Strengthening Your Marriage
Why Are Marriages Failing?
The story is told of a man who took his family to a favorite fishing spot on the banks of a beautiful mountain river. Bob had been looking forward to enjoying a day free from the stress of his job…….and a chance to enjoy focused time with his wife and children.
He had just set up his family with their fishing gear when he heard a man yelling “help….help”. Looking up he saw a man floating down the swift river waving his hands in distress. Trained to rescue people with the volunteer fire department, he jumped in the river, swam out to the man and brought him safely to shore.
He sat down with his family to enjoy the rest of the day, and again he heard “help……help” in the distance. And again, another man was waving his hands as he floated down the river. “Save me……..save me……” and again this family man responded with the same energy and compassion he had been trained to have.
Minutes later, the rescued man was safe on shore……..and Bob returned to his family to fish with them. After a couple of minutes, he again heard “help…..help”, but this time his compassion turned to frustration. He asked someone else to rescue the helpless man floating down the river, while shouting “I’M GOING UPSTREAM TO SEE WHO IS PUSHING ALL THESE PEOPLE INTO THE RIVER!”
For many years as a Marriage and Family Therapist, I have helped men and women pick up the pieces of their lives following the devastation of marital conflict and divorce. Their pain is real…….and it has been a privilege to companion them through the confusion to the establishment of new directions in their lives.
In this new chapter of my life, I’m determined to “go upstream” to see what is pushing couples into marital pain that often ends in divorce court. I’m convinced that most couples would be able to avoid divorce IF they learn to utilize healthy communication and conflict resolution tools. I am thankful for the research and tools developed by PREPARE/ENRICH (www.prepare-enrich.com). Learning a new language of effective communication is not easy, but the couples who are willing to invest their time and energy in this process, are celebrating marriage the way that God originally intended for a “one flesh union” to be enjoyed…….not merely endured.
Today is the time to strengthen your marriage……..don’t wait until your spouse comes and says “I think I want out”.
Dan Lundblad, Marriage Coach