“A good marriage is one which allows for change and growth in the individuals and in the way they express their love.” – Pearl S. Buck
When two people marry, it means they have entered into a big commitment. They vow that they should stay with each other through sickness and in health, for richer or for poorer, till death do them part. Getting into a marriage relationship is the sign of the fullness of their deep romantic love for each other. Yet, their love for each other is tested in the course of time. First, there would be the adjustment period. All couples go through that. There is a saying that you only really get to know the person if both of you are living under one roof.
The routine of everyday life brings unrealistic expectations. Marital discontent comes in and it is expressed shortly just after the honeymoon fever wears off. This is the time when imperfections are revealed. Shortcomings become magnified. Some eccentric behavior which you found “cute” before now becomes irritating. Aside from your own problems as a couple, you have to deal with in-law relationships, money matters, work schedules and other conflicts which have become the cause of stress and anxiety.
When negative emotions and behavior take over, it becomes the perfect recipe for marriage disconnect. Unless you are aware of your own hurtful attitudes or actions, chances are, you won’t do something about it. Marriage involves accepting who that person really is. We only need to practice self-control and learn to turn expectations into appreciation.
The following strategies will show you how to bring back that “zip” in your relationship and divorce-proof your marriage:
- UNDERSTANDING – We all need reassurance. Reinforce this by showing affection, a simple praise, hug or kiss will do. We should learn to communicate our feelings to our spouse. Don’t be defensive. When you have a minor spat…say “I’m sorry.” and really mean it. The sooner you do this, the sooner your partner will stop resenting you.
- LEARN TO ACCEPT– All marriages go through certain challenges. The one that you married turns out not to be the “angel” that you envisioned or the “knight in shining armor.” Real love takes a lot of patience. So go beyond your illusions on what or how your spouse should be. Rather, focus on yourself and start to make the necessary changes needed to improve who you are as a mate.
- MEET HALFWAY– In every situation, especially when you reach the point that you are angry, hurt, and frustrated — you have to learn how to meet halfway. In other words, you must know how to compromise and negotiate. No two human beings are exactly alike. So settle your differences and learn to forgive each other quickly. Don’t let the sun go down without you and your mate finding a way to make it right.
- REKINDLE – How do you refresh and fix a troublesome marriage and bring back the love and intimacy? Work on your marriage. Like life itself….marriage is not a bed of roses. You have to work with your partner by investing time, love, money, and interest and support in each other. Bring back the closeness by being honest, non-argumentative, and non-judgmental and non-critical. Being happy together brings good mental health, physical health, spiritual health as well as emotional health.
When you take responsibility for being in charge of keeping the romance alive, you allow your marriage to blossom the way it was meant to be.
Shan White specializes in working with women in preventing or recovering from the heartache of divorce.
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