Marriage, How to Make Yours Succeed…
For a long time, (before I got married) I was convinced that the biggest mistake anyone could ever make – was to get married. I mean seriously, do you know how LOW the marriage success rate in the United States is?
I did, and I figured that marriage was surely the best way to ruin a perfectly good relationship.
The state of marriages in this country is NOT encouraging. In America, 49% of all marriages end in divorce. Although, America is #12 on the list of the top 20 countries with the highest divorce stats. Still, the rate of failed marriages is p-r-e-t-t-y high!
In spite of this, I got older, fell in love – and married the man of my dreams, my soul mate. We were going be together forever, I couldn’t have been happier.
Eventually, I grew up, grew out of my naiveté – and got divorced.
Then, for a long time, I believed that the biggest mistake I had ever made, or would ever make – was marrying my ex-husband. I decided that it wasn’t my marriage itself that was disastrous; it was just a matter of marrying the RIGHT person, versus the WRONG one.
Therefore, I convinced myself that if I had just married someone else, anyone else – my marriage would have been a raving success. I of course, had done everything in my power to make the marriage work, I had made no catastrophic, unforgivable mistakes, and the ruin of our marriage could only be laid at my ex-husbands feet.
The divorce was all and only his fault…Too bad I still loved him and regretted the divorce as soon as it was final.
I have never been so wrong in my entire life. Not about loving him, but about getting the divorce.
It took quite a few years, several therapists, a lot of fighting, crying, and icy silences – but in the end we both obtained a great deal of hard-earned maturity and self-insight, and I learned that it wasn’t ALL his fault, and that we could have prevented our divorce.
My husband and I have since reconciled, and I’ve learned a great deal, about what it takes to have a good marriage, and How Not To Get Divorced.
And on this subject, before I move on, I read a great eBook about reconciliation (the art of making up!), its $39 and in my opinion worth 10 times its price. Go here and see how Mr. Jackson has helped over 55,000 people in 77 countries make up!
If only I had learned how to make a marriage work, before I’d gotten married, or while our marriage was falling apart.
I hope that as you’re reading this – you are willing to see that even if you think it’s too late for your marriage, it isn’t. Or, maybe you’re considering getting married, but you’re afraid that the marriage won’t succeed.
I’ve traveled down the long and lonely road of divorce, and I don’t want you to have to take the trip too. If you believe with even a minuscule fraction of your heart, that your marriage is worth saving, then all you have to do is follow my guidelines.
The Key Elements of a Healthy, Stable Marriage
Marriage is supposed to be a partnership; that means that both partners must give to – and receive from – the marriage equally. Both of you must have a commitment to each other, dedication to the family, and honesty with your selves and each other.
Maintaining a happy marriage is not always easy and there will be times when you may have to work very hard just to be in the same room with your spouse, without a deadly weapon – and the idea that you once loved that person with your whole heart and soul, will never even enter your mind.
Stress from our marriage can be hurtful to our children, our jobs, our friends, and family. If we are fighting with our spouse constantly, we will be tense, tired, depressed, angry, and generally just miserable – every second of every day. These types of feelings cause even more stress on the marriage.
It is beneficial for your mental and physical well being to feel secure and fulfilled in your marriage. Happiness matters a great deal to our self-esteem, which in turn affects everything else.
Prevention Is Better Than Representation (And Cheaper!)
These are some good ways that you can make the relationship easier, and better. If you are willing to work on your marriage, you will avoid the heartache of having to work out a divorce settlement.
- It is imperative that you keep the lines of communication open. If you have created the trust of being able to share with your spouse, that is an excellent way to start your lives together. Sharing with each other means more than just talking AT each other, it means having real conversations, laughing together, and even sharing quiet times that are not awkward or icy silences.
Sharing will help both of you to balance the rest of your lives. When things go wrong, but even when everything is fine, your partner is usually the one you want to turn to for understanding and strength.
- Try very hard to listen carefully to what your spouse has to say, whether it is about mundane daily matters, or an issue they are having with the relationship. Giving your whole attention to what they are saying, with patience, and without judgment shows that you are devoted to them.
