The old saying of “we hurt those we love the most” is unfortunately true for most of us. We use life as an excuse. We use our jobs, not enough time in the day, or the children to explain why in marriage we can’t, we won’t, we shouldn’t. Instead of asking “What can I do for you – we ask what have you done for me lately?
We fall into patterns of nagging, being lazy, not caring, and just losing passion. I call it the sickness of marriage. We want our spouse to be a robot and agreeable to our commands. We forget our spouse is a person and a gift to keep and not break or exchange.
At the beginning, there is nothing our spouse can do wrong. We dream of our spouse, wake up thinking of our spouse, and go to bed wanting our spouse to be around. We remember special things such as our spouse liking chocolate milk and surprise them with chocolate milk on a road trip. The question is what happens to the diamonds and hearts? Why do they turn into clubs and spades?
I don’t believe anyone walks down the aisle wanting a divorce. Yet the routine of marriage can become a virus which silently attacks. Paying the bills, taking care of the home, exercising or not exercising, one’s job, hobbies, the holidays, time spent with friends can all take a toll on a marriage.
So what do we do? How can we cure the sickness? My belief is it can be as simple as 1,2,3 or A,B,C. If we follow simple childhood lessons, such as treat others how you’d like to be treated, don’t whine, realize life is short, appreciate the little things, and make friends not enemies – we have the toolkit to fight the divorce virus. From observations and life experience, it never works to get a brand new model. With a brand new model, you’ll come across the same crossroads. What does work is to put effort into your marriage. Like Mary Poppins says, with a spoon full of sugar the medicine goes down. The spoon full of sugar can be not nagging, picking up the child when it’s not your turn, leaving a text to say I love you, planning a special night, watching a show your spouse wants to watch, doing an activity together, etc. Soon enough, you’ll find the loving feeling again.
For me, when we’ve hit our crossroads I think of our history, past memories, and why we fell in love in the first place. I remember what first began to fill up our piggy bank in our relationship and what we need to fill it up again. We can always blame the other person for why the piggy bank is barren, but no one ever wins at this game. Again, the goal is prayer, some sugar, a little spice, and even though we want to hold on really tight, we need to get rid of the poison which is hurting the soul of your marriage. The question is if the person was really going to shut the door and leave, would it really matter they left the toilet seat up? What would matter is you lost someone you loved so much that at one time you said, “I Do.” So instead of saying “I Don’t” why don’t you try spending more time saying “I Do” and more time not forgetting a little spoon full of sugar.