Have you “hit the wall” in your marriage yet? It happens to just about every married couple at some point. Based on my conversations with women, I’d say it’s most common someplace between 8-15 years. For me it was in my second marriage.
When Joseph and I were in our first month of counselling, there was a lot of anger, tension, and hurt. We had 2½ years left in that marriage and I didn’t know if we could fix the problem. We tried and tried, but didn’t. I was clear about not wanting to have another marriage unless we did. Counseling seemed like the last chance.
But it was hard…really hard. We both had to look at stuff about ourselves we didn’t want to see.
In those days, much as it is still today, Joseph left for work early. He was up and out the door before I was awake. So we didn’t talk and, in those days, that was probably good for us.
One morning, after a particularly difficult counseling session the night before, I got up to get ready for work. One of my “things” is having a fresh washcloth each morning. The cloths were stored in the linen closet in the hallway.
That morning, before going to the linen closet, I went to the bathroom first. There I found a fresh washcloth waiting for me. I was surprised. Joseph never did that before – he just always got his own and I got mine. But that day was different. Though I noticed, I shrugged it off as a quirk.
The next day it was the same thing…and the next day…and the next. Every morning when I saw that fresh washcloth, I knew Joseph thought about me that morning, in a nice way. I realized it was Joseph’s way of telling me that he still loved me and wanted to work things out. I started to see the washcloth as a sign that we might be able to find a way together. In the midst of a very difficult time in our relationship, when our verbal communication was minimal, that fresh washcloth was a lifeline.
Every Five-Year Marriage™ will hit a wall. It’s important to recognize what agreements you have that created the challenge. It’s equally important notice the signs that keep you going.
Curious about what a Five-Year Marriage™ is? Start with this website and then read the book, available in hard copy and digital: The Five-Year Marriage: Shifting the Marriage Paradigm
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