Like most millennials, the idea of getting married, ‘settling down’, gave me jitters worthy of being measured on a Richter scale. Despite having been in a long-term, ‘serious’ relationship, I couldn’t wrap my head around the idea of saying ‘I do’ and then spending the rest of my life honoring those two words.The relationship crumbled under weight of mismatched expectations. Months later, my best friend proposed marriage. He didn’t want to go out, test the waters and ‘see where it goes’. He was clear he wanted to share his life with me. To my surprise, I said yes, almost instantly, without the slightest bit of hesitation.
It just felt right. As if, meant to be. For the longest time I couldn’t pin down the reason for this inexplicable change of heart even though it warranted a paradigm shift in my lifestyle and embracing the challenges of being a military spouse. What was it about this guy that made me take such an enormous leap of faith without a hint of hesitation and not regret it?
Eight years of togetherness and six years of marriage later, I have been able to put things in perspective. Here’s my two cents on why marrying your best friend can be the best decision you’ll ever take:
- Old and Comfortable: The best thing about having your best friend as your life partner is that sense of familiarity you feel with them. Like an old shoe, if one were to draw an analogy. It fits snuggly, does not hurt and while it may not be new and shiny, you know you can bank on it. It is the same with your relationship. You have known each other for donkey’s years now, and that need to put your best foot forward is just so obsolete. You could literally have your first date in your sleeping shorts and a tee, and not care about how you look.
- You Love Hanging Out Together: One of the biggest issues in any relationship is one of the partners wanting time off to spend with their gang of friends or BFFs. Well, hallelujah, you are already BFFs, so hanging out together has been your favorite indulgence. Guess what? You get to do that every day, for the rest of your life.
- You Know What You Are Signing Up For: There won’t be an unexpected blast from the past, behavioral issues or ideological differences that you’d stumble upon as you go along the journey of life. Yes, there may be a few quirks and habits that you may be unaware of – say leaving their wet towel on the bed or not arranging the wardrobe neatly – but you can always work your way around these.
- You Can Speak Your Mind: We are all familiar with those days of strange awkwardness in the beginning of any relationship when you really feel the need to weigh your words and second guess your opinion before vocalizing your thoughts. When your significant other is your best friend, there are fewer inhibitions. You can slap their back and tell them to get their act together if you have to, without mincing your words.
- You Like Doing Things Together: There has to be that one thing your bonded over when friendship struck, and over the years, you’d have developed your own list of things you like to do together – solving the crossword, watching movies, getting beer, going to concerts and festivals and so on. This means not having to give up any of your hobbies post marriage or wondering, ‘what should we do this weekend?’
- Their Family Already Knows and Loves You: You have both frequented each others’ house regularly. Your best friend’s family not only knows you but also adores you, and that is more than half the battle one, especially in the India family system.
- You Will Like Each Other A Lot After The Initial High Wears Off: Every relationship comes with a honeymoon period when you can’t get enough of each other. Once this initial high wears off, reality hits like bolt and that can shake up things for even the most madly-in-love couples. You are sorted on the front too because you have a genuine fondness for each other that will last a lifetime.
- You Know Each Other’s Relationship Quirks: Chances are you have acted like your best friends love guru in the past. You know what they like, what hurts them, what gets them excited and so on. This is a gold mine of insider information to base a new relationship on.
- No Skeletons In The Closet: We all have some dark, dirty secrets conveniently locked away in a corner of our memory. It may be long before one finds the confidence and strength to share them with one’s spouse, and the incessant picking feeling of not being completely honest with your partner until that happens. But not when the spouse has been your best friend for years. They already know your life inside out, so no fear of those unsightly skeletons tumbling out of your closet at the wrong time.
- 24×7 Support System: From bad grades in school to troubles with your boss, a fight with parents and everything else in between, your best friend has been your go-to person for heart-to-hearts in a distressing situation. With marriage, that support system moves right into your house. Win-win.
The idea of being in a romantic relationship with a person who has essentially become an extension of you over the years takes some getting used to. Once you have wrapped your head around it, brace yourself to embark on a beautiful journey. This is not to say you won’t have your share of fights, issues or problems associated with marriage but that you’d always work your way around them because you’ve both got each other’s backs and that comes naturally to you.
A journalist by profession, freelancer by choice. She is most content in company of words. Between writing, reading, hitting the road and exploring food, she also juggles roles as an army wife and mommy.