A HAPPY RELATIONSHIP IS IMPOSSIBLE WITHOUT TRUST AND COMMITMENT
Love is like Legos. In each passing moment, we are either building a wall between ourselves and our lover or a bridge into each other’s heart.
Each Lego is an interaction between romantic partners. The deciding factor of whether we open or protect our hearts is the quality of trust.
“Without trust, there can be no meaningful connection.” – Brene Brown
Often trust is seen as a big word. A massive Lego that connects two people, allowing them to connect easily. But this is false.
Trust is built brick by brick, an accumulation of small choices made every day.
THE AFFAIR WARNING SIGN YOU SHOULD NEVER IGNORE
The question is not “What kind of person is likely to have an affair?” but rather “What kind of relationship is likely to have one?”
Affairs are far more common that most people realize and they happen for a wide variety of reasons. In over two decades of working with couples I’ve seen practically every kind of person and every kind of personality succumb to an affair, many of which I would never have anticipated would do so. What opened the door to the affair in the majority of these situations is not the character of the people involved but two other factors: Circumstance and Opportunity.
Our relationships are not static entities. Rather, the quality and strength of our bonds wax and wane naturally in response to the events, demands and circumstances of our lives. Anyone in a long-term partnership has gone through times in which they’ve felt angry and distant from their partners as well as times in which they’ve felt incredibly close and loving.
5 RELATIONSHIP RED FLAGS YOU SHOULD NEVER IGNORE
Paying attention is half the battle but you both need to do it.
I knew that my marriage was floundering but I didn’t know how to fix it. Fifteen years in, enough of what we’d once had was so eroded that there wasn’t any real way of retrieving it. I think both of us were just sick and tired of the arguing, the relationship, and each other.
Some years ago, a wise
therapist named Susan whose practice was mainly devoted to couples’ counseling
confided a sad truth as we talked about whether joint therapy
with my then-husband would work. She shook her head and then continued: “The reality is that it’s relatively rare that the counseling works because people wait too long. Therapy is usually seen as a last-ditch effort to salvage the marriage, and it’s not always agreed to in good faith
either. A husband or wife may simply accede because he or she wants to be seen as ‘having tried everything.’ By the time they book an appointment with me, the marriage has been failing for years. And it’s just too late. For those couples, my office is just a stop and a parking lot away from the divorce
DEAR HUSBAND: I’M NOT THE PERSON YOU MARRIED
I am sorry.
I’m sorry that you’ve been neglected for the last four-and-a-half years. I’m sorry that your needs are secondary. I assure you, you are still one of my top priorities – you just aren’t on the top of the list anymore.
I know that you have needs, wants, dreams, and desires. When I tell you that I want to be the one you lean on, I mean it. I know you are tired of my excuses of being tired, having a headache, or am already snoring when you snuggle up next to me. Trust me, I wish I had the energy I had five years ago. Hell, I wish I had the energy I had two weeks ago when I washed, folded, and actually put away all 10 loads of laundry. Of course, you didn’t see that because I was letting you get some much needed sleep.
THE 3 PHASES OF LOVE
What do you do if you love your partner, but you are no longer in love with your partner? Does the feeling of love transform or change over time?
In my book Principia Amoris: The New Science of Love, I explain the three natural phases of love. While being in love is a very complex experience, my research has identified choice points when love may either progress to a deeper place, or deteriorate.
Phase 1: Falling in Love – Limerence
In 1979, Dorothy Tennov coined the term “limerence” for the first stage of love, characterized by physical symptoms (flushing, trembling, palpitations), excitement, intrusive thinking, obsession, fantasy, sexual excitement, and the fear of rejection.
21 ROMANTIC TEXTS THAT’LL MAKE YOUR HUSBAND CRAZY FOR YOU
What man wouldn’t love one of these?
Showing love to your husband doesn’t have to be expensive or extravagant. A simple text can go a long way.
Words of love and affirmation are vital to a healthy relationship. Your husband wants to know that he is an important part of your life. (And he definitely doesn’t mind getting a flirty, romantic message at work to help him through the day.)
THE DEATH OF LOVE ISN’T NATURAL: THE 7 STEPS TO SEPARATION
“Love never dies a natural death. It dies because we don’t know how to replenish its source, it dies of blindness and errors and betrayals. It dies of illness and wounds, it dies of weariness, of witherings, or tarnishings, but never a natural death.” – Anais Nin
Marriages rarely end overnight. They tend to unravel over time, in ways that are now fairly predictable thanks to research by Dr. John Gottman. In 1986 Dr. Gottman and his colleagues built a Love Lab to learn the secrets of lasting love and understand why love dies.
By studying couples for over 40 years, Dr. Gottman could predict with a 90% accuracy which marriage would fail, and which would succeed. These are the factors he found most often contribute to the dissolution of a marriage:
NEGATIVE EMOTIONS OFFER OPPORTUNITIES FOR CONNECTION
When I work with couples, it’s not uncommon for one partner to say, “I can’t handle my partner’s anger,” or “Her crying overwhelms me, I don’t know what to do.”
The other partner expresses, “He never listens to me,” or “She never cares about my life.”
The problem here is that an emotionally dismissive response blocks emotional connection, and over time, erodes trust, the foundation of a happy and positive relationship.
AFTER CHEATING: RESTORING RELATIONSHIP TRUST
After so many lies and secrets, can trust ever be restored?
How do you define infidelity? Does looking at porn count as cheating? What about webcam sex? If you play around on hookup apps but never actually hook up in person, are you cheating? If you’re chatting with an old flame on social media, is that a form of infidelity? What about playing virtual-reality sex games?
Do you think that you and your partner might have different ideas about the behaviors that do and don’t qualify as infidelity? With all of the uncertainty about what does and does not qualify as cheating, it’s high time we had a universal, digital-era definition. And here it is, as it appears in my book, Out of the Doghouse: A Step-by-Step Relationship-Saving Guide for Men Caught Cheating: