7 Common Problems That Cause Divorce
Marriage is hard and feels shaky sometimes. Erma Bombeck said, “Marriage has no guarantees. If that’s what you’re looking for, go live with a car battery.”
There are so many challenges facing marriages today. And although each relationship has its own trials and stresses, certain challenges are common to most couples; they must figure out how to survive them to be happy and keep growing.
Here are seven of the most common ones:
The person you marry will change through the years as they go through different life stages; it can be a big challenge for the marriage.
Think about it. As newlyweds, everything is new and exciting! And it doesn’t take long for changes to start rolling in. Living arrangements change, along with jobs and children entering the picture, health, bills, and retirement planning.
It’s one change after another, which can be tough for someone looking for certainty and stability.
It’s not always smooth sailing; there will be choppy waters.
Couples who are committed to being happily married (instead of just married) know that bad times will pass and good times will return. They expect change and are flexible in how they navigate it.
Most couples who get married look forward to starting a family. But, having children creates its own unique set of challenges,
Having kids is a major change that causes a massive shift in the relationship dynamics as a two-person family becomes a three-person family.
One of the biggest challenges kids bring, besides the added financial responsibilities, is how you and your spouse will keep each other as one of your top priorities and not lose yourselves in parenting.
Marriage is about learning how to care about someone other than yourself.
Marriage isn’t 50/50; it’s 100/100. The mindset of a happy marriage is finding ways to serve your spouse every day instead of seeking what they can do for you.
Selflessness is a pillar of a happy marriage.
Control, manipulation, coercion, and selfishness erode the relationship and must go.
For some people, though, putting their focus on someone other than themselves is an enormous test.
We all know how money problems are a huge source of marital conflict.
Being married can make things easier financially than being alone because you share expenses. But with marriage comes much bigger expenses, like a mortgage for a bigger home as your family grows, tuition costs for the kids, transportation, medical bills, etc.
How a couple copes with money and financial hardship created by limited funds is one of the biggest and most common marital problems couples will face.
Next to money, sex is another common marriage problem.
People’s needs for physical intimacy vary. So it’s important to be open about what you want sexually and discuss your needs and desires honestly. Not talking about sex creates problems that don’t quickly resolve on their own.
It’s easy to feel rejected and unwanted when one spouse wants sex, and the other doesn’t. And then it’s easy to start wondering and make assumptions when they don’t want it, like are they involved with someone else?
Couples having problems in the bedroom should see a marriage counselor sooner rather than later to avoid creating a sexless marriage.
6. Religious and Cultural Differences
Sex, money, and religion are top sources of marriage problems. How will you and your spouse practice your faith? Will you attend the same faith community or different ones?
And what about cultural differences? How will you accommodate them within the marriage to ensure both of you feel appreciated and celebrated?
Discussing these matters as soon as possible is important to avoid creating divisiveness and causing insurmountable problems.
When you marry your partner, you marry their family too. It isn’t always easy fitting into your spouse’s family, especially if you come from a very different kind of home and family.
Remember that you and your spouse come first; make each other your top priorities.
Set boundaries that protect your marriage, like keeping private matters private and never bad-mouthing the other to get sympathy from your respective families.
And compromise. Even when you don’t particularly enjoy a certain tradition or characteristic of your spouse’s family, be flexible because you enjoy seeing your spouse happy and having fun with their family. A little bit of healthy compromise never hurt anyone.
Open, honest, and transparent communication is essential for a happy marriage, especially when dealing with these seven common marital challenges.
Avoiding them and settling for less than you deserve isn’t the answer.
Discussing them won’t be easy and might create more conflict at first, but it’s the only way of navigating the storm and making it to the other side. The alternative (which isn’t an alternative) is to just “put up with it” and live with a gloomy cloud of unhappiness hanging over your marriage.
Work with your spouse to face these common marriage challenges to create a happy marriage you can enjoy for the rest of your life.
“Marriage is meant to keep people together, not just when things are good, but particularly when they are not. That’s why we take marriage vows, not wishes,” Ngina Otiende.