Having a family of your own, a group of people that you love and they love you back is everyone’s biggest desire in life. We all would love to come home to vibrant children and spouse everyday, people that accept you as you are and will do anything to make sure you are happy always. However, this is most often not the reality on the ground. Sometimes your family will make you cry. They will push you to the edge with their own needs and expectations. Yes, sometimes your family will disappoint.
Your expectation of a smooth sailing experience with family does not always match the reality of the day to day running of the family. One of the reasons why there is a huge gap between our expectations and the reality of family life today is relying heavily on outside influences and the media. The glorious images we see daily on the media, be it mainstream or on social media have led many people to create expectations that cannot, or would be hard to fulfill as they go about their family lives. Friends and relatives might also impose exaggerated ideas on family life that are not achievable in reality. The following are some day to day activities of a family where one’s expectations might fail to match with reality:
Marriage- Expectation vs Reality:
Expectations are high when one is getting into marriage. You expect a life of bliss with your spouse, where you agree on every issue, big or small. You might also expect to be accepted and treated well by the other members of your spouse’s family. The reality is that, yes some will love you and have you as their own, some might not like you as much as you would like them to. Some may even not have time to get to know you further than you being their sibling’s choice of spouse. Your spouse might also have a different way of doing certain things than you are used to, and you might have to contend with their way.
Pregnancy- Expectation vs Reality:
Pregnancy brings with it untold joy. Having a little human being growing inside of you, and waiting to meet them and know them is the most exciting thing in the world. You might feel like you want the world to share with your joy and your journey as well Most people expect to have a stress free, comfortable nine months of pregnancy, only to face the reality of morning sickness, hormonal and physical changes that they had never imagined.
Parenting- Expectation vs Reality:
You might expect a child to agree to your choices or advice you give them. You expect them to accept and take up your advice since all you want as a parent is the best for them. The reality however, is that as your child grows, they get to make their own choices, and are able to communicate them, sometimes in ways that even you might not understand. What you had pictured in your mind to be a restful afternoon out in the park might turn into a race with you running after your child just to calm them down.
Family Vacations- Expectation vs Reality:
You might head out to your annual family vacations expecting everyone in your family to be vibrant and ready to take on the world with all the fun activities you have planned out for them. You get to the destination and some of the family members are either too tired try out any activity, or maybe they find them too boring and would rather just sleep in.
It is imperative that one matches, or tries to match their expectation vs reality to be able to lead a life that is balanced, and that is accommodating for all family members. There are many disappointments that can come with your expectations not meeting with reality, and which could lead to you or another member of your family feeling left or judged by other members. Raising a great and successful family takes work and has its challenges, and the best way to progress is to accept your family as they are at any given time, and to embrace and love them so, just as they love you in return.