This marriage advice from a Singapore divorcee is what you need to read today!
This Singapore divorcee has some sound advice for all married couples, and suggests these 5 simple rules to make your marriage work!
Like most women, I believe in marriage. Honestly, all I ever wanted was a marriage that would last forever. And I really thought I had it when I married him. We had dated for 5 years and were happily married for the next 3 years.
But sadly within the following 2 years, things totally fell apart. I was just blown away and simply amazed at how this short time frame had the ability to erase what we had so lovingly created together. Now that I think of it, here are some things I have learnt from my failed marriage:
#1: If you start feeling lonely in the marriage, own up and tell him, "I'm feeling lonely because...", and NOT things like "you are always… ". Seriously, he'll never know unless you take ownership of your feelings.
You see, my ex became a workaholic. When this happened, it didn’t take long until we stopped spending quality time together. He just wanted to work hard for us and thought that I was going to be okay to be left alone.
It was just a matter of time until my loneliness turned into resentment. I started to feel that he was married to his job instead of me. Again, he did have good intentions for us but just didn't ever really know how lonely I was.
#2: Communication is really key. Men are not psychics and can't read minds. Therefore, learn to speak your mind, but at the same time, protect his ego.
It took me some time to understand that it is possible to speak your mind and be understood once you start removing things such as criticism and contempt from the conversation. Prior to this knowledge, my messages weren't getting through to him. The more I tried, the more defensive he was.
The more defensive he got, the more sarcastic I became. These conversations obviously went nowhere and eventually I just stone-walled, giving the "talk to the hand" attitude. And since he kept talking to a wall, he eventually gave up.
#3: No matter how perfect you think you are for him, once the connection is lost, someone else will come along and fill up that space in his life.
Linking time to the quality of the connection in a relationship isn’t rocket science. It’s actually quite simple. Wherever you choose to spend most of your time is what you are going to be most connected with.
Even if it’s a job, a hobby or with another person. It's all about the equation of time + connection. If you are feeling lonely in your relationship and turning your attention to something else, then he’ll get lonely too from your withdrawal.
In my case, I started looking for activities to fill up my time since he was always at work. It wasn't long before I got hooked on to playing golf. I began spending a lot of time at the driving range and on the green with my friends. Soon I started embarking on golfing trips away from home. Furthermore, I started to participate in whatever social events I could find. I enjoyed all these activities because it kept me occupied.
When my ex finally had day-offs over the weekend, I was never around. Therefore, he started connecting with someone else who was there for him during my absence. I basically set up the opportunities for this to happen.
#4: Never underestimate the magic of daily "non-logistical" conversations.
I recently learnt from somewhere that these are either called "Golden Chats" or "Talk Charges" and they explained a lot about my previous situation. I thought my ex and I had great conversations until it got really overwhelming when he had no other topics to share with me other than work. Day in and day out, all he talked about was work. I started getting really disinterested.
On the other hand, my conversations with him were purely on logistical matters. I bugged him about the utility bills, the credit card bills, the traffic offence fines, his parent’s insurance policy, his car mortgage loans, and the list goes on. He was tuning out from my “nagging” while I yawned from his work related topics.
I remember loving and enjoying our previous daily half-an-hour coffee talks before we started our day. We spoke about life, goals, and the future we wanted to create. Eventually, the daily coffee discussions turned into logistical talks until I finally stopped having coffee time altogether.
#5: If you start to lose touch, get it back quickly by using the power of physical touch.
The first tell-tale sign that your marriage is falling apart is when he gradually stops his daily ritual of holding your hand, giving you that daily peck on your cheek before he leaves the house for the day, or any other ways he used to touch you on a daily basis. Humans are mirroring creatures. They mirror the people who are closest to them. So, if you withdraw, they’ll withdraw too.
In my situation with my ex, I was feeling really disconnected and my body language said it all. He just didn’t know what to do or how to handle my withdrawal, so he stayed away to play it safe, which just made things worse.
Removing daily touch is one of the quickest way to kill a marriage. Why? Because without it, you’ll no longer feel loved, wanted, or appreciated anymore.
Marriage takes continual effort to sustain. It is an ongoing external work with your spouse just as much as it is an internal work with yourself. Btw, it's much easier to just quit and hop onto the next train that goes by. But if you choose to do that, then the idea of having an everlasting marriage will just become non-existent because the same old issues will tend to resurface over and over again.
Plain and simple, hopping around doesn't last. Now that I'm attached again with my new man, there has never been a day that goes by where I don’t apply these 5 simple rules that I created for myself:
#1: Own up to your feelings, be it big or small, trivial or important. Take ownership of how you feel instead of pointing blame.
#2: When in conversation, be mindful to avoid criticism and contempt. Never sneer or roll your eyes, and remember to protect his ego.
#3: Dedicate the time and presence necessary to maintain a strong connection together.
#4: Have lots of golden chats or talk charges together. Don’t let logistical matters always be the main topic of conversation.
#5: Make efforts to keep physical touch a part of your daily lives together.
There’s no doubt. Making a habit of these 5 rules has helped changed my life for the better.They have brought a very significant amount of inner peace, balance and harmony in my life and relationship.
And since we all have good habits such as brushing our teeth every day, why not start making it a habit to implement these 5 rules into your marriage? There's no harm in trying, only benefits that will help strengthen the relationship.
Looking to strengthen your marriage? Shape up your love at the next Marriage Fitness Workshop.