We come from a divorced country. See?
|Marriage||Divorce statistics (in percent)|
|First Marriage||45% to 50% marriages end in divorce|
|Second Marriage||60% to 67% marriages end in divorce|
|Third Marriage||70% to 73% marriages end in divorce|
Most divorces occur between 3-7 years of marriage and then again at 20-25 years of marriage.
Those are the hardest chunks of time in a marriage. I believe it's because of our mindset. Everything around us says date around then break up if it doesn't work out. That's practicing divorce! Go for as long as you feel like you can, then when it gets tough, take care of Number 1. Of course, sometimes it's not resolvable, but THAT'S WHERE THE PROBLEM IS!
It should always be resolvable as long as both parties entered into the marriage with the same philosophy: "I'm going to die with this person. Divorce is not an option. I am going to do everything I can to make him/her feel loved for the rest of our lives."
Most people go into marriage thinking "This person completes me, loves me, and makes me happy." Me. Me me me me me! If you go into it thinking, "What can this person do for me, to make me happy," then you're headed for a big fat fail. No one will ever live up to that standard.
They will never be able to make you happy enough. They will never complete you.
|me me me me me me|
But what if we switch that around? Instead of me me me, we go into it thinking, "How can I make my husband/wife's life better? What can I do to make them happy and put them first?"
Ooh, what do you think of that?
"But wait... If I do that, then how are MY needs going to get met? If I'm constantly thinking about him/her, when do I have time for myself?"
That's the beauty of this arrangement. You have to trust the other person to do that for you. Repeat.
YOU HAVE TO TRUST the other person to do that for you.
Your husband/wife takes care of your needs. His/her number one priority is making sure you feel safe and loved and respected. And your number one priority is the same - but for him/her.
But this is where it gets tricky:
People are selfish.
Eventually the paradigm will switch and both of you will be sitting on the couch, realizing how unloved and unappreciated you feel. If you're like most couples, you'll just learn to take care of yourself again and eventually drift so far apart you
A) Seek someone else to meet your needs then get divorced because of infidelity
or B)Get divorced [without infidelity] citing irreconcilable differences and hope the next person you hook up with will fill those gaps.
If you're on the other end of the statistic, you'll realize this relationship takes work. You can't go on autopilot because your pilot is selfish! So you sack up and apologize for not meeting your husband/wife's needs. Because it is your fault. It's your fault for not communicating, not taking care of him/her, and being your own back-up because you don't trust him/her to take care of you. And then he/she will apologize for doing the same thing to you.
And here's the MOST IMPORTANT part of this:
Then you commit to to trusting each other to meet each other's needs, selflessly.
Because he/she DOES love you. He/she DOES want to see you happy; there's a sense of accomplishment in seeing someone's joy that you created. Especially in marriage. That's what he/she committed to in the beginning of this deal. If you don't honestly believe that he/she loves you anymore or wants to do right by you, then I strongly suggest you get counseling. But if you still believe it, then you can do this yourselves. You have to do this yourselves. For the sake of the rest of your lives. It just requires trust. Unadulaterated* Unwavering* Trust*
- pure: not mixed or diluted with something else
- absolute: free from any element that would spoil or detract from it)
- steady and firm in purpose: firm in view or purpose and unable to be swayed or diverted from it)
1. reliance: confidence in and reliance on good qualities, especially fairness, truth, honor, or ability
2. position of obligation: the position of somebody who is expected by others to behave responsibly or honorably
3. hope for future: hopeful reliance on what will happen in the future
4. care: responsibility for taking good care of somebody or something
Be encouraged, stick with it. If you're dating someone, be honest with yourself - if there's any inkling in the back of your mind that this person isn't perfect for you, move on. Be picky about who you get into relationships with (and keep it in your pants once you get there).
Make a wise, thoughtful decison about who you choose to marry. Ask your family, your pastors, your friends for advice. Then once you make that decision, make it firmly. Go to pre-marital counseling. Equip yourselves with the tools to succeed and go against the statistics. It's a two-way street... both parties must be just as enthusiastic about working at this to make it work.
Because once you're in it, you're in it till you die. Divorce is NOT an option.