All marriages go through rough patches. But while some couples patch things up and emerge stronger, others never recover. What sets apart the marriages that survive from those that don’t is how couples deal with trials — how they treat each other as they weather the storm.
Sometimes, it feels better to withdraw and stay quiet lest you ruin things with careless words. But becoming distant from your partner actually makes things worse. It’s important to keep the lines of communication open, but also be careful about what you say to each other. Here are some things you can say to your spouse when things get hard.
1. “I’m sorry”
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Apologising first doesn’t mean that you’re caving in and declaring yourself the “loser” of your argument. Asking for forgiveness — and forgiving — is a crucial step to healing. According to Family Education, the inability to apologise leads to a brittle and unstable marriage. Swallow your pride and admit when you’re wrong.
2. “I forgive you”
According to FamilyShare, by letting your partner know that you accept them in spite of them having wronged you, this shows them how important your relationship is to you. Forgiving is also good for you—harbouring bitter feelings and emotions can only lead to more negativity and hurt.
3. “I want to understand you”
We are not mind readers, but sometimes, we act like we know all of our partner’s thoughts and intentions. This could lead us to think the worst of our partner — instead of giving them the benefit of the doubt, we jump to conclusions that lead to more misunderstandings. Instead, sincerely ask your partner for his side of things, Mercury advises. If he is willing to open up, listen.
4. “You’re worth it”
When you and your spouse are going through challenges, it’s easy to make him feel like you don’t value him as much. Reassure him that no matter what happens, you’ll stay by his side and that you’re willing to work through all these hardships because you love him that much.
5. “I appreciate you”
Think about the different things you love about your spouse. During hardships, it’s easy to focus on his flaws, but this is the time when both of you should make a conscious effort to remember why you fell in love and married each other in the first place.
6. “I love you”
Don’t let a day go by without saying these three words. It can never be said enough when it is said from the heart.