BY CHIOMA OBINNA
Contrary to Biblical declaration that a man shall leave his mother and his father and be joined to his wife as husband and wife for ever, and that nothing should put them asunder, many marriages have collapsed.
According to statistics 50 per cent of marriages end in divorce. Unfortunately, some of the affected couples have continued to claim that “if an individual is not happy; then why stay married and be suffering for many years to come”. While some argued that there is no point staying because of children, as life is too short.
However, experts disagreed with these reasons and others saying maintaining a happy marriage is, to a large extent, about how couples approach each other.
According to them, the more they can see their marriage in a positive light and can be supportive and understanding of each other, the more successful their marriage will be.
Even when people are sure of their love, the decision to enter into marriage is always a gamble. An important question that naturally arises from this number is what are those who remain happy together doing right?
All marriages have their ups and downs; all people have their strengths and weaknesses; and all couples have areas of disagreement. According to experts viewing your marriage from a positive lens is a major factor to remain happy in marriage.
Those who are happy in their relationships see the parts of their marriage that are most positive as the parts that are essential. However, most importantly, they are flexible about this. As the positive and negative aspects of their relationship shift with time, so does their judgment about what is essential — but they always focus on the most positive aspects in the moment.
Along with this positive perspective, experts also noted that successful people in marriage also view their spouse’s problems, imperfections, or annoying habits in a way that neutralises their impact. One approach they use is viewing these things in a benevolent way. For instance, a wife might understand her husband’s snapping as the result of a hard day instead of thinking of him as just being disrespectful. Such positive attributions help relationships to remain stable and supportive. Another way partners remain happy together is by being aware of and acknowledging — positives while allowing themselves to get upset about specific problems. In contrast, spouses who tend to be more blaming and less understanding create a negative environment at home. For them, specific problems appear bigger and tend to snowball. Some people are inherently better at seeing the positive side of situations and understanding others from a more compassionate perspective. And they will certainly be happier for it. But for the rest of us, this is a skill that can be learned. For instance, couples can practice sharing what makes them feel loved and then practice doing those things.
Unfortunately, life sometimes makes it hard to be positive. We all have only a limited amount of time and energy. So when problems pile up (such as job stress, deaths of loved ones, illnesses, problems related to children), people’s inner resources become strained. Even the most charitable people can reach their limit, making it difficult to approach their marriage in positive ways. Because of this, experts in relationship say it is important for couples to nurture their relationship during the good times.
In the end, maintaining a happy marriage is, to a large extent, about how couples approach each other. The more they can see their marriage in a positive light and can be supportive and understanding of each other, the more successful their marriage will be.