But we're unlikely to feel grateful for what we have when we feel entitled to something better, something more. She didn't rely on him for help raising the kids or with the housework times have changed! The reverse is also true. I have a theory about this. Today, we expect our spouses to be our partners in just about every realm. Krasnow's reader, Cindy from Dallas, emails her that "[this] hate I feel, it simmers and I wonder if it's a sign that there could be a better partner out there for me. How much can we really expect of our spouses and still be happy? He is a warm, hands-on father who makes a good living. We expect that we should have unlimited choice when it comes to shoes, housing, cars, types of jam at the grocery store And yet, like most of my peers, I would not sign up for her life—or, in particular, her marriage. Seems that many people are not feeling as much love and romance as Hallmark would hope. I hate my husband! If I asked my grandmother if her late husband was her best friend, her provider, her lover, and her partner in parenting and life—her go-to guy for emotional fulfillment, practical help, AND the center of her social universe—she would have laughed uproariously. Cindy from Dallas clarifies: The real question is about whether or not you can be happy with the person you are already with. When we aren't happy, it is easy—and quite common—for our generation to blame our spouse for it. Little things grate on me every day. We can always have it better than our parents' generation, if only we work hard enough. This is both ironic and instructive for our generation. We cannot feel truly committed to someone if we also feel that there might be someone else out there for us. When I asked her if she had had a happy life she's now years old , she giggled at the absurdity of the question. He is not a compulsive gambler, nor is he physically or verbally abusive.
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