Tag Archives: compromise in a relationship

The Conundrum Of Compromise

"Compromise is but the sacrifice of one right or good in the hope of retaining another- too often ending in the loss of both." Tryon Edwards


Marriage is the combining of two lives into one. From a romantic perspective, this is a beautiful thing. From a practical perspective, it’s counterproductive. Marriage is like a business merger. It involves two separate people with separate goals and separate resources available to accomplish their respective goals. When you get married, you join another person in a business contract. Then your assets and goals become inseparable.

This works great in two scenarios:

1: If all of your goals are exactly the same.

2: Neither of you has any goals.

The first scenario has never happened. The second is more common than it should be. If you don’t fall into either, you’re going to have to make compromises with your lover. You’ve probably heard someone say, “compromise is the key to a successful relationship.” This sounds fair, but it oversimplifies life.

Compromise means neither person gets exactly what they want so both parties can get a little of what they want. Think about this slowly: The end result is that nobody gets what they really want. Let me repeat that, “Nobody gets what they want.”

Happiness is achieved by fulfilling your wants. If you rarely get to fulfill your wants, you’ll rarely get to experience full happiness… unless you lower your expectations. In other words, unless you give up on your hopes and dreams. Marriage is a doomed business venture if it makes both parties unhappy until they give up and accept a substandard life, all the while using cognitive dissonance to excuse away the negative realities of marriage until they no longer live in reality.


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