Love and marriage may go together like a horse and carriage but sometimes they become unhitched. Marriage without love is like a carriage without a horse…one without the other is not going anywhere. Perhaps your marriage is suffering a severe lack of love and you’re thinking about mounting the nearest available horse and getting the heck out of marriageville.
Wait! Maybe you and your spouse should seek counseling…or better yet be your own counselor. It can be done but it takes a concentrated plan of action from both the husband and wife.
Most couples, in time of trouble, resort to their basic instincts of hate, disrespect, demands and anger. There goes the respect and love that will eventually be replaced by hate which could result in divorce.
You must take action to avoid divorce which is a life changing occurrence, usually not for the better. Create a plan to restore your love and respect. You’ve been playing your marriage by ear day by day and trusting your instincts. This may work for awhile, even a few years, but as marriage breeds apathy you must seek and plan for a rekindling of that old flame
Remember how emotional you were when you first fell in love? When you’re in love your emotions enable you to contribute to each other’s emotional needs. These range from being honest, admiring, communicating and being affectionate. You did and felt these qualities quite naturally early in your relationship. But, as love faded so did your emotions.
Love, no doubt, is the most important quality in a relationship but it takes more sometimes to make a marriage survive. It requires your willingness and ability to care and protect each other. Half hearted love and dedication will make it difficult to swim upstream when the waters get rough.
Know that love is both give and take, but if you’re keeping score of how much you give and your spouse takes your marriage might be doomed from the start. There will be both giving and receiving of bads and goods. Sometimes you’re the giver and sometimes the taker. Know how to do both with love and affection.
It may call for a change in your behavioral patterns. If you’re prone to angry outbursts and criticizing replace these with calmness and compliments. Making your spouse feel good is something you should enjoy doing. Husbands and wives need a certain amount of undivided attention. Don’t let volunteer work, family, work or children get in the way.
As your own counselor you must learn to negotiate and come to a joint agreement that is pleasant and thoughtful. Look at the problems from all sides and that could include more than yours and your spouse. Brainstorm and offer creative solutions. If you get angry, stop negotiating and come back later.
Nobody said marriage is easy and neither is being your own marriage counselor. At least you’re making an effort to become a better spouse in hopes of salvaging your marriage.
Believe in yourself and you will believe in others.