Do you really think you’re normal?

Ok, I know you think you’re normal… but does your spouse!?

201410 IAmNormal

When taking on a new employee there are basic contractual elements that should be clearly defined;

  • the employee’s duties and responsibilities
  • the employer’s duties and responsibilities

When we get married, the contract (or covenant) we make has nothing about the practicalities of living out what we’re promising. Yes, there is a very strong framework within which we agree to work, but it is just that; a framework.

To have and to hold from this day forward,
for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer,
in sickness and in health,
to love and to cherish, till death us do part,
according to God’s holy law, and this is my solemn vow.

We tend not to give much thought to the details, the nuts and bolts, of living together. We assume our normal is, well… normal. Problems come when your normal is different to your spouse’s. It’s not until we’ve lived in the confines of the same space that we really start to see our differences.

Rooted in our experiences, we have an understanding of how a “normal” marriage operates. The silly little things, if unresolved, can become irritants. They can get blown out of all proportion.

Doesn’t he know the rubbish goes out on a Tuesday…!?

We’d never set up a marriage contract stipulating one will wash the bathroom on a Saturday afternoon and the other will mow the lawn on a Sunday morning. And yet, somehow we can get annoyed that they’re not fulfilling their part of the deal… the part they didn’t know about.

We operate from different “normals”. They’re not wrong, they’re just different. We need to define new normals for our own marriages. Just because something worked for your parents doesn’t mean it will work in your marriage.

Let’s have a laugh – what “normals” did you and your spouse have to resolve?!


  1. Great post. We’ve had an issue with the toothpaste too. We do easily get annoyed with each other about small things, and of course it’s also worse if we don’t tell each other that we’re annoyed because how can the other part know? I agree with you, nothing is normal…the solution is somehow to communicate, to respect the other’s point of view and meet each other on the middle. I don’t know why that is hard sometimes.

  2. I know it’s a bit of a cliche, but the toothpaste… need I say more?

    I’d just make sure that every time I brush my teeth I’d squeeze all the paste down to the end of the tube. It’s no big deal really. Although, to let you in on a little secret, I don’t always squeeze it down these days, so that probably counts as being complicit with a middle-of-the-tube-squeezer! 😉

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