How to Transform a Failing Marriage Into a Great Marriage

“Seriously, how do you transform my failing marriage into a great marriage? Is that even possible?”

Does this question sound familiar to you?

Why marriages fail is not as complicated as you might think. Even though everyone in a troubled marriage has a complex back-story as reasoning for their marriage failure, marriage failures actually all stem from the same underlying mistakes and missing ingredients. And there aren’t too many of them.

My Marriage Is Failing: How to Transform Into a Great Marriage

 

You can fairly easily figure out some of ones you have. Others are obvious only once you have more knowledge about how marriages work.

There are three underlying reasons marriages deteriorate, and these marriage killers can be broadly identified as:

  1. Over Familiarity – This is the most common killer and is always present in marriages that are not doing well. It is also found in most marriages where couples still think everything is “fine”. It is a marriage killer that starts off very tiny, but grows unnoticed. You can identify it in your marriage by how you treat each other; imagining you have the right to judge, criticize and berate each other. Learning about this killer, and what to do about it, has saved many couples from divorce. But only before there is total collapse.
  2. Poor Communication – Most people think they have a breakdown in communication when they are unheard by their spouse, or their spouse is not doing what they think they should be doing.
    They imagine their spouse is the only one who needs classes in communication, without ever looking at their own failures in this area. But marital communication is special. It’s a different kind of communication from all other forms. And it needs to be mastered by all married couples.
  3. Business deal mentality – This is a true unseen killer. It means that everything you do is because the other is going to return the favor in some way. It leads to expectations. Now, many individuals read this one and say, “yes, they have unreasonable expectations of me,” which is quite telling. But it isn’t your spouse’s expectations of you that makes you unhappy. It is your subconscious expectations of them that is what really makes you unhappy.

Admit it, you are doing any or all of these most of the times, right?

NEWS FLASH: Your marriage trouble began long before you got married.

We usually approach marriage in a strange way. We tend to not recognize marriage for what it is, and how we can purposefully influence how it will be for us.

Because there is no formal study about marriage life and marriage principles; there are generally incorrect ways we approach marriage.

  • Like a ride at an amusement park. People get on a roller coaster with an expectation of a cool ride, not having any control whatsoever. But you can, and are supposed to, control your marriage; together.
  • Like a mode of transportation. We get on board thinking the other person has the controls and power, like a hot air balloon. Being passive is fine, but it must be deliberate, not out of fear of offending, or because you think it is supposed to be that way.
  • Like a final destination. Okay, now that we had a beautiful wedding (of my dreams) we have reached our goals. Most couples put so much emphasis on the wedding day that they are squabbling by the time they are picking out the tuxedos! They have not planned their marriage at all.

Is there a marriage science?

Yes, there is!

Just like nautical schools educate individuals about seas, weather, boating rules, etc., individuals who desire marriage should also learn how to be married. Otherwise, they will invariably run into trouble the first time something unexpected comes along. Unpreparedness isn’t good.

A healthy marriage is still well within your reach.

You just need to learn how to behave and how not to behave. Because marriage is living, it can start fresh; now, and be better and better, as you do what’s needed.

At this point, you will realize that a healthy and extraordinary marriage is well within your reach. For that, you have to learn more than the basics. You need to take positive control over yourself in ways that may seem unfamiliar at first. It is worth it though.

Those who put in the time and effort find their marriage is incomparable in its benefits, and delivers more happiness than they ever imagined.

 

Transforming a Failing Marriage Into a Great Marriage

I don’t think “getting emotionally tortured” was something you looked forward to when you decided to marry your soulmate. And I’m pretty sure you didn’t consider the possibility of living in a failing marriage, or searching the internet for divorce questions when you said your vows.

I’m also sure you thought that divorce statistics pointed out problems with society, not those shared by the two of you.

So I have some questions for you, if you don’t mind:

  1. Where did you study Marriage 101?
  2. How did you do on the final?
  3. Was it relevant to what you have found in your own marriage?
  4. Oh, you mean you never took a course in marriage? I see.
  5. You thought your passion and mutual love would guide you through any conceivable rough spots?
  6. Did you feel like your communication skills were fine?
  7. Is your partner not loving and considerate?
  8. You think you can do much better once you’re free from this current mistake?

Welcome to the club of pain and suffering!

 

Your failing marriage isn’t your fault. Want to see how you can save it?

First of all, it isn’t your partner’s fault either!

Our society is so far behind in the areas of “people” study and relationships. There is a mountain of stupid issues.

You don’t have to pretend that they aren’t there if you want to have a successful marriage; and it isn’t too late to save yours! Putting all the blame on your spouse, even if they did something horrible, will spell doom.

You need to be real.

Don’t throw out a piano for one bad key!

As in anything else you want to be a success at, basically the first step is to learn the guiding principles and the second step is to learn the rules — those dos and don’ts that work with the principles.

In other words:

If you want to be a sailor, you need to learn the principles of sailing, winds, buoyancy, and so forth. If you want to be successful in marriage, you need to learn the principles of marriage’s purposes, human interactions, gender drives, and so forth.

In 99% of the failing marriages I’ve worked with, the marriages went from bad to on the road to excellent in hours.

All it took was for the couple to learn the principles and corresponding rules.

I will admit that I didn’t work with people who were highly physically abusive or psychologically damaged due to drug or alcohol abuse. But those situations are pretty rare despite what the media’s focus may have us believe.

My work with couples led to my publication of Lessons for a Happy Marriage where virtually every important question about turning a failing marriage into a great one is answered.

Because I am a mediator, I was also able to answer some divorce questions. And because of the success couples experienced, it was mostly just to satisfy their curiosity. Most people can’t believe the extent of the horrors until they go through a divorce themselves.

I would like to ask you a few questions I asked those who came to see me:

  • Is your spouse evil or just angry?
  • Would you like to leave the past behind and start with a clean slate using the required knowledge?
  • Do you want to be loved and nurtured?
  • Would you risk a few dollars and a few hours to try something that works?
  • Don’t you think your spouse is in the same pickle as you are?

I know it’s hard to see your way out of this mess but I have seen couples come out of what they saw as hopeless situations and create the marriage they dreamed of.

Don’t give up. You can do it, too!

Bear in mind that the books I published are not for real seriously eroding situations. For those who need more guided help we have online course work in the form of programs. Some people start with a book, getting comfortable with our very different approaches, then they get the marriage program. Others like what they read in the articles I wrote. Either way, get going. You do not have to suffer any longer!

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Paul Friedman
Paul Friedman
Founder & Executive Director

Paul has written two books, produced several video programs, regularly speaks on marriage, and continues to guide the growth of The Marriage Foundation to help enrich the marriages of as many couples as possible around the world.


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