Common Marriage Problems: How to Fix Them
When we get married, none of us think that it will end in divorce. Yet, the divorce rate, though improved in recent years, is still between 40-50%. Why is that? It’s because so many couples allow these common marriage problems to sneak into their marriages and don’t know how to fix them. Let’s change that!
1. Tight Finances
Finances are one of the most prevalent marriage problems for a lot of us. And when your finances are tight, the more challenging it is to work something out.
Many relationships have a spender and a saver. Some have two spenders, some have two savers, and some are balanced well. Spenders, I hate to say this, but your partner has the edge on you.
Ultimately, your goal in your finances is to do what is best for you both as a couple. Generally, that means saving more, and less reckless spending, especially when things are tight.
If you are going to spend money, make sure you communicate with your partner before you make purchases. Yes, even the small ones. When there is no communication on purchases, trust gets eroded fast, and it will start to affect other aspects of your marriage.
One part where the saver might be in the wrong is when it comes to making investments. Often times if there is a risk, the saver will want to not take it, even if there is earning potential.
When you have disagreements on investments, know that you and your partner want what is financially better for the relationship, you just disagree on how to make it better. It’s important to discuss, and decide together what will be best for your future financial goals.
2. Parenting Styles
Among the most common marriage problems is how to parent your children. We were all raised differently than our spouse, so we usually have different ideas on how our children should be raised.
Realizing that you both have different beliefs when it comes to raising kids is half the battle. It’s easy for perspectives to get skewed, and just assume that your spouse would automatically choose to raise your children the same way you would.
Part of avoiding this marriage problem is to be careful not to make any assumptions – expect that you and your spouse will have differences of opinion at some point, even if your personal values align very closely.
And then, just like many other marriage problems, compromise will the key to your success. Let’s say you and your spouse aren’t seeing eye-to-eye on your childrens’ nutrition. Maybe your spouse is pretty lax and doesn’t mind if they eat fast food a few times a week. But you, on the other hand, feel adamant that your kids eat a strict, whole food diet all the time.
How do we solve this marriage problem? Compromise. Find where you have common ground. Surely, you both care about your kids growing into healthy adults. Start from there, and see where you can allow for a little give and take.
3. Intimacy Issues
Intimacy issues plague a lot of marriages. It makes sense, the longer two people are familiar with each other, the less exciting sex gets. But intimacy is not only about sex.
It’s about simply touching, cuddling, showing affection, and in general being comfortable with one another.
One of the best ways to start getting your sex life back into control is to make sure to be affectionate with each other. Kiss every night before bed, or before one of you leaves the house. Hug each other, just for the sake of being close.
Cuddle frequently. Cuddling is scientifically proven to improve the connection between spouses. And just cuddle sometimes. It doesn’t always have to lead to sex (great if it does).
4. Fading Emotional Connection
This is one of the more challenging marriage problems to deal with because it is so multi-faceted. There are a number of reasons why you might start to feel disconnected from your spouse or vice versa.
Lack of intimacy, poor communication, and diverging interests can all have an effect on how you two feel about each other. But the bigger issue is that you have not continued to get to know each other.
That is the biggest reason why emotional connections fade. If you feel like you don’t know your spouse anymore, its probably because you don’t. You don’t know who they have become.
At some point down the line, you both have gotten comfortable and stopped getting to know each other. The solution: get to know who your spouse has become.
Stop assuming that because you’ve been together for so long, you know them and how they’ll react. As stated above spend quality time, dig deep, and rekindle the connection that you once had.
Poor communication is probably the biggest reason for marriage problems in the first place. Everything in life is based on clear communication. In your marriage it is key.
If you cannot communicate with your spouse, it is impossible to understand each other. If you cannot understand each other, nobody’s needs will be met.
Here comes the tough love: you just have to do it. Somebody has to ‘be first.’ If you are not communicating at all, one of you has to bring up the hard conversations, so why not you?
If you are just communicated ineffectively, at least you are still talking. But you should learn how to empathize, listen to understand and learn how to properly apologize. This will help you give your spouse what they need, and help them give you what you need.
It makes sense why boredom can be a common marriage problem. When you think about it, you are living in a routine, with the same person day and day, year after year. And of course, that could get boring.
But it doesn’t have to be that way. What so many people fail to realize is you’re not with the same person year after year. People change and evolve over time, and what you choose to do about that will have a profound effect on how bored you get in your relationship.
You need to continue to get to know your partner as you grow older together. Make room for date night, learn new hobbies together, work out together, go on walks, watch movies, read books and discuss them with each other. All of these things will help keep your marriage alive and well.
7. Being Quick Tempered
Being quick-tempered is a good way to make sure your marriage problems do not get fixed. It’s a way to make sure that you are reactive, and not understanding when you are trying to solve a problem with your spouse.
Being quick to react is detrimental to your communication skills with your partner. It usually leads to poor communication, then to no communication, and eventually resentment.
When your partner feels like they can’t talk to you because of you freak out immediately, they will stop eventually stop trying. If you are quick-tempered, think about your partner’s grievances as them telling you what they need, rather than criticisms of you.
That’s really all that is going on. Many of us are not very good at expressing our needs, and it comes off as a dig at our character. Most of the time that is not the case.
If you can learn to realize that your partner needs something, instead of being defensive right away, you will begin to see changes in your partner’s attitude as well. And your ability to communicate effectively will get better and better.
With many of the tips that you’ve read in this post, you can avoid resenting each other altogether. But it is certainly possible that you already resent your spouse for something that they did.
The best way to stop resenting your spouse is to work on yourself. It might be that your spouse did something that is difficult to forgive i.e cheating. Or it could be that maybe getting married made it so you gave up something else you loved.
Either way, you need to give yourself a reality check. Ask yourself what situation are you in now? and after that, ask yourself what you want your life to look like in the near future. Do you want your spouse to be a part of it? If you said yes, it is time to move-on.
Example: Your spouse cheated on you once 4 years ago. You still hold resentment even though he has changed his ways and proven to you that he trustworthy again. But you still hold it over his head.
If you want him to continue to be a part of your life, you have to let it go. You have to truly forgive him. For yourself as much as him. Everyone makes mistakes. Most of us make big ones at some point. True forgiveness is one of the greatest acts of love, for both yourself and your spouse.
Among the most deadly of marriage problems is selfishness. Where does selfishness in marriage stem from? Selfishness in marriage stems from a fundamental problem with the mindset.
If you feel your spouse is inordinately selfish, it probably means that your spouse has not adopted a healthy marriage mindset. Instead, you only see them caring about their own needs, wants, responsibilities, all the while letting you sit by the wayside – feeling completely ignored.
A healthy marriage mindset is the cure to selfishness as a major marriage problem, however. A healthy marriage mindset means practicing gratitude toward your spouse. It means adding positive value to your partner’s life – intentionally.
And of course, it means knowing that a little give & take will always be necessary for a happy team dynamic to set the stage for your marriage & your life.