10 Reasons Why Married Couples Grow Apart (Part II)

This is a continuation of part one of this article which covered aspects such as communication, paying attention, affection and staying connected. We will continue to explore some of the underlying reasons why many married couples seem to be drifting apart and offer suggestions how to prevent or minimize these pitfalls. Being aware of the marital problems and actively working to avoid them can help restore or saved a marriage in trouble.

6. Lack of understanding. A lot of the frustration between married couples arises because one partner feels the other just doesn't understand them. But maybe they would understand if the situation was communicated to them better. It may be clear to you but it really needs to be clear to them. Explain the problem in a different way and give them a chance. Don't be vague and if you have to, break it down in smaller components. BE PATIENT! It may take longer for them to understand. Have them repeat the scenario in their own words so that they can translate it into something they can understand. If they want to work the problem out with you, then a solution will be found and met.

7. No teamwork. A marriage is the union of two people working together towards one main goal- to be happy with each other. There are plenty of times when you two are not physically together but there still needs to be a mutual connection so your marriage can run smoothly. Teamwork depends on communication; letting the other person know what you're doing to keep up your end of the deal. A simple message telling the other person that you took care of the bills this month or went grocery shopping let's them know that they don't need to worry about those issues. In this two-person team, each individual has their own responsibilities to tend to. If each side pulls through, the stress levels will not be so high and you can move on to the next matter. It's like rowing; if only one side of the boat is paddling, you'll continue to go in circles and you'll never reach your destination.

8. Little compromise. When you're single in this world, it's every man for him self. But in a marriage, it's crucial to have some "give and take." Somebody has to cook or clean or pick up the kids, that's a given. But if time, effort, and energy allows for it, go the extra mile and offer to do or help with one of your spouse's duties, especially if you can tell their energy level is low. You may end up putting a great deal of effort into the task but the outcome will exceed the energy exerted. Your spouse will see and appreciate your deed and will want to repay you when your energy level is low. As far as arguing goes, pick your battles. If you can tell your partner feels strongly about a certain issue, a suggestion would be to back down. However, if you feel strongly on the opposing subject, try negotiating a deal out where both of you are happy. If you give a little, an understanding partner will give as much as you. Once you inch closer and closer to each other, a happy medium will be met.

9. A need for organization. Many people feel their lives are chaotic when their home is a mess. The positive energy that comes from an organized home can spread through out many areas in your life, which is why it's so important to create a system that sorts out your domestic matters. A few suggestions may be to designate a specific place to put your incoming and outgoing mail. If you feel it necessary, make an official "Inbox" and "Outbox" so there is no confusion as to what bills or letters need to be mailed and which ones need to be read. Another idea is to use a bulletin board or dry erase board. This is a place to leave "I'll be back soon" notes or grocery lists or "Things To Do" lists. As the chores are completed, for example, they can be crossed off the list that is out in the open so everyone can see. This may sound a bit clerical but running a home is very similar to running an office and in order to have an efficient workplace, all involved parties need to be informed; just like at home.

10. Lack of knowledge. Love is a very important factor in a marriage but think about this? say you're offered a promotion in a field you're not too familiar with but always wanted to learn more about. You may really love the idea of a better job or career change and will love the pay even more but you should ask yourself if you're really that prepared to take on all the challenges and responsibilities that come with that promotion. Maybe before taking the job, you'll need training and more knowledge to build confidence and skill in that field. The same principles can be applied to marriage. If you're not ready to deal with the challenges and difficulties of marriage, maybe you should educate yourself more so you do feel comfortable. Even if you do feel you're ready, read up on marriage matters and watch other married couples to gather book and real life tips and guide lines. The more you know ahead of time, the less unfortunate surprises you'll have and the more you'll be able to advance past the little obstacles that others can get hung up on. This will decrease the stress levels in your marriage and free up time so you can focus on more important concerns such as bonding with your spouse.

This list is not entirely comprehensive as there are many other factors that can occur. However, these ten points seem to address the most issues that are plaguing today's couples, many of which may not seem so obvious. I feel that your marriage can definitely improve even if you only practice a few of these points. The key word however is practice. Good Luck.

© 2004 Kristin Craft. You may freely distribute this article in your newsletter, on your website or in your print publication provided you include the copyright and resource box at the end. Hyperlinks should remain active whenever possible. Notification would be appreciated but not required.

Kristin Craft is the owner and webmaster of marriage-success.com Marriage Help which provides helpful tips and resources for married couples and those considering marriage. Couples that are experiencing difficulties in the marriage can especially benefit by visiting Save My Marriage. ===============================================

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