Whether you embark on your honeymoon or postpone that epic vacation in favor of a little R&R at home, the first week of marriage is a big deal. If you're not sure what exactly to expect — other than a high of having finally tied the knot to the love of your life — we asked two experts to open our eyes to what really happens that first week.
You'll ride a roller-coaster of emotions.
Just as you felt up-and-down in the days and weeks leading up to your wedding day, it's likely you'll experience a wide range of emotions your first week of marriage. "These can range from excitement to anticipation to trepidation and even a sense of anticlimax," says Kat Van Kirk, Ph.D., L.A.-based licensed marriage and sex therapist and author of The Married Sex Solution. "What is perhaps even more interesting is the fact that a couple may not share the same emotion. There may be differences based on gender, age or experience, including a prior marriage."
Sex will be ah-mazing.
That doesn't mean you'll have it every night, or even every other night. What is does mean, explains Denise J. Charles, relationship coach and author of How To Have Mind-Blowing Sex Without Losing Your Brain, is that marriage adds a new spice to even the sexiest sex lives. "Sexual access is likely to be a big deal right after the wedding," she says. "For couples who chose to abstain prior to their wedding, sex is the ultimate consummation of their union and will likely be a significant post-wedding crowning point. And even for those who may not have abstained, lovemaking can take on a whole new meaning as their marriage have solidified their commitment and is likely to add something new to their sexual intimacy."
It can be a rough return to reality.
"The fantasy of the wedding is gone," describes Van Kirk. And while some couples stay on their best dating behavior, others "will finally feel like they can let it all hang out," she says. No matter how long you've been together or whether you lived together before you tied the knot, "it seems that having that piece of paper comes loaded with expectations." And you may find your partner doesn't meet each one, she warns.