Being in a marriage is a lot like running in a three-legged race. It’s awkward and messy sometimes. You fall on your face every now and then. But if you do it right, it’s a lot of fun. When your three-legged race/marriage is no longer fun, it might be time to seek marriage counseling services.
The marriages who don’t work out are almost never doing fine, and then one day one person cheats, and it all goes up in smoke overnight (although, that does happens sometimes). More commonly, marriages that don’t work out had a bunch of little problems that never seemed like a big deal, so they were just swept under the carpet. Eventually, the dust under the carpet has turned into a wall between you and your partner, that you can never break down. The trick is to seek marriage counseling services while the pile of marital discord can still be dismantled, and your marriage can once again be a fun three-legged race again.
To help you determine when getting involved in marriage counseling services is the right path for you, we’ve put together a checklist of signs:
- You have the same dang unimportant argument again and again.
When you share a life with someone else, there are bound to be things that you do differently. Maybe you make the bed every single morning, and your spouse doesn’t stress over an unmade bed. Maybe your spouse is a stickler about getting water on the floor after you take a shower, and it’s not something that ever crosses your mind. The point is, if you continue to have the same argument and feel like you’re getting no where, you are not communicating well.
It can feel enraging when you say something that matters to you, and nothing changes. If you don’t feel like like you’re being heard, it’s natural to take a more aggressive approach and yell or say hurtful things. But now, instead of just having an unmade bed, you’ve hurt your partner and your marriage. If you can’t resolve the little issues, you might benefit from talking to a marriage therapist.
- There’s always a reason it’s not a good time to have sex.
Your life is busy. Especially once you start having kids. Now you have life-sucking humans who need you all day and night, and the last thing you want to do while they’re down for their nap is be touched. We get it, when the bedroom becomes less of a priority.
However, intimacy in marriage is very critical for unity and closeness. The lower on your to-do list you make it, the further apart you and your partner grow. In fact, it can be a sign that there is an underlying need that isn’t being met. Perhaps you don’t want to do the deed because you feel so bad about your post-pregnancy body. Perhaps you stopped putting effort into your appearance because your partner stopped noticing when you did. Going through couples therapy will help you identify these issues, and get back to a place where you can’t wait to be in each other’s arms.
- Your favorite things to do never involve each other.
It’s healthy to have hobbies that are just your own. It’s okay to need some alone time every now and then. However, if the time that you enjoy most never involves your spouse, and vice versa, it’s easy to slowly build separate lives where you don’t need one another. Pay attention to the time you spend when you have nothing else to do. Let’s say the kids are in bed and the dishes are done. Do you watch TV in the den while he reads a book in your room? If your “down” time never involves one another, you might be losing the foundation of your relationship, where you just want to be around each other. If this is you, it might be a good idea to get involved in counseling services, so you can learn to be intentional about fusing your life with your spouses.
Being married can be the closest thing on Earth to Heaven, or it can be the closest on Earth to H-E-double hockey sticks. The trick is identifying when you need help, and getting it before it’s too late.
For more information see this. Good references.