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I was in a broken marriage.
You would think that being married for ten long years will make our marriage break-proof.
But it did not. My marriage with my wife was such a rollercoaster that I literally got stressed and dizzy on that ride.
I wanted to get out of my marriage.
"This is not worth it". It is what I would say to myself ever since we started having problems in our relationship.
I would just look for another woman that will love me for who I am and will provide everything that I needed as a man and as a husband.
But fortunately, I met someone.
His name was Larry Stinson. He was a friend of a friend that I met at one of the family gatherings.
It may have been faith that brought us together to talk and converse about our life especially our marriage.
I do not often volunteer my personal affairs with a stranger but something told me to tell him what I was going through on that day.
So we talked for hours as I mention the problems that we were undergoing as a couple.
For those men who are currently reading this article, it is not normal to share your problems with your wife to a complete stranger.
It is not only disrespectful on the part of your wife but you may also be unconsciously damaging the image of your partner in front of another person.
But what happened to my talk with Larry was a special case.
If someone is willingly going to help you with your problem, you can give out some information about your problem with the promise from him that he will not divulge it to other people as some sort of gossip.
To make the long story short, I followed his step-by-step procedure on what I need to do to fix my broken marriage and save it from divorce.
At first, the things I needed to do was very difficult. It was not natural in me to do everything that he said about fixing my marriage.
Larry said that if I want to mend my marital relationship with my wife, I should go to great lengths to get her back.
What happened in our marriage is usually what occurs in most marriages in the US.
We had no specific problems that resulted in our broken marriage.
It is just that what we felt was that our marriage is falling apart and that we did not love each other anymore.
You might be undergoing a widely different version of marriage problems. It might be that your spouse is having an affair or you met someone at work. It may be financial problems or child-related issues.
Your problems may be different but they are all just the same: It is a relationship issue with your spouse. And you have to fix it.
I almost decided to divorce my wife because I thought that it was the only way out.
I said to myself that since 40 to 50 percent of Americans are opting for divorce according to the American Psychological Association, I might as well choose to be part of that statistic.
But Larry said not to give up on my marriage. The fact that we are not yet divorced tells us that we still have hope.
And so, he gave me the best pieces of advice that anyone could ever give me. Here they are:
If you will go back to the first months after your wedding, you will remember that you never got angry with your spouse.
It was all butterflies and flowers in your relationship. You never shouted at each other nor hurt one another through words and actions.
But fast forward to today and you will see that all that is happening inside your so-called marriage is just hate and anger.
You will say that this is not what a great and healthy marriage is supposed to be like. So, you look for a suitable partner to replace your spouse in pursuit of a “greater” marriage.
First of all, it is normal to feel angry with your spouse.
People who do not fight are the ones that we should be worried about.
Two people with different behaviors and personalities will eventually find a ground wherein they do not agree with the circumstances.
You will reach a point that you will hate each other’s guts because your spouse is not listening to what you have to say.
Again, I will say this to you, this scenario is normal to a marriage.
What matters is your response to the events of anger in your relationship.
Do you keep that anger boiling up inside of you as you wait for the right time to pounce? Or are you going to diffuse that anger by talking to your husband or wife?
This is one difficult step in fixing the marriage.
My questions were:
Hold off on those questions and instead, you should ask this one to yourself:
Are you willing to sacrifice your ego to save your marriage?
Can you leave your pride outside of the home in the hopes of mending the relationship that you lost because you love yourself more than your spouse?Are people really that selfish? The answer is no.
According to an article published on the Harvard Business Review, our basis for self-sufficiency and survival of the fittest comes from the economics point of view from most of the first economists of their time.
It was Adam Smith and his “The Wealth of Nations” book that was published in 1776 as well as Charles Darwin’s claims that support the selfish behaviors of people.
But it was indicated in the article that the concepts built around economics should just stay in economics.
Science should not borrow these truths and apply them to people’s behaviors.
Scientists will continue to disregard the claims of economics’ certainty about the complexities of human nature.
Go for the little things that can make your spouse smile once again.
A nice breakfast, a bouquet of rose, or a candle-light dinner are ways in order to win her back.
At first, your husband or wife may not recognize your efforts or, be more irritated with you.
But as she sees you doing things that you do not do anymore to make her happy and win her back, she will also have thoughts of fixing the marriage herself.
Have you noticed that angry people always want to talk more?
Even those who seldom engage in normal conversations will find time to express themselves in anger.
The same is true with married couples.
A husband or a wife will either choose their spouse as the destination of their vented anger or they will look for someone to ease their stressed hearts by talking to their friends or family members.The problem lies in the cause of anger.
How can you vent your anger to your spouse if the source of that anger is your husband or wife?
You are the first option and hopefully, the only option.
Many extramarital affairs arise when a married person confides with someone from the opposite sex hoping to ease his anger and his pain.
No matter who or what the cause of the problem or anger is, the husband or the wife should be the one that will give time to lend an ear to his or her spouse.
Spouses who are angry at each other can’t wait to take their turn at saying their rants toward one another.
Instead of listening, the husband or the wife will think of the faults of the other to get back at his spouse.
Instead of focusing on hurting your partner, you should open your heart and your ears to what he or she is saying.
She is your partner, after all. As I have said earlier, we will aim to please.
Hold off your tongue and listen intently to what your wife has to say.
Digest everything. You can even write them on paper.
You can ask for a moment to think about what she said.
After thinking rationally about her thoughts about you and your marriage, you can give your honest but polite feedback about all of them.
An angry mouth can easily be diffused by a humble heart.
When we are angry, our intention, most of the time, is to hurt the person who hurt us.
It’s sort of fighting back and having vengeance for the negative things that the other person said.
In your marriage, you should remove all thoughts of hurting your spouse. You are one unit of society.
You promised during your wedding to love her and to be united with her in faith.
If you hurt your spouse, you will be hurting yourself. No one in his right mind would hurt himself, right?
You already have a broken marriage.
Avoid pinpointing the mistakes of your spouse. You are way over that phase. Instead, you should focus on the solution to repair your marriage.
One way to do this is to ask for a marriage counselor, an elder or head of your religious organization, or a therapist.
These people are unbiased in your situation. They will eagerly listen to each of you while looking for the problems that exist in your marriage.
You, of course, will be biased to yourself and your spouse to herself. But a third-party listener will make a rational decision on the specific faults of each side of the relationship.
Most husbands or wives invest more time on other things rather than their partners.
You may spend more time at work, in your hobbies, with your friends, or on your kids.
You wake up early in the morning and stay in the office to provide the needs of your wife and your kids.
Work will take high priority but it will not have your top priority.
If given a choice between your work and your spouse, you should always pick your partner.
They should be given time. Friends are also important in your life. But your hobbies and your friends should not get in the way of your marriage.
Unconsciously, you may be taking time away from your wife or husband and spending them all for your children.
Your kids are important. And you both should take care of them.
But your spouse needs your time, your attention, most of all, your efforts.
Never steal the time that you saved for your spouse to be used for your children. Your spouse is your topmost priority no matter what.
Never give up on your marriage even if it is now broken.
When you reach that point, push yourself to contemplate other ways to reach out to your spouse.
If you think that you have exhausted all your efforts, gather the strength to give more for the marriage.
Your spouse is the person that you promised to be with for the rest of your life. He or she is your love, your forever.
Do everything that you can to fix and save your broken marriage.
It will all be worth it!
Mike Zhang is the founder of FamilyLifeShare.com. Family Life Share aims to share cool knowledge and unique experience about family life, marriage, love, relationships, Parenting and life tips. We want to provide high-quality content to people who are looking for these topics.
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