3 Ways the Comparison Trap Can Kill Your Marriage

By October 20, 2015January 30th, 2018Communication, Self Reflection, Time

Comparison is a trap and a dangerous gauge for the health of our lives and relationships. It’s often based on partial truths and unattainable reality. Most of us know this, yet we all do it. And thanks to social media, highlights, and sound bytes flooding our daily moments, we step willingly into the comparison trap early and often in our days.

The problem with comparison is that we tend to do it under the influence of extreme emotions or insecurities. A fight with your spouse can simultaneously shout a lie that every other marriage is perfect. Swing to the other end of the pendulum when all cylinders are firing, and in walks pride, telling you that you have it more together than the next person. Seasons of insecurity may be the strongest bait of all. We trade vulnerability and honesty for illusion and comparison.

Deep down, we all know that nobody is perfect, and there is no such thing as a perfect marriage. Yet how easily we stray from reality. Comparison is a thief of joy, and if not kept in check, can kill your marriage. Here are three traps we can often fall into.


The whole idea of “Keeping up with the Joneses” isn’t a new one, yet it is unarguably magnified in the days of social media. The reality of life is that we all progress and hit benchmarks at different times. Defined success to one person or family may not be the same for the next. It can be far too easy to look around and feel like you’re not measuring up. You’re not making enough money, haven’t gotten the big promotion, or perhaps your business is failing when it seems everybody else’s is flourishing.

Remember those partial truths and unattainable realities? Those apply here. You’re running a unique race with unique people. Your life isn’t meant to look the same as the next person’s, so comparison is a waste of your time. Want to escape the comparison trap? Look far less to you right and left and far more to God. Run your race with your people. Stop comparing and start making a difference.


There are fewer things that can destroy your marriage faster than this one. You married your spouse for his or her unique strengths and personality. You said your vows and made a sacred commitment in front of God and your family. Your spouse will not complete you and will never meet your every need. There will be days and even seasons where you may not be on the same page. But the most dangerous thing you can do is compare your spouse to another man or woman. It takes your focus off of your greatest gift and onto a false reality.


Have these thoughts ever entered your mind? “They seem so happy.” “They never fight.” “They have it all.” These are dangerous and distorted views of reality. Perhaps try asking yourself this question: “Is my happiness really the point in marriage, anyway?”

At the core, marriage exists to display God’s glory. Aside from the church, it is the only institution that God created. It is a sacred union designed for two people to join together–not to compare themselves to other flawed and sinful human beings, but to live together for the glory of God. If this is our goal, then comparison will fall off our lives naturally.

At the end of the day, we can either endlessly search out ways to measure up to society, or we can choose to live out our marriages for the glory of God alone. Only there will we trade the trap of comparison for the gifts of grace and truth.


  • Von says:

    My wife is denying that she compares me to other people by saying that she was only joking with our friend to teach me how to be expressive.

    Our friend really did approached me and told me I should buy my wife flowers same as to what he did for his girlfriend.

    Am I being too sensitive? I just don’t feel comfortable with what happened…

  • Julez Brown says:

    My husband says that he’s sorry but the thing that is most attractive to him is large breasts and a skinny waist like when we were first married 20 years ago. Now I’ve had 4 kids and I’m not that overweight 5’6 (165). But he’s not attracted to me.
    I know this is his issue but I realize this is affecting our marriage more than I thought. Any advise …I want to approach this with godly lenses.

  • Lei says:

    My husband conpates me to trash a lot. His reasoning is he compares me to trash so that I can be disgusted and not do what I did again. Which was forget an open candy wrapper in the night stand drawer that I had eaten the previous night because I got hungry before bed. I was taking care of my 5 month old and its was 3am. So I woke up in a hurry at 730am cause the little one was a wake and hungry I grabbed my 2 bottles of the night stand and i forgot the damn candy wrapper. So when he found it later that day because he was doing the bed I got yelled at and compared to trash for 15 minutes. Because when I get in my comfort zone I leave things where is convenient just like trash. So I get compared to this cousin of his who is trash so that I can feel like trash.

    He justifies it so well it leaves me no room to defend myself. I have asked so many times to not compare me but in every argument I’m compared. Yet I have never compared him.

    • Ara says:

      This is very abusive and beyond controlling. It will only get worse. As hard as it may be, getting out of this relationship is your best bet.

Leave a Reply