Set up to take a fall: The Problem with Unrealistic Expectations (Part III)

Passionate romance always fades or at least changes to something less intense over time. All couples will face challenges and problems at some point in their relationship but understanding that the journey will not always be plain sailing is important to ensure couples pick up the warning signs and guard themselves against unexpected situations.

The problem with unrealistic expectations

While the phenomenon of being love struck is quite normal, it can also be a setup when experienced in extremes. There are several problems associated with unrealistic marriage expectations.

    3. Set up to take a fall: 
    It has been said that the distance between one’s expectations and the reality experienced is equal to the hurt and disappointment one will feel. It is not a matter of “if” but “when” reality will set in for couples. All couples face challenges and problems at some point in their marriage.

    It may be the norm for engaged couples to be love-struck, embracing romanticised notions regarding love and marriage or perhaps it may just be that humans are designed to function at a physiological level. Don’t sound the alarms or be overly critical but understand that couples may need to be more realistic about what they should expect from their relationship.

Marriage Expectations is a challenging, yet fun area of discussion for premarital couples, however whilst these couples often have a lot to discuss as they prepare for marriage, healthy dialogue about expectations is critical.

The key question for exploration for engaged couples is:

“My partner is the only person with whom I could have a happy marriage.”

by Peter Larson, Ph.D.

Tune in next week for part 4.

References: Olson, D. H. (2004). PREPARE/ENRICH Counselor’s Manual. Minneapolis: Life Innovations.

Slater, L. (2006). True Love. National Geographic. February, 32-49.

Source: Peter Larson, Ph.D.

#PREPARE/ENRICH is a customised online assessment tool that identifies each couples unique strength and growth areas. Based on their assessment results, a facilitator provides feedback sessions, helping couples to discuss and understand their results while teaching them proven relationship skills.

For more information on PREPARE/ENRICH or to simply set up a couple on the tool, please contact: or call today (02) 9520 4049 #prepareenrich



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