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Personal Interests & Expectations

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Interests & Expectations   ::   Time   ::   Recreation  ::   Household   ::   In-laws   ::   Religion & Spirituality

Different Recreational Activities

"You can't make a marriage work if all you care about is what makes you happy."
- Michele Weiner Davis

For most newlywed couples the thought of having an extramarital affair is one of the furthest things from their mind. However, a partner who feels like s/he is being squeezed out by his/her partner's involvement in some extracurricular activity may experience some of the same emotions as a spouse whose partner is having an affair. Admittedly, a sexual affair can be much more hurtful and damaging to a marriage than the "affairs" that we are discussing here, but neglecting one's partner in the pursuit of personal or recreational interests can be very hurtful as well. The unfortunate thing is that the partner who is engaged in the activity may be clueless because they are having so much fun they do not realize the suffering their partner is experiencing. And all too often the partner who is suffering remains silent until they decide to respond with divorce papers, or even worse, an affair of their own.

Discussion: Diversions Come in Many Forms

In the previous examples, softball and old friends were portrayed as the priorities for one partner, while the other partner felt ignored and neglected. However, diversions such as differing recreational and extracurricular interests can come in many forms. The list can be endless, but here are a few common one's that couples let creep into their lives and disrupt their marriages.

  • Sports (participating in them or watching them)
  • Computers (the internet, games, chat rooms, or the most destructive of all - pornography)
  • Television
  • Hobbies
  • Shopping
  • Exercising
  • A family member
  • A friend
  • Craft projects
  • Reading
  • Community and church service
  • Anything or anyone that takes over one's life to the exclusion of his or her partner.

After reading this list you may be thinking, "These are not all necessarily bad things. In fact, most of them are part of a healthy and well rounded life." This is true, but when your partner begins to feel like you value any one of these activities more than them, your marriage is in trouble. That's when you must re-evaluate your priorities so that you and your partner can achieve a mutually satisfying relationship.

Examples

Exercises

Copyright 2008, by the Contributing Authors. Cite/attribute Resource . admin. (2005, December 06). Personal Interests & Expectations. Retrieved January 08, 2011, from Free Online Course Materials — USU OpenCourseWare Web site: http://ocw.usu.edu/Family__Consumer____Human_Development/Marriage___Family_Relationships/Personal_Interests___Expectations_5.html. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License Creative Commons License