In marriage and relationships, in general, we have expectations of one another. We expect certain behaviors and actions of our husbands or partners and when they do not deliver, we become disappointed. Among co-workers, we expect the same and when the outcome is derailed, we become frustrated. So what to do? Grab a glass of Merlot, swirl, sniff, sip and come back to some senses.
Fortunately, in friendships we somehow understand each other. There’s a sisterhood that we are connected to, a bond that is unbreakable and therefore, unconditional love exudes. Often times, we can have a conversation and we know what the other will say. At times, we don’t want to hear the criticism, but we accept it because we know they have our best interest in mind.
So why is marriage or intimate relationships so different?
Eve, expectations are great opportunities to set your relationships and yourself up for failure or great success. This depends on whether it is: 1) a reasonable expectation based on the situation and relationship; 2) clearly communicated and concerns are voiced, heard and addressed; and finally 3) mutually understood and agreed upon by all involved. Sounds like a lot of work, doesn’t it?
In Pearls of Grace, I’ve described each step to set expectations.
Wow, Grace, that’s a lot to take in, but definitely useful information. I wonder how I will be in my next relationship. I will certainly set expectations to pave a successful companionship.
Well, Eve, the more intimate the relationship the more important it is to work on expectations. Your friends, no matter how close you are, will not have the same level of intimacy, commitment, passion and complexity that a life partner will have in your life. These are all different roles and as I mentioned in number three, stepping into someone’s shoes can actually help you walk together on the same path. This may prevent you and your partner from going your separate ways.
I think it’s time to role play and eat cake!!! Are you ready? Take 2.
I think you’re right, but not about baking a cake. It’s time for swirl, sniff, snip.