When NOT to Listen To Friends

 

When you first met your spouse, there’s a good possibility that it was probably a chance encounter.  You met through a friend, or at work or at a social engagement (yes, in the grandstands at the football game counts).  You were being yourself, in mood, humor, intelligence and style.  You met, and there might have been an instant spark, or it may have taken time to develop as you were able to get to know each other.  At this point, you may have started trying to impress your future spouse, but you were still being yourself, just a brighter, shinier self.  You progressed to dating, learning all you could about this fascinating person you were beginning to fall for.
Somewhere along the line, the idea of marriage worked its way into your plans.
More than likely, unless you got married when you were 16, you were not the first person in your group of friends and associates to get married.  I’m guessing, that you can remember at least one friend or relative (and I’m guessing it was many more than just one) “pushing” you to get married.  Oh, it was a nice “push” they told you how wonderful marriage was, and how you would be so much happier then you already were.  Think back, these people that were encouraging you to get married; they were all married, right?   Think on this, we’ll get back to it in a bit.
Now, after marriage, was where your loss of self-began.  It’s a normal thing; it comes from living with, and loving another person.  It usually happens more to one of the partners more so than the other, it’s what happens when you adapt to living with another person.  The amount of change can vary, depending on your situation: are you at home all day taking care of the kids?  Is one of you still in school, or going back to school, growing in all sorts of ways?  There are many reasons for people changing, some good and some not so much.
Speaking of kids, do you remember back before you and your spouse got pregnant?  Did you have some good friends and loved ones “pushing” you to have babies?  Did they tell you how happy you would be, how much more “complete” you would feel?  Now think:  had those people all had kids of their own?  Again, save this, we’ll need to use it later.
So now, after time in the marriage has passed, and changes to each of the partners have taken place, you may find that you’re having problems.  You may even be worried that your marriage might come to an end if you can’t figure out how to save it.
We won’t go into the reasons for the problems: there could have been lies, betrayals, a growing apart…it really doesn’t matter what the reasons are, just that you recognize that there is a problem, and that you take action.  The main problem, when you boil things down, is that you, and probably both of you have changed, and not in the same direction or at the same rate. The person your spouse fell in love with, the qualities they most admired, is not there anymore.
So where do you go for advice on what to do next?
You need to go to a professional.
Here’s why.

Remember those things I asked you to remember a little bit ago?  (I told you we would be getting back to them.) Here is what was happening then, and here is what you don’t want to have happen now.  People have a need to feel that they made the right choices in their lives.  If they look and see people they love and respect making the same choices they did, it validates their choice.  Makes them feel all warm and fuzzy about what they decided to do.  When they were “pushing” you and your spouse to get married, it was because they had gotten married and needed to feel validation that they had made a good decision.  When they were “pushing” you to have a baby, it was because they had had a baby, and wanted to feel good about their choice.
Here, however, is where it is now dangerous for you and your spouse.
Some, maybe many of those same friends and loved ones have gone through a divorce.  So people being people, what do you think those people will recommend to you and your spouse if they know you are having relationship problems?  Right.  They will be now “pushing” you to get a divorce.  They will make it sound like the best choice, maybe the only choice.  You will hear nothing but negative coming out of their mouths about your relationship, and no positive reasons why you should work to fix the problems. Is divorce the best thing for you?  I hope not.  But it will make them feel better about their decision to end their own marriage.  It will validate them.
You don’t want to validate them.  You don’t want to give them the opportunity to poison what might already be a shaky relationship.  What you really want to do is to do everything in your power to validate all of the time and effort you have put in to your relationship.    You want to save your marriage, and your best bet is to go to a professional whose job it is to do just that if at all possible.

Here is a good place to start. >CLICK HERE<