Hey You! How is it going?
Yesterday, we dealt with some of the things newlyweds tend to go through when starting their lives together. Today I want to talk to you about dealing with a marriage that’s in crisis. Nobody intends to reach this point in marriage where you can barely stand to be in the same room with each other. However, the reality is it happens more often than not. So how do you recover from this point in marriage? How do you repair brokenness? Is it too late? You’re the only one that can answer these questions. I want to present a few questions today that will help you as you start to explore the next steps for your relationship.
How bad is it? Are you safe? Are you being verbally or physically abused? Are there children involved? Are the children safe? These questions are not just for women, because there are dangerous women out there as well. There is a stigma that only women are victims of domestic violence; however, this is a myth.
Consider your safety first before reading anything else. You are the only person who can provide an honest answer to these questions. Are you mentally exhausted? Have you reached a point where you can’t focus on other things? Have issues with your marriage begun to spill over into other areas of your life? Mental exhaustion is dangerous! It’s almost worse than physical exhaustion, because there is a thin line between sanity and insanity. Mental exhaustion can lead to a psychotic break if things continue for an extended period of time without being addressed. If you fit into any of these categories, the first thing you need to do is seek the help of someone nearby who can guide you to resources.
Are both parties willing to compromise? Compromising for the kids can be destructive. Hear me out! I get that you might not want to break up the family, but is it really beneficial for a 10-year-old to witness constant arguing, fighting, etc.? Here is a secret – unfortunately even if you’re not the “guilty/bad” parent, your relationship with your child could still be negatively impacted. I have seen it many times when the abused parent is the target by not only the spouse, but the children as well. The longer the child stays in this environment, the more destructive patterns of behavior they learn. There are plenty of people where co-parenting was a much better choice than staying in a destructive relationship “for the kids.” If you are both willing to compromise and decide you want to move forward – awesome! The next step is for you!
There is nothing wrong with counseling! Going to counseling doesn’t mean you’re crazy, but refusing counseling might make you crazy. The stigma attached to counseling is slowly dissolving. More and are people are starting to see counseling as a path to recovery and healing. If you and your spouse have agreed to work on the marriage and re-commit yourselves, then counseling would be my first recommendation. I can give you tips via the internet, but talking to a professional who can work through issues with you personally would benefit you so much more.
If you’ve made it to the end of this post, you have completed step one for a marriage in crisis: admitting there is a problem. If you’re ready to move onto step two and you need help, I would be happy to work with you to help you find someone who is a good fit. If you live in Illinois, you might want to check out tomorrow’s post. We will be sitting down Mr. Andy Young, LCPC, CADC, CPAIP who specializes in working with couple’s in conflict.
Tomorrow’s post: Ask a Professional – Meet Andy Young!
Hey You! How is it going?