Should you stay when a relationship gets hard?

There is a great deal of value in pushing through difficult times in a relationship. If we look at the process of living life in general. You would agree that a life faced with challenges and pain, is still a life worth living. And correspondingly a relationship going through crisis can still be a relationship worth having. A decision to stay in a relationship should be made based on the level of commitment each person has for the other. Additionally, each individual should evaluate and make sure they are not sacrificing their own well-being by continuing their relationship. Is this relationship causing you to change your values? Is It putting your safety at risk? If the answer to these questions is no then it may be worth taking action to improve and save your relationship.

Long term relationships can experience periods of low satisfaction, low intimacy and high conflict. Yes, there are some relationships that may thrive with out a lot of conflict or pain. But most of us who stay in long term relationships will experience challenges. In fact, we should expect to be faced with this at some point. It is recommended that couples prepare themselves for these times by building up their resources and coping skills. It is helpful to acquire the skills of acceptance and forgiveness to successfully survive distress in a relationship. Acceptance means being able to face reality and letting go of the past through forgiveness. Acceptance is the ability to recover quickly from circumstances so that a couple can proceed to identifying solutions.

Identify the problem! Many couples struggle to solve problems creating contempt and resentment in their relationship. Resentment prevents people in a relationship from validating and comforting each other creating an atmosphere that can be described as a loveless marriage. These couples must learn to communicate their hurt, ask for what they need and reconnect to their overall vision. Additionally it is important that you invest your time into keeping your relationship strong before it gets bad. Participating in worships or retreats and reading self help books can keep you prepared for these challenges. I’ve included several of my favorite books below. Lastly, for couples who feel like they are in a loveless marriage, couples counseling can be a game changer for their relationship. Marriage counseling is also appropriate for your marriage to address issues before you are feeling hopeless. You don’t have to be on the brink of getting divorced. Participating in couples counseling can teach you additional skills to feel stronger levels of love for one another and the ability to conquer challenges more successfully.

Recommended Marriage Books: