10 Ways to Survive (and Thrive) in a Difficult Marriage

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First, it’s important that we understand that the concepts of “difficult marriage” and “good marriage” can be compatible. Fact is, the best relationships involve challenge because challenge is typically a prerequisite for experiencing the best.

If your marriage does not involve challenge (and even conflict) then you are, in all likelihood, barely scraping the surface of what is possible in terms of a life-charged relationship.

Here at All Pro Dad we understand that life is always a work in progress. And so are the best marriages. Use these “10 Ways to Survive (and Thrive) in a Difficult Marriage” as you work out your commitment to create the best relationships possible.

Think, “Leading from the front with the heart of a servant,” and take it from there:

1. Understand that the word “commitment” is the most important element in the meaning of love:

Great relationships are predicated on long-term faithfulness. Time is not just a great healer; time also provides the space we need to work things out.

2. Take a look at this biology 101 definition of “life” and apply it to your marriage:

Life is that which distinguishes something vital and functional from something that is dead.
Life is a force associated with animation, or vigor.
Life is a state characterized by metabolism, growth, the ability to react, reproduction and constant adaptation via internal change.

3. Tweak your perception:

Real life is challenging and life without challenge is, by definition, “life-less.”

All of us enjoy a little calm. But try viewing difficulties in your marriage as opportunities to grow. Perception can be reality.

4. Consider the fact that there are always two alternatives to every situation:

We can either elevate the experience…or make it worse. Your response sets the trajectory and sets into motion what is possible.

5. Connect with a support group:

Your wife and you both need to be surrounded by deliberate encouragement and loving accountability. To find that, you need to surround your marriage with couples who are in strong relationships.

6. Commit to positive change – yourself:

The only person you can change in a marriage is yourself. Positive personal growth can be the catalyst for positive change in the relationship.

7. Hold yourself accountable:

Do you want your spouse to change? Change yourself first. When we are willing to be the change we imagine we have already opened the gate for positive change in our spouse.

8. Never blame:

Resist the urge to blame your wife for difficulties, even when you know you’re doing your best. The assignment of blame is always a step backwards.

9. Always affirm:

Don’t lie (because insincerity always falls flat). However, when we find positives and then follow them with heart-felt affirmation, we demonstrate both compassion and belief. Belief is a strong asset to a marriage.

10. Love with increasing eloquence:

Always aim to raise your own game. When we love our wife with creativity and energy, what we’re doing is the best kind of leadership available. It’s called leading from the front with the heart of a servant.

  • Jess Stuart

    I’ve tried. I’m tired of doing 90% of the work maintaining our relationship. Jesus Christ my wife will not even say “thanks” anymore when I make a special effort to do something nice for her. I’ve never been unfaithful, and have worked very hard to support her financially, emotionally, and help out around the house. I believe she sees our marriage as some kind of game. She gets extremely upset whenever something does not go her way, and isn’t really willing to compromise on anything. There are days where I honestly believe she would rather see our marriage fall apart than to put in the extra effort to save it.

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