When something bad happens in life, it’s natural to want to blame someone else. But, sometimes the situation requires that we take a deeper look at ourselves.
Although there are plenty of ways others can wrong you, sometimes you need to take a deeper look at the situation. Could your expectations be setting you up to get hurt?
One common problem that sabotages people’s relationships is high expectations. William Shakespeare once said, “Expectations is the root of all heartache.” He was right. Unrealistic expectations only lead to frustration and disappointment.
In this post we will look at ways high expectations can create problems and what you can do to nurture a healthier relationship.
- Having High Expectations of a Husband or Wife Can Reinforce Unproductive Gender Roles
Research has shown time and time again that gender roles can be quite harmful to people’s identity and self-worth. Most people don’t consciously enforce stereotypical gender roles in their relationships. However, your actions may say otherwise.
Do you expect husbands to bring home the money? Should wives cook, clean, and raise the children? If you try to mold yourselves into outdated roles, you’re both limiting yourselves from enjoying other parts of your life and reaching your full potential.
- Expectations Can Hurt Self-Esteem
Lots of people agree that there’s nothing worse than a loved one telling you that they’re not mad at you, but they’re disappointed. Your partner is trying to express their love and care for you in their own way but if you are expecting something else you may feel disappointed. If your expectations are too high, you’re setting your partner up to fail and feel ashamed. Relationships that thrive need both partners to nurture each other without negatively affecting each other’s self-esteem.
- Expectations in Marriage Can Create Unhealthy Habits
If you’re on the receiving end of your partner’s high expectations, constantly missing the mark can lead to resentment. Positive changes could have occurred but you may miss them if you are expecting differently. Partners who have high expectations are more likely to sabotage happiness in the relationship. Learning how to recognize your own shortcomings is challenging, which is why going to couples counseling can help the two of you find common ground in your relationship.
- Expectations in Relationships Can Damage Communication Skills
The root of the word ‘expectations’ is ‘expect’, and that is something you should try your best to avoid in a mature relationship. People aren’t mind readers, as much as we would like them to be. Instead of expecting your partner to respond or act in a certain way, communicate your desires directly to them so they can help meet them.
This is why learning how to communicate your needs and asking for something concrete will make both you and your partner more fulfilled. The last thing you’d want to do is make your partner feel like they’re walking on eggshells around you because they don’t know how to please you.
Are Relationship Expectations Sabotaging Your Marriage?
Lowering or eliminating your relationship expectations altogether may feel unnatural at first. However, adopting a flexible and understanding mindset can help bring you closer to your partner and improve your relationship.
Do you need help working through issues with your partner? If so, going to couples counseling can be a healing and enlightening experience.
Our counselors at The Relationship Suite provide a safe space to help you and your partner develop a stronger more intimate relationship. Contact us to learn more about our services and to schedule your appointment.
The Relationship Suite
We are a group of skilled therapists specializing in couples/marriage counseling. Since Covid started we have been working with couples providing Online Couples Counseling in New York, New York City including Manhattan, Queens, Brooklyn, Bronx, Staten Island, Long Island, South Hampton, East Hampton, Montauk. Schedule a complimentary consultation by clicking HERE.
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