How to Save Your Marriage From Divorce: 5 Steps to Take
Almost 40 percent of marriages end in divorce. We’ve all heard the statistics, and we seem to have accepted it as fact. You’re almost as likely to get a divorce as you are to stay married to one spouse for the rest of your life.
Common as it is, though, divorce isn’t inevitable. Starting before you ever tie the knot, there are things you can in your relationship to keep it from growing stale and unpleasant. These steps work just as well when you feel that the relationship is reaching its end, too.
If you’re feeling lost and disheartened, here’s a simple, five-step guide for how to save your marriage from divorce.
- Start with a Commitment
Every great marriage starts with a heartfelt, honest commitment. For some people, that commitment may mean the literal wedding vows, but you don’t have to wait that long or stage it so formally.
The commitment to your relationship can be as simple as a three-minute conversation. It might be an actual document that you write out like a contract. Either way, the point is that you both promise each other to work to the best of your ability to keep your marriage alive.
- Try Couples’ Therapy
Too often, people think of therapy as a last resort. This is especially true of marriage counseling.
You shouldn’t wait until your marriage feels unsalvageable to start going to therapy. Start attending sessions with your spouse when you’re both happy, mentally healthy, and ready to build something worth lasting.
Therapy isn’t one-size-fits-all, even for family and relationship counselors. You should do some digging into the variety of options available to you before settling on one.
(If you’re interested in a CBT approach to therapy, check out this marriage counselling service.)
- Give a Little Love
If you’re a naturally affectionate person, this may seem like useless advice to you. You already give your partner all the love you have, so what can you possibly add?
It may come as a surprise, but your partner may not notice or acknowledge the love you give them. That doesn’t make them selfish or insensitive, though. It may just mean that they speak and/or understand a different love language.
Everyone shows and accepts love in a different way. While you might crave compliments and praise, your partner may need dedicated quality time.
To get your marriage back on track, try showing your love in a way you aren’t used to. This doesn’t have to be sexual. For example, if you usually buy gifts, try taking your spouse to an event they’re interested in.
(Read about The 5 Love Languages to see if you and your spouse are loving each other in the most effective way.)
- Show Some Respect
All healthy relationships are built on mutual respect. If you don’t respect your partner, then you can’t expect to have a solid relationship.
Respect isn’t just an attitude, though. It’s also a behavior and a habit. It doesn’t matter if you think you’re showing your partner respect if you aren’t actually acting on it.
Respect can mean different things to different people, but there are some universal basics. First, don’t use derogatory language toward your partner. There’s a difference, for example, between saying a curse word in conversation and calling your partner that curse word.
Second, actively listen when your partner speaks. Don’t just assume that they’re wrong or out of bounds.
Finally—and most importantly—you must communicate if you want to save your marriage. Communication is the cornerstone of all of every healthy relationship, marriage most of all.
If you think that something isn’t working, talk about it. Don’t act out passive-aggressively or bottle it up and hope it disappears.
It is, perhaps, even more vital to talk about the good things, too. Compliment your partner on little things, especially ones they may think you don’t notice. Thank them or acknowledge the hard work they put into something.
How to Save Your Marriage from Divorce and Other Relationship Advice
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