Have you wondered what it means to have a good marriage?
There are entire industries built around creating the perfect wedding. Look no further than the endless racks of magazines on a newsstand. Flash forward a few years and you will find entire industries built around understanding what is wrong with your relationship. Look no further than the self-help section of the book store. Or most of my articles.
But I am in my 40’s. When I got married, I followed the script. Dated for two years, got engaged, dutifully planned the perfect wedding for our families. …
People use terms like “toxic” and “narcissist” and “gaslighting” these days. Practically every article you read refers to relationship terms that aren’t well defined.
You can google for days searching signs of a bad relationship. You may fit a few of the criteria. And then you rationalize that it might be ok because you don’t fit them all. I know, because I do it too.
If you find yourself asking any question along the lines of is my relationship toxic? then you are experiencing a pretty bad situation.
The problem is, when you find yourself in a bad situation, it is nearly impossible to see clearly. It isn’t just that your partner is toxic, it is that the entire environment in which you exist has become toxic. It affects your ability to think clearly, it affects your self-esteem and your life begins to shrink as you hide the truth from friends and family out of sheer embarrassment over the truth of your relationship. …
When asked if it is good or bad for a couple to have a fight, relationship expert Esther Perel becomes animated her answer. “It’s a must. It’s obligatory. But the question is not so much the fighting, the question is really the repair.”
How we fight, what we actually fight about and how we repair the relationship are key indicators of how a couple is actually connecting. While having disagreements within any relationship is normal, there are unhealthy behaviors that can predict the breakdown of a partnership.
It is easy to be your best self on the good days…but how do you behave when things get hard? Your character is revealed in the most challenging moments, not the best. …