Marriage appears wonderfully endearing to the single person who has never ever married, and probably to the divorced man or woman who hankers for some thing to arrest their longing for companionship or sexual release, but marriage for nearly all of us is really a tough work at times. (And I can say this even as a representative of my wife!). We carry so much of ourselves into our marriages – which is both a good and a poor point.
We bring in expectations of becoming ‘met’ by our partners: that they will satisfy us sexually, not spend too considerably income, not seek out to handle us, that they will want to invest time with us. We also carry in expectations of what our partners need to carry to us: their virtues of diligence and moderation and sanctity and kindness – to title just four. We are disappointed when they don’t measure up to our previously unconscious expectations – that have now become conscious due to our encroaching annoyance.
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If your relationship with your spouse on the rocks and you’re considering therapy, you might be wondering if it will really help. That’s a fair question. Does marriage counseling work for everyone? Of course not, but it may help you, especially if you don’t wait too long.
Even in the field of psychotherapy where the goal is often to understand and gain some control in regards to emotion, this is outside our choiceful or volitional control. We can learn to manage and understand and learn from our emotions; we cannot control them directly. Our Mid-Brain (the mammalian brain) is in charge of that.
We have “built in” needs; needs with which we are born. These include air, water, food, and shelter. Other built in needs we have are for physical closeness and emotional openness; what we call “bonding.” Without the skills to confide openly and honestly, listen empathetically, and solve problems effectively in an environment of good will and trust, we are unable to bond successfully.
Many people see conflict as something to avoid at all costs. Others are constantly engaging in conflict because they feel they must look out for number one and don’t know how to resolve conflict without a full blown battle. Sometimes, depending on the situation, you may avoid a fight; while at other times, you attack before you even have time to think about it.
One day I decided to do something about it. I just could not stand it anymore. I wanted to be happy, enthusiastic, loving, energetic person I once was. And I wanted my partner to smile again, love me again just like when we just met.
They get married too soon, and too fast. Be it for love and romance, or for the sake of a baby that’s on the way, or two kids just looking for a way to get out of their parents house, improper planning is one of the root causes of marital conflict.
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There are basically two reactions towards anything that displeases a person. Some people blow up. They may shout, scream, rant or rave and after they have done so, they cool down and return to normal. Others on the other hand, keep their anger or bitterness inside them by clamming up. They may display their displeasure in their faces or body language but they would not vocalize it or act on it there and then.
Why does marriage counseling work for some couples, and not for others? One of the main reasons that some relationships don’t benefit from professional help is that the couple waited too long to seek help.
There are basically three key ingredients to compromise each person gives a little, each person gets as many needs met as possible, and each person works for the good of the relationship, not their own desires.
Here is one principle my wife and I have practiced ever since our courting days. Never go to bed with unresolved conflicts. Even if you have to stay up all night to talk things through, do it if it can restore peace between you both. Then you can both sleep in peace. I know it is not always possible but this is a good practice and you should work towards it as far as possible.
Marriage conflict is par for the course but does not have to end in divorce. Conflict can be transformed into harmony if you are willing to find new solutions to problems. Admit when you are wrong and apologize. Most of us refuse to believe we have done anything wrong when the finger gets pointed at us.
Physical abuse, fertility issues, cheating, or just plain boredom or lack of love. These can break the trust that is so essential to a relationship. So how do you save a marriage that has reached this point?.
Not only you meet your REAL spouse after 5, 10, 15 or more years for the first time, but very often that’s the time when you meet the REAL SELF that you are for the first time! I am simply amazed, when I hear the stories of either successful or failed marriages and how character either built them up or brought them down to destruction.
Not long ago a mother confided in me (after a number of conversations) that after 32 years of marriage she was actually flipping because she was comparing her daughter’s marriage with hers and she saw her daughter happier than she had herself ever been. She was actually contemplating divorce to find someone that would provide her with what she thought was missing in her life.
Conflicts often make couples feel bad particularly when they can’t meet halfway. Some can dwell on it for a long time to the point of giving them stress and depression although others can recover from their fight soon after they’ve expressed their views and emotions.
Marriage isn’t easy, and after the first few years of initial bliss, conflicts will inevitably arise. This is normal. But how do you know when your marriage has reached the point of being in danger? Some important clues are things like substance abuse.
Marriage saving secrets are available to any couple who wants to have a long lasting marriage free from the problems prevalent in our society today. The life blood of any marriage depends on each partner’s ability to care, to feel attachment, to love, develop intimacy, express emotion and to commit to resolving marriage conflicts without any feeling of conquest.
But what if you’re afraid you’ve waited too long? Does marriage counseling work if only one spouse is truly committed to saving the marriage? That really depends on a lot of things. The good news is that many marriages and relationships have been saved through the dedicated efforts of one caring partner.
Consequently, I never knew my father – a reality that I regret to this day.) Responsibility, Married couples often find themselves fighting over the distribution of common, everyday responsibilities. These range from cooking and cleaning to shopping, budgeting and bringing home the lion’s share of the income.