Marriage Matters Monday – Worry About Yourself

Don't Worry, Be Happy: Me & Mr. TK last summer on Fire Island

I have no desire to be a relationship expert of any kind. The only relationship I want to be an expert on is my own. (Kudos to those true professionals who have studied their butts off to help the rest of us navigate our love lives.) However this is on my heart and mind so I wanted to share. I’ve only been married a few months but one thing I’ve already learned is it requires way too much time and energy to worry what others think of your union. In the words of this quite profound toddler, after you say “I Do”, it is even more important to worry about yourself.

Once you cross over into the land of holy matrimony, folks constantly ask, “How’s married life?” Most people sincerely are curious. Others are just making conversation. Some are itching for you to complain. Regardless of their motives, I strongly think being a newlywed is a time of your life — more than ever — to focus on you and your partner and to tune out the peanut gallery. From (seemingly) trivial decisions like who will handle the laundry to more longterm ones like creating a living will, to balancing a demanding career with home life, marriage keeps your plate full.

In my experience the more time you concern yourself with what others think about your marriage, the less time you spend enjoying your marriage. Thankfully Mr. TK and I got good practice sifting through the unsolicited advice during our engagement. So now rather than worry myself about folks who speculate how I live as a freelancer (Gotta laugh when other people try to count your money.), Mr. TK and I are plotting and building for the future. People will talk. Let them talk.

Long before I even met my husband, my mother instilled in me the importance of being self-assured. My mom lived (and still does) by the mantra: comparison is the thief of joy. She told me that once you start comparing and “keeping score” with your friends it never stops. I distinctly recall her warning me in my teen years, “First you’re comparing clothes, then jobs. Then you’re comparing engagement rings. Next it is washing machines and vacations and children. It doesn’t stop so don’t you start.”

I can only speak for Mr. TK and I but between trying to keep all the things that are important to us healthy and happy — romance, relationships with family + friends, careers — there’s no time to worry about what others think about what we do and how we’re doing it. Some people say that their marriage isn’t work. We know ours is; but the work is fulfilling to us. We know other married couples who are able to do things that financially we cannot right now. We are secure enough to be happy for them. Genuinely.

Worrying about us>worrying about others and worrying about others who worry about us. Who would guess a child in a car seat would have such lasting words of wisdom to share about marriage?

P.S. – Lupita Nyong’o stunned at Saturday night’s Screen Actors Guild Awards in a fierce Gucci gown. (!)

Have you received any valuable relationship advice from a child? If so, what was it?

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    1. You make me smile when I read posts like this one and start reminiscing of conversations we had when you were young. So many things about life you already knew because you were always an exceptionally mature young person, “wise beyond your age”, “an old soul” So I know you’re not reversing now, take that baby’s advice and “worry about yourself” LOL!

    2. Heather W. says:

      Great advice for love and life. Thanks, B.

    3. SpikesDtr says:

      Over ten years ago, my friend’s teen nephew introduced us to a phrase I’ve used on occasion. “Do You.” I love it!

    4. Agreed…however, as a journalist myself, I am always curious about how freelancers make it :) LOL…

    5. @Mommy – LOL! Love you — I will never be able to thank you enough for all that you’ve done and do.

      @Heather – Glad you found the post informative! xo

      @SD – Haha, I like that.

      @Jackie – My mother is full of wise sayings and another jewel she gave me early in life was that financial stability is rarely about how much you make but what you do with what you have. I know people who earn considerably more than I do yet live check to check and have virtually no savings. Now admittedly I’ve been blessed to keep steady freelance work since getting laid off in 2009 but I try (I still have a ways to go but I am trying!) to live beneath my means. I also have been able to benefit from unique circumstances that have allowed me to take chances in ways I might not have been able to otherwise. I am very appreciative of it all. Lastly, I think genuine curiosity is healthy (and yours seems innocent) but I pray that I never spend too much time worrying about how other folks afford their lifestyles, especially if they’re not asking to borrow money from me. Imma worry about me and mine. ;-)

    6. @Jackie – Oh and to “keep it one hundred” as the kids say, another way most freelancers make it is to hustle like crazy! LOL!

    7. Wow! You got all that in a few months! I’m almost 2 years in and just getting to that point myself. It’s all about us now—me and him. We learn something new everyday.

    8. Bridgette Bridgette says:

      @Tyler – HA! I think the biggest reason I figured this out so early in our marriage is because I have a lot of my own ish to work on improving. Marriage (mine, anyway) has a way of exposing things about myself I guess I was in denial about before. It’s like, you can’t hide behind xyz anymore. Ultimately it is a good thing. I’d like to think my husband and I are forcing each other to grow and evolve for the best. And then there’s just the day to day adjusting. I was a bachelorette for a long time and developed habits and a lifestyle that isn’t always conducive to married life.

    9. LOL…just innocent question…thanks for indulging me :)

    10. Bridgette Bridgette says:

      @Jackie – You’re welcome. ;-) And thanks for continuing to support Triple B even after becoming a Mrs. I truly appreciate thoughtful comments.

    11. This is good…good…GOOD to me!!! I can’t read it without it sounding just like that baby lol! My fave video of 2013! I was engaged in Nov after only dating my fiancé since march. SO that was folks concern…not ours. We moved our wedding up to this October from May 2015 FOR US and then folks talk about that. So like you, this engagement has taught me how to not be concerned about what others will inevitably have to say about how we live our lives together. My mentor (Marrie/how to be a God led wife mentor lol) told me…just wait until you have kids everyone will know what’s best for them and how to raise them better than you and your husband. I said hmmm I will start praying now lol

    12. Aunt Zee says:

      This is just as interesting today as it was when written in January! I thoroughly enjoyed it and all the comments too. Obviously this is a slow day and I’m catching up on my BBB posts.

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