Advertising
Advertising

Why You Should Never Get Into Marriage Just Because You Feel Stuck

Why You Should Never Get Into Marriage Just Because You Feel Stuck

For many couples, they reach a point in their relationship when things seem to be ending and beginning all at the same time. It may seem like they’re turning a corner and embarking on a new phase of the relationship. It may be that they have been together for a long time and things have been going well, but something feels like it should change.

It’s only natural that two individuals who are in an intimate relationship together, both with their own needs and aspirations, make decisions in life that will affect their partner. Everyone is on their own journey, but when you are in a committed relationship, that journey starts to intersect and life choices are made in synchronicity with that significant other.

Advertising

Often, the pressure to define a relationship or reach particular milestones comes from outside the relationship. The two people in the relationship are often happy letting their union evolve naturally. Whether that means traveling, moving in together, buying property, or starting a family, these things often unfold organically between a couple who are truly in love. For some, marriage seems like the logical next step, especially when people start asking about it.

Pressure from family

Marriage is a tradition. The expectation to settle down with a partner often comes from both parties’ immediate families; namely, their parents. It’s only natural that parents want to see their children happy and secure, particularly in their intimate relationships, but the reality is that security and happiness isn’t the automatic result of getting married. Sometimes, it’s quite the contrary. The decision to get married is nobody’s business but the people in the relationship.

Advertising

Financial security

When a couple has been together for some time, they share their entire lives. Eventually cohabiting becomes inevitable and these days couples live together whether or not marriage is in the cards. The easiest thing to do sometimes is to combine assets and income in order for both parties to benefit and to create a financially secure household — but this isn’t necessary. Two financially independent and self reliant individuals can still support one another while at the same time maintaining some semblance of autonomy over their own earnings and their financial future. Marriage doesn’t always provide financial security. In fact, it can put a drain on finances. Getting married is expensive, and putting your money together doesn’t work for everyone.

Assurance of commitment

Mainstream ideas and commercial coercion can force us to feel that unless we participate in the institution of marriage, we are somehow not committed in our relationships or our union does not have legitimacy. Sometimes, couples who are perhaps struggling to feel satisfied or are feeling like they are stuck in a rut in their relationship may be persuaded to believe that marriage will solve all their problems. Unfortunately, this is far from true.

Advertising

If there are issues with a partner, if boredom has set in, if a couple is no longer excited to be together, if they are constantly arguing and rarely see eye to eye, if their life decisions seem to be pulling them in different directions, embarking on marriage is not going to repair the underlying issues. You don’t need a ring on your finger and a big party to cement the loyalty and devotion of another person. No amount of ceremony and spectacle will compensate for the hard work, the desire, and the compatibility and connection between two people. If you get married to fix your problems, you are just buying a very expensive bandaid.

Marriage as a milestone

The inevitability of marriage is something that has gained momentum in recent times and is something different to what it was traditionally.

Advertising

Traditionally, marriage was a contract between a man and a father — that’s right! It was a sale, an agreement between two families. In some places, not much has changed. A man handed over his daughter to another man as though it was a commercial transaction.

These days, people balk at that idea because women certainly don’t want to view themselves as a commodity. Marriage instead is viewed as a rite of passage. A desired milestone that everyone grows up to reach. A big party with lots of lovely photos and champagne and cake. Marriage is marketed as something every little girl and every woman desires because it’s the opportunity to be queen for a day. This sometimes clouds the reality of what marriage means and what it requires for it to be successful. The truth is marriage is somewhat archaic and unnecessary. For two people to live happily ever after, all that is necessary is for those people to choose to be together.

Featured photo credit: themes.com via 7-themes.com

More by this author

Diane Koopman

Writer, Author, Novelist, Self-Publisher

How Mental Fatigue Eats You Slowly (And Ways to Regain Mental Energy) 10 Scientifically Proven Health Benefits of Taking a Bath 20 Dalai Lama Quotes To Change The Way You Think Small Things Parents Can Do to Effectively Reduce Sibling Jealousy Learning These 10 Tricks Can Help You Overcome Frustration in Communication

Trending in Communication

1 Signs Of Low Self-Esteem And The Root Causes You Might Not Know 2 How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship 3 How to Live in the Moment and Stop Worrying About the Past or Future 4 19 Golden Pieces of Relationship Advice From the Experts 5 This Is What Happens When You Move Out Of the Comfort Zone

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on May 21, 2019

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

For all our social media bravado, we live in a society where communication is seen less as an art, and more as a perfunctory exercise. We spend so much time with people, yet we struggle with how to meaningfully communicate.

If you believe you have mastered effective communication, scan the list below and see whether you can see yourself in any of the examples:

Example 1

You are uncomfortable with a person’s actions or comments, and rather than telling the individual immediately, you sidestep the issue and attempt to move on as though the offending behavior or comment never happened.

You move on with the relationship and develop a pattern of not addressing challenging situations. Before long, the person with whom you are in relationship will say or do something that pushes you over the top and predictably, you explode or withdraw completely from the relationship.

In this example, hard-to-speak truths become never- expressed truths that turn into resentment and anger.

Example 2

You communicate from the head and without emotion. While what you communicate makes perfect sense to you, it comes across as cold because it lacks emotion.

