What It’s Like Being Married to Your Opposite
Written by Phylicia Masonheimer | November 19, 2018
My husband, Josh, and I weren’t drawn to each other when we first met—or for the months after that. We dated other people and remained friends throughout. We didn’t like the same music. Didn’t like the same movies. Didn’t play the same games. Didn’t have the same friends. Later on, we discovered, through personality testing, that our personalities are completely opposite in every way—we don’t even share the same love language.
We’ve been together almost seven years now, and if there’s one thing I’ve learned through our dating and marriage relationship, it’s this: God makes the impossible possible. We married each other because we shared common values and we were great friends (and by that point, were attracted to each other, too!). But when you are that different, conflict is inevitable. The journey to where we are today was a long one littered with hard work and the grace of God.
So what’s it like being married to your opposite? Here is the inside scoop.
You’re constantly in for a surprise. Because we’re so different, there’s always something new emerging from within both of us. Josh might show me a playlist from when he was 17 (songs I NEVER would have listened to) or I might reveal the poem that won a national contest in high school. These are things that probably would have come up earlier if we’d had them in common, but because we don’t, they come out later on. You never get bored with your opposite!
Communication becomes an art form. Even though we know one another well, each situation calls for communication in a specific way. If Josh is feeling neglected (his love language is quality time), he’s not going to be as spontaneous as he usually is, and I’ll need to approach the issue in a specific way. If I’m not feeling valued for my work, I’m not going to be as cheerful and he’ll need to tear down some walls to figure out what’s wrong. It’s a dance!
You get used to new things. I resisted this for a long time and it did my marriage no favors. When you marry your opposite, you’re inviting hobbies, books and people into your life that you wouldn’t have otherwise chosen. Josh is a bit of a nerd (in the best of ways!), and I’ve gotten used to corny jokes, Star Wars references and obscure YouTube videos. He’s grown accustomed to theological tirades, stacks of nonfiction books in every corner and hordes of my extroverted friends hanging out in the living room on a weekly basis. Resisting new things will hinder your relationship and prevent appreciation for who your spouse really is.
You’ll become a better version of yourself. Josh and I have been “iron sharpening iron” (Proverbs 17:17) for these last seven years. Sparks have flown…in good and bad ways! But through our marriage we’ve been refined into better people than we were before. We’ve each taken on attributes of the other person. He’s become more bold and forthright; I’ve become more kind and patient. God has used us to work His sanctification in one another’s lives.
Marrying your opposite isn’t for everyone. It’s a hard road in many ways. My encouragement? Don’t rule someone out just because they aren’t your “type” or don’t look the way you imagined. Josh had the heart of a man who wanted God’s will. That was all we needed—and all we still need!