There’s an old saying about business, that anyone not making mistakes in business isn’t doing anything. The same is true of any human endeavor, including marital crises, which are common. And how a couple responds to a crisis is a determining factor in whether or not the marriage will survive.
Marriage crises are caused by a wide variety of factors: lack of communication, lack of common interests, too many outside interests, career interference, marital infidelity and indifference.
All of these can lead to severe marital problems and maybe even divorce. A combination of several of these factors is nearly always fatal.
A married couple who aren’t communicating or can’t communicate on at least some levels have a relationship that isn’t going anywhere. If a couple cannot share their goals, dreams, desires, interests and common activities they are not particularly well-suited.
In this day of no-fault divorces, marriages are shattered for far less than a lack of communication.
“My wife doesn’t understand me” was the plaintive whine of a philandering male a half-century past. How the heck could she understand him when he never talked to her about anything?
Nowadays there is no reason not to communicate, what with cell phones, Blackberries and all the other digital electronics marvels. Every other person you see driving, walking, sitting in the park or standing in line is using their cell phone to communicate with someone.
A married couple should make an effort to share both family and outside-the-family activities. They should discuss their plans for their home, their children, and their vacations, and they should “hang out” together as much as possible.
If a couple has children, hopefully that will be a common interest. Other than kids, a couple who share hobbies, sports and sports spectating, and outdoor activities are experiencing a number of common interests.
A marital crisis arises when the man hangs out with his buddies watching sports on the tube, while the woman involves herself with her children and friends. They are together only at night when they go to bed.
Each has their own career and circle of friends. Why are they married? There must have been some common attraction when they were first dating, but they never developed anything beyond that initial physical attraction (isn’t that where it all starts?).
Often a couple’s individual careers carry them in opposite directions. This can cause a strain on a marriage. One way to avert this is to make sure to have a lot of other mutual activities every week.
Visualize this: A man leaves home for work in the morning and the parting image is that of his wife still in her robe getting ready for her job. At the office all the people are dressed for work and are on their best social behavior.
It is easy for a guy to develop interest in the women with whom he works. He is only seeing them in their best light, not in robes and sleep-mussed hair. A business lunch or a few drinks after work and the trap is baited.
A smart man or woman avoids any emotional entanglements at work or anywhere else. If they focus on their home, their mate and their family, they seldom stray. Both partners should try to spend some time with each other when they are groomed and at their best.
A common complaint from people in a marital crisis is that their partner seems indifferent to their relationship. Whether this is actual or imagined, the crisis it causes is very real.
Indifference goes back to the lack of communication, the lack of common interests and the hanky-panky going on at the office.
The cure for indifference is to establish dialogue, nurture the intimacy with your mate, and work at the relationship.