Many marriages start with high hopes, passion and dreams of a fulfilling life together. But so many people are unprepared emotionally and financially for the struggles, frustrations and disappointments that inevitably follow when the honeymoon period ends. Continue reading
Recently I read a wonderful article in Boomer Plugged In, an online magazine for and about baby boomers. But this article applies to everyone, at any age. Many of the couples I see in counseling or that I meet at events and elsewhere are struggling to stay connected. Often each one feels secretly that they somehow got the raw end of the deal and that there is probably somebody out there much more suited to their emotional, physical and romantic needs. Shela Dean corroborates what I have been saying for a long time. Love heals. But we have to focus our love in the right direction.
Here is an excerpt from this article with a unique twist about marriage and divorce.
The Divorce Myth by Guest Blogger Shela Dean
The findings of a 2002 study by the Institute for American Values showed that (1) divorce does not typically make adults happier than staying in an unhappy marriage, and (b) 66% of unhappily married adults who avoided divorce were happily married five years later whether the marriage was of middling quality or had serious problems. Only 20% had divorced and happily remarried in the same time period. In short, you’re more likely to end up happily married to the spouse you have than if you divorce.
Separation … Divorce … Lawyers … Legal Battles … Financial Stress … Infidelilty … Love Gone Wrong
To Divorce or Separate: The Experts Weigh In My blog post today was inspired by this recent article from the Huffington Post with a few quotes by my colleague and friend, Dr. Adam Sheck. The article was spawned by the news that Couteney Cox and David Arquette are separating, not divorcing, after 11 years of marriage.
The public has gotten used to celebrity split ups, but usually there is so much drama, somebody doing somebody else “wrong,” somebody blatantly cheating, somebody requiring inpatient rehab for substance abuse or sexual philandering, or for being physically abusive. We tend to have difficulty dealing with the gray areas. We want it all to be put into a simple framework so that in our own lives we can know with some certainty what we would need to do in similar circumstances.
Relationships do not always fit into nice neat boxes and definite patterns. In previous generations there were some standard rules and roles for marriage. The man had the role of provider and the woman had the role of housekeeper, childbearer and homemaker. Each knew their role and lived together, often in a state of “quiet desperation.”
Times are different now. Roles are not so clearly defined. Women have found their comfort in the work place as well as at home. Women are no longer just living their lives through their children. Women are pursuing their own unique goals and dreams. And men are often enticed by blatant sexual ads, porn sites, social media connections, and invitations to join their friends at Exotic Dance Clubs
Intimate relationships usually begin with physical attraction. Then two people become sexually and emotionally connected and form a bond. When they choose to marry, they often have a deliberate purpose in mind. Perhaps they want to create a family. Perhaps they want to build a business and have another person to do it with and for. Perhaps they want to have the experience of being intimate.
But living together with another person, day in and day out, with all the details of life, can pay a toll on any intimate relationship. Dealing with financial, emotional, sexual, spiritual, mental, and creative needs and demands as well as responding to the influences of often well-meaning family, friends, colleagues and the media, can definitely influence, affect and destroy even the most intimate relationship.
Many of us were never given the tools or the training required to muster through the difficult times, to hold a vision of what we truly want in a relationship, and to love and receive love. The easy solution is to divorce and move on. Separation can be more difficult because we don’t have that sense of finality. Staying in the limbo of separation can give couples the space they need to heal their own selves and enough closeness to remain connected. The love can be rekindled over time. Or, with enough time and space, they can freely decide that the relationship is best severed.
Are you struggling with a decision: Should I stay, should I go, should we separate, or should I file for divorce now? Stop worrying and contact me now for a private, personal appointment. Let me help you think more clearly and decide what to do. http://www.DrEricaWellness.com
My colleague, friend and superb relationship coach, Colette Kenney reminded me of this poem by one of my favorite poets, Kahlil Gibran. If you follow what he is saying, it won’t really matter if you spend time apart from you partner. That could be just the “winds of heaven dancing between you.
You were born together, and together you shall be for evermore.
You shall be together when the white wings of death scatter your days.
Aye, you shall be together even in the silent memory of God.
But let there be spaces in your togetherness.
And let the winds of the heavens dance between you.
Love one another, but make not a bond of love:
Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.
Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup.
Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf.
Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone,
Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver with the same music.
Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping.
For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.
And stand together yet not too near together:
For the pillars of the temple stand apart,
And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadow.
— Khalil Gibran