Has your marriage become a merry-go-round of not-so-merry, boring times?

If this is how you see your marriage, then you have entered the realm of relationship stagnation. And once you’ve entered this territory, it can lead to a seed planted in your head that grows, branches out and becomes more challenging to pull out.

In this blog, we’ll look at where relationship stagnation takes you, and three steps to turn it around. Please keep reading…

Relationship Stagnation One-Way Ticket

There are many couples out there who, every night, sit across the dinner table from one another (if they’re still even sharing meals together) and wondering: who is this person I married?

And: Why did I marry this person?

When you first met your spouse, surely you had a good time together. It’s a rare person who will marry someone who bores them to tears or has absolutely nothing in common with the other person.

You may not share the same extracurricular activities, but maybe you share values, goals or other interests.

Yet, many marriages enter into relationship stagnation if you as a couple stop caretaking the relationship. It’s easy to slack off in the marriage-tending department—everything else seems to come first. You have to hold down a job to pay the bills, maybe you have kids to take care of, and/or sick, elderly parents who require your care and attention.

There are commitments lined up on your calendar, and you can barely get a second to yourself—let alone a spare second with your spouse.

But without taking the time to nurture your relationship with your spouse, your relationship begins to stagnate. It’s not growing: it’s wallowing.

And this relationship stagnation leads to the planting of a dangerous seed: the idea that you and your spouse are two vastly different people, and that these differences are “irreconcilable.” That phrase, ‘irreconcilable differences’, is one of the most cited reasons for a divorce. In fact, many states define it as a ‘no faultdivorce, based on ‘the breakdown of the marriage.’

How does a marriage breakdown to begin with?

Relationship stagnation is why a marriage breaks down: care and attention are everywhere but on the marriage, and your marriage gets sacrificed as a result.

Here are three steps to help you avoid a future of standing before a divorce judge and claiming irreconcilable differences:

Step #1: Go Get Your Calendar

I want you to visually see part of the reason for your relationship stagnation. What are your calendar days filled with? Doctors’ appointments, car repair appointments, meetings?

Can you locate a day on this month’s calendar in which you and your spouse have time scheduled together, as a couple?

Step #2: Make Calendar Space

Often, people try to do it all themselves, instead of reaching out and getting help. If you have kids, hire a babysitter so you can get an evening out. If you can’t afford a babysitter, work out an arrangement with a friend, family member or neighbor. You could do a swap: you watch someone else’s kids one week, the next week is your turn to get out.

Or, if you have an ailing parent and other siblings, ask for help if you’ve shouldered the burden entirely up to this point.

Step #3: Ink in a Hot Date

Think of something fun to do with your spouse—and write it in ink on the calendar. You deserve a hot date with your spouse, right? Get to know this person you married, or at least refresh your memory. People change, so what you think you know about your spouse could be vastly changed—ask questions, be interested.

And be patient. Relationship stagnation requires time and care to get things between you flowing again.

My best wishes for you as you reconcile any differences you may be feeling and end the stagnation between you and your spouse.

Is your relationship boring?                                               

If so, what do you think happened? When did it take a U-turn?

Please share your ideas and personal experiences on this topic with other members of the community.

Wishing you hope and healing for your marriage,

Stephanie Anderson

Editor-in-Chief

Marriage Sherpa

 

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