What makes a good marriage?
Sometimes individuals and couples can feel unhappy and unfulfilled in their marriages/ relationships and be unsure as to what exactly is wrong. Often they place the blame on themselves. I am a horrible husband/wife/partner or the blame is placed with your significant other. If only they would listen. I don’t feel my needs are being met. Something is missing. I am unhappy and I’m not sure why. Emotional abandonment is a very real thing. Have you ever spent time in your home with your partner and felt completely alone? Gone are the days that you couldn’t wait to share ideas. Gone are the days when you couldn’t get close enough. You sat on the same furniture, watched a movie together, shared passions for life. Now you’ve each become an Island. Yes you still love one another. You still do basic care for one another much in the same way you love a parent, Sibling, or friend.
There are many factors that contribute to a satisfying marriage/relationship such as;
Love, Commitment, Trust, Time, Attention, Good Communication including Listening to hear not to react. Intimacy, ensuring your partner that they are desired, wanted and loved.
I spent 7 years in a sexless marriage. Many of you are thinking what? How does that even happen? I’m still trying to figure that out.
I was in a very dark and desperate place when I met him. I was all over the place. He became, somehow, the voice of reason. The soft shoulder to cry on. He used the Bible and religion to his advantage…his own interpretation of scripture. How could I question this man that made good points scripturally based when I was so lost and in my darkness?
He had grown up very poor. The son of a Church of Christ preacher. He had seemingly unending knowledge of scripture.
He also had more reasons than Kelloggs got cornflakes for denying intimacy. At first, that was fine with me. Even for a few years that was fine for me, because I was working through things, my battered mind was healing slowly. I was on autopilot with work, home, and health. I had two very good jobs during this marriage. Highly paid jobs. He was disabled. So he did not work. He cared for his 94 year old father in the home and he had experienced the sudden death of his wife, whose ghost was very much present in the home. In many ways I felt sorry for him. In many ways I was manipulated by him, because of my empathy. Add into this mix that I lost a longtime friend very suddenly and tragically. I had a brain tumor recurrence. I watched cancer take a very beloved parent while caring for him. I lost everything within a short amount of time. My job, my health, myself, my self esteem, my loved ones. I had constant rejection from him. And excuses. He blew through my earnings. But, I allowed all of this to happen. Why? Because I was vulnerable. Extremely so. Easy pickings.
When you are the one that does all the compromising to a great deficit to yourself it’s only given that resentment rises. It may take time but eventually it happens. At first you feel your the bigger person. When intimacy is denied to you it chips away a big part of you. Self esteem is huge. This is especially true because most of us need that intimate connection with the one we love. Be it handholding, kissing, affection or sex. We need it as much as the air we breathe.
Where trouble comes in “normal healthy” relationships is when one decides its no longer important. They take the control and set the tone. “Oh you should be past all that by now.” ” Could you please “grow up” we aren’t teenagers any more.” ” I just don’t feel it anymore.” This places the blame unfairly on the person desiring intimacy, somehow you are weak for having normal healthy desires…it’s emotionally wrecking and just not fair to place that load on someone. When one person gets overwhelmed and steps outside to get what they need, society is quick to judge that person as the “bad guy” and their spouse as the victim. When the fact of the matter is the “victim” left the relationship long ago. When they decided that their needs or lack of were more important than yours and since in their mind they are the one in control of the relationship they are the ones that are right.
In closing, and I’ve only just scratched the surface here….
It is ok to have wants and needs.
If you have had open and honest discussions with your significant other and your left feeling the issue is your fault alone, when clearly you cannot fix it alone.
Do some self examination to figure out why you believe you are not worth more.
And keep Reaching For Daylight