People do not understand what motivates you to say what you say, and without sharing your feelings and emotions, others experience you as rude, cold or aggressive.

You will know this is a problem if people shy away from you, ignore your contributions in meetings or tell you your words hurt. You can also know you struggle in this area if you find yourself constantly apologizing for things you have said.

Example 3

You have an issue with one person, but you communicate your problem to an entirely different person.

Advertising

The person in whom you confide lacks the authority to resolve the matter troubling you, and while you have vented and expressed frustration, the underlying challenge is unresolved.

Example 4

You grew up in a family with destructive communication habits and those habits play out in your current relationships.

Because you have never stopped to ask why you communicate the way you do and whether your communication style still works, you may lack understanding of how your words impact others and how to implement positive change.

If you find yourself in any of the situations described above, this article is for you.

Communication can build or decimate worlds and it is important we get it right. Regardless of your professional aspirations or personal goals, you can improve your communication skills if you:

  • Understand your own communication style
  • Tailor your style depending on the needs of the audience
  • Communicate with precision and care
  • Be mindful of your delivery, timing and messenger

1. Understand Your Communication Style

To communicate effectively, you must understand the communication legacy passed down from our parents, grandparents or caregivers. Each of us grew up with spoken and unspoken rules about communication.

In some families, direct communication is practiced and honored. In other families, family members are encouraged to shy away from difficult conversations. Some families appreciate open and frank dialogue and others do not. Other families practice silence about substantive matters, that is, they seldom or rarely broach difficult conversations at all.

Before you can appreciate the nuance required in communication, it helps to know the familial patterns you grew up with.

2. Learn Others Communication Styles

Communicating effectively requires you to take a step back, assess the intended recipient of your communication and think through how the individual prefers to be communicated with. Once you know this, you can tailor your message in a way that increases the likelihood of being heard. This also prevents you from assuming the way you communicate with one group is appropriate or right for all groups or people.

Advertising

If you are unsure how to determine the styles of the groups or persons with whom you are interacting, you can always ask them:

“How do you prefer to receive information?”

This approach requires listening, both to what the individuals say as well as what is unspoken. Virgin Group CEO Richard Branson noted that the best communicators are also great listeners.

To communicate effectively from relationship to relationship and situation to situation, you must understand the communication needs of others.

3. Exercise Precision and Care

A recent engagement underscored for me the importance of exercising care when communicating.

On a recent trip to Ohio, I decided to meet up with an old friend to go for a walk. As we strolled through the soccer park, my friend gently announced that he had something to talk about, he was upset with me. His introduction to the problem allowed me to mentally shift gears and prepare for the conversation.

Shortly after introducing the shift in conversation, my friend asked me why I didn’t invite him to the launch party for my business. He lives in Ohio and I live in the D.C. area.

I explained that the event snuck up on me, and I only started planning the invite list three weeks before the event. Due to the last-minute nature of the gathering, I opted to invite people in the DMV area versus my friends from outside the area – I didn’t want to be disrespectful by asking them to travel on such short notice.

I also noted that I didn’t want to be disappointed if he and others declined to come to the event. So I played it safe in terms of inviting people who were local.

Advertising

In the moment, I felt the conversation went very well. I also checked in with my friend a few days after our walk, affirmed my appreciation for his willingness to communicate his upset and our ability to work through it.

The way this conversation unfolded exemplified effective communication. My friend approached me with grace and vulnerability. He approached me with a level of curiosity that didn’t put me on my heels — I was able to really listen to what he was saying, apologize for how my decision impacted him and vow that going forward, I would always ask rather than making decisions for him and others.

Our relationship is intact, and I now have information that will help me become a better friend to him and others.

4. Be Mindful of Delivery, Timing and Messenger

Communicating effectively also requires thinking through the delivery of the message one intends to communicate as well as the appropriate time for the discussion.

In an Entrepreneur.com column, VIP Contributor Deep Patel, noted that persons interested in communicating well need to master the art of timing. Patel noted,[1]

“Great comedians, like all great communicators, are able to feel out their audience to determine when to move on to a new topic or when to reiterate an idea.”

Communicating effectively also requires thoughtfulness about the messenger. A person prone to dramatic, angry outbursts should never be called upon to deliver constructive feedback, especially to people whom they do not know. The immediate aftermath of a mass shooting is not the ideal time to talk about the importance of the Second Amendment rights.

Like everyone else, I must work to ensure my communication is layered with precision and care.

It requires precision because words must be carefully tailored to the person with whom you are speaking.

Advertising

It requires intentionality because before one communicates, one should think about the audience and what the audience needs in order to hear your message the way you intended it to be communicated.

It requires active listening which is about hearing verbal and nonverbal messages.

Even though we may be right in what we say, how we say it could derail the impact of the message and the other parties’ ability to hear the message.

Communicating with care is also about saying things that the people in our life need to hear and doing so with love.

The Bottom Line

When I left the meeting with my dear friend, I wondered if I was replicating or modeling this level of openness and transparency in the rest of my relationships.

I was intrigued and appreciative. He’d clearly thought about what he wanted to say to me, picked the appropriate time to share his feedback and then delivered it with care. He hit the ball out of the park and I’m hopeful we all do the same.

More Articles About Effective Communication

Featured photo credit: Kenan Buhic via unsplash.com

Reference

Read Next