- Let your spouse know that he or she matters to you, that you enjoy and appreciate their contribution to your life. One of the biggest problems in my marriage was that most of the time, even though deep down, we knew that we loved each other, neither of us ever showed the other that we liked each other. Take opportunities to show your spouse that you value them.
Create special memories
- Every couple has certain little secrets that only they share. For a contented marriage, you need those special memories to be happy ones. Do special things for your spouse and your relationship that will become times you can look back on years later, and smile. Even if it’s just putting a love note in his lunch for work, or sending flowers to her at her job.
Spend time alone together
- Couples, who have been together – happily – for a significant number of years, agree that one of the things crucial for keeping their marriage strong is going out on a “date” with their spouse on a regular basis. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy either, just time together away from the kids, your jobs, and the basic stresses of your lives. Spending time alone together helps you to remember the special feelings that made you fall in love with each other in the first place.
Treat each other with love, respect, and kindness.
- No matter how crappy your day was, or how annoyed you are that you were stuck in traffic, it is vital that you and your spouse always treat each other with consideration. Compassion, tenderness, and respect are vital in happy marriages. Trust me, taking your frustrations from a bad day out on your spouse, is NOT conducive to marital bliss.
Dedicate yourself to your marriage
- Marriage isn’t easy, and for yours to be mutually fulfilling and comfortable, you have to devote yourself to keeping it that way. This can be especially difficult during life’s rough patches, but it is important that you put your marriage first.
- If you and your spouse are committed to making your marriage a success, there is nothing that the two of you cannot accomplish. You have to make sure that the marriage is getting the time and attention it needs. Nothing – not houseplants, pets, kids, or marriages – thrives or grows if not nurtured.
Forgive and forget – the little things
- Always make an effort to get over the minor annoyances and irritations that happen in your marriage. Even huge mistakes are deserving of forgiveness if your marriage and your spouse are important enough to you.
During our reconciliation, my husband and I both realized that a major reason for our divorce, was that we both held had major grudges for minor issues, and that those little resentments built up and contributed to the big problems.
Research done to determine what couples feel is most important to a happy marriage indicates that most couples value these factors above all others.
Honesty – with each other, and with yourself
Openness – not keeping secrets from each other
Respect – for each other and yourself
Compassion – caring for each other and being supportive
Commitment – knowing that you are important to each other
Compromise – give and take have to be equal
Equality – sharing household and financial responsibilities
Laughter – being able to laugh with and at each other
Security – feeling like you are safe and loved
Another research study discovered the top 10 reasons for divorce, so if you work on preventing these problems, or at least know what to watch out for – you’ll have an unbeatable advantage.
- Infidelity – being cheated on, or doing the cheating
- Abandonment – emotional or physical
- Dishonesty – lying about anything, little or big things
- Abuse – physical, sexual, and emotional
- Addiction – substance, alcohol, or gambling
- Incompatibility – having no common interests, values, or beliefs
- Inflexibility – not being able to compromise or agree about major issues
- Lack of communication – not being able to share with each other
- Differences – in cultural, religious, parenting, or lifestyle beliefs and practices
- Financial – stress over bills or income, or the lack thereof
These issues may seem like excellent reasons to get divorced, and in many situations (IF YOU’RE BEING ABUSED, LEAVE NOW!) – Divorce is unfortunately the only answer.
However, if your love for each other is strong enough, and you are both willing to face your own faults, forgive each other for your faults and mistakes – and you are BOTH willing to work on making the marriage better, then you can.
Luckily for you, I’ve already learned these lessons, the hard way – and you can use my hard earned wisdom to learn how not to get divorced.
P.S. Making up is an art. It truly is. There are no black and white answers. But unlike other, tougher arts (like the art of making money!), it’s an art anyone can master with just a BIT of care, patience and understanding.
I mentioned earlier the guy that helped over 50,000 (from over 70 countries) people get back together, the great Mr. Jackson! I just forgot to mention he posted a great video on his website you m-i-g-h-t want to watch