3 Major Misconceptions about Relationships

Image courtesy of The Daily Mail UK

Image courtesy of The Daily Mail UK

Today, everyone considers themself a relationship guru. (Darn social media). But even though we may not all be gurus and experts, there are those of us who have been able to gain the experience that can help someone else. With that in mind, here are three popular misconceptions I frequently hear about relationships.

1) Singleness is Synonymous with Cancer.

Whenever you go to a wedding, isn’t it amazing how much the attention goes away from the bride and groom to all the single people in the room? The conversation transitions to why you’re single.

I was in ten weddings before my own, and I always found it fascinating how being single at weddings seemed cancerous to others. And don’t get me started if you’re in your 30s or 40s and still single. You mean to tell me… you’re STILL single? *makes a face* The Bible describes singleness as a gift, not a curse. I’m happily married, but I also celebrate all my friends who are single.

I think there are two types of single people:

  1. Those who are single with purpose.

  2. Those who are single waiting for purpose.

Singleness is not deadly, it’s an opportunity.

When I was single, I traveled all over the place and tried to do everything I possibly could for God and fun. And now, my wife and I do the same. I don’t elevate my married season over my single season. When I was single, I lived with purpose. Now that I’m married, we live with purpose together. But there’s nothing worse than for a guy to find a single woman who’s waiting on her purpose. Do all that you can right now while you’re single. And in the midst of your purpose, I think you’ll find the one who’s looking for you.

2) You Should Have High Standards for Whomever You Date.

When you ask someone what they’re looking for in a mate, it’s hilarious. The resume of the person they want is far greater than their own. Should you have high standards for a mate? Yes. But you should have higher standards for yourself.

You want a man with a good job. Do you have a good job? You want a girl who works out and stays in shape. How often do you work out? Whatever standard you’ve created for this person you’ll someday date, you should create a higher standard for who you are to become.

One of the most attractive things a person can do is to hold themselves to high standards. People who have high standards attract other people with high standards.

People ask me all the time, “Why do I always seem to get hit on by __________?” and they fill in the blank with some group of [wo]men with negative attributes. Well, you have to ask yourself the question, “Am I attracting who I am to myself?” Change your own standards and you’ll change who’s interested in you.

3) Divorce is a Red Flag.  

I do agree that you should be careful when dating someone who is divorced, but I think you should be careful when dating ANYBODY. It’s amazing to me how divorce can be a major red flag in a relationship to some, while they ignore obvious attributes about a person like being controlling, easily-angered, horrible with finances, decisive, and manipulating–all of which lead to divorce!

You can’t pick and choose which red flags you want to pay attention to. Self-awareness and being able to realize your own relational strengths and weaknesses will take you a long way in a relationship. When you are aware of your own, you can then begin to understand a potential mate’s.

Fifty-two percent of our country is in the divorced category. And they all have their own stories. I know some divorced people who got counseling, learned from many of their mistakes, and will make really great spouses in the future. I also know some single virgins who act completely unintelligent when it comes to relationship fundamentals that could put their future marriage in trouble.

We have to be full of grace when it comes to relationships and be willing to hear people’s stories without discrediting their ability to have a healthy relationship based on their past.

What are some misconceptions you’ve heard about relationships and marriage?

Ryan Leak is the CEO & Founder of the Dallas-based creative agency, Park Bench Pro. He is a church consultant who specializes in media and staffing. You may also recognize him as the romantic groom from the viral video “The Surprise Wedding” along with his lovely new wife, Amanda Roman-Leak. Ryan and his wife have been featured on Good Morning America, The Today Show, CNN, The Queen Latifah Show, and more. He travels the country speaking on healthy relationships. If you’d like to connect with Ryan, please visit ryanleak.com and follow on him on Facebook and Twitter!

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