How to Get Past the Pain and Have a New Beginning

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So many people are frustrated in their marriage because they believe they have tried many different ways to improve the situation and these approaches didn’t work. This is very common. There’s a reason for this, however. Many people’s efforts to fix their marriages in the past have failed because they used an ineffective approach based on incorrect information – they simply didn’t know how.

In fact, most couples spend much of their time complaining, blaming and shaming each other and focusing mostly on their problems, often times with the help and guidance of a marriage counselor! Unfortunately, those efforts only contribute to weakening the relationship. What they really need is a step-by-step, proven system that will teach them the practical skills they need to have the marriage of their dreams!

If you wanted to learn how to swim,you wouldn’t just keep hoping and drowning, you’d take swimming lessons!

A new beginning starts with the recognition that you and your partner previously didn’t have all the tools or skills needed to be successful in your marriage. A recognition that:

Being happily married has very little to do with who you’re married to. It has a lot more to do with knowing how to be happily married.

Understanding this can allow you to forgive and let go of the pain and frustration of the marriage, allowing you to start off with a clean slate. Focus on learning practical skills, applying them immediately and beginning your brand new, totally fulfilling marriage today.

To learn how, check out our StrongMarriageNow System.

Was this helpful? Have questions? Please comment below.


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joe 12 years ago

iv read everything i just wish u had an address i could send the money to we got no credit card

Amy 12 years ago

I'm having a hard time forgiving my Husband who continues to hang out with two brothers one who assulted very badly. and one who keeps pulling my husband in the wrong derection . you know the the saying misery likes company well thats them too. And how can my husband forgive his brother for what he did to my face protecting my daughter. he seems to cover every thing up with drinking. i can for give my self and some what forgive them but i will never for get the hell they put me throught. and he doesn't see any wrong bring his 11 yr daughter around these disfuctionaly family which is effecting are daughter. of course he blames me. with all the info you have sent me has helped me in so many different ways. one I'm not crazy and two its his problem. It's made me stronger.And a better person I got my self respect back and when i get the blame for his bad behavior I think of stuff you've taught me and it doesn't hurt as bad . and i tell him its his to own not mine i worked real hard to get where i am even if your program doesn't help my has helped me be abetter person , mother, wife whether he see's it or not and it will be his loss. I really feel bad for our daughter. this info you send me keeps me balanced and i know no matter how hard it gets i am abetter person by doing my home work with you. and making peace with my self and not excepting anything but the best for me and my daughter. I still wish he would wake up and read everything i've read from you. may be at the end of the day he would feel better about him self.because i'm the only one who thinks whats best for him there just using him. I know me changing gives him a chance to see me in a different lite. who knows he might wake up . we can hope so but really not counting on it .so my saying I'm learning to live with out you. but i do pass on everything i learn because. i have four children 3 adults and i don't wont them ever to feel this pain and i have a son in law and daughter in law which this has helped me a better mother to who are in my life so i thank you for all your advise and will continue to learn. and i thinking about going back to school so i can give Marriage adive like you I find it very interesting.And people should have wonderful happy life long marriages. Any thing worth having is worth working for so thank you again.I'm at peace with my self and I thank you for that. i will keep you up dated on my progress. and if anything changes.Thank you for making me see i can be a better person. and i will try and for give people who have really wronged me with out giving up my self respect.i will give up the negativity for sure i wont let it run my life any more . i choose to be happy. married or not perfered married i will still a ply the info you instilled in me and look forward to learn more and when money gets better i will buy your program i know it would be a good asset to my healing, learning and living. thank you again amy robb and GOD BLESS

Chuck 12 years ago

My wife had an affair because I wasn't there for her. Now we have seperated. I still love her, and would forgive her if se were to come back to me. She says she still loves me, but the fire has gone out. After so many years of hiding her true feelings, she has just drifted further from me. A.d now, it is easier for her to say it is over than to fight for love and our family. I know that I have made mistakes, and we would both need to be willing to really try to make it work. I know I would. If she doesn't, I hope she never feels the pain and regret wondering "what if I had given it one last try". I hope our children never have to wonder "why couldn't mom and dad make it work?" My advice to anyone, unless you are in an abusive relationship, is if you are offered another chance, take it and don't let it slip away. With the right tools, you can make it work. It really is about knowing how to stay married, even when the in love feeling fades. It is about the deeper love, knowing you would do anything for your partner. Take advantage of every moment and learn how to make yourself and your relationship better. Unfortunately, those that want to work on their relationship will read this, and those who dont will probably never see it. On the off chance you are one of the few that come across this, know that no matter how bad you feel, no matter how lost you are, if you think it is easier to say it is over - the greatest reward is knowing that you worked things out. There will be no regrets in the future when you look back. You will have the comfort that you have made yourself better and are happy. That you have your partner for life.

amybarnhartsd 12 years ago

Thank you so much for sharing your heartfelt advice Chuck. We at StrongMarriageNow wholeheartedly agree with you. We believe in investing in your marriage to fall back in love and make your marriage the one you really want. Thanks again for sharing your situation. FYI - We just came out with a solution that may be helpful to you. It's designed to motivate a spouse who is checked out of the relationship to check back in and work on the marriage again. If you'd like to learn more about How to Get Your Partner Checked Back In, go here.

Michael 10 years ago

You know I've c;early read your article and found it interesting. My wife and I have been seperated now roughly at 5 months or better. I didn't leave her she left me or walked out several times over things that we could have sat down and discussed. Unfortunately when we married she never committed herself to our marriage because it was easy to walk out of a marriage she had did it twice before. She doesn't understand how having to introduce her sons to another man hurts them every time. I wish that she never cheated on me the way she did and spent money on another man this all just KILLED my spirit. This was my first marriage and her third and I asked can't you be committed to someone instead of running to another man all the time. It's been extremly DARK for me because now I take medicine for depression and she thinks what she has done only hurt me but it also hurt my son and her two boys. Sad to say she only thought about her feelings because some clown filled her head up with BS and she decided to go chase his dreams until she gets tired and move on from him at some point. People change marriages, relationships and so called love like they change there shoes and thats so unfortunate. I believe that we should stand for something other than just lay for nothig, But still I pray!!

Michael 10 years ago

I agreed to most of your responce I'm dealing with simular concerns of feelig alone and hurt by someones selfish and inconsiderate actions. Wow!!!!

Trevor 10 years ago

Hello, My wife says she loves me, but is not in love with me. We have been together for about twenty years. We have only been married for eight. We have been hit very had by the economy We are/both biz owners. One (my wifes) was hit the hardest and is now closed. We have lost some of our investments and are trying to rebuild. My wife crashed, at times she cant even get out of her room or house. She hates her life and says she has no dreams or goals. Very down and neg alot. We were is seperate rooms and now she filed for devorice. There is alot more to this story, however i would be writing for days. J She says she would like to see us back together, but not sure it will happen. She needs to be apart and figure out herself. She cant love me until she loves herself. We both looked at your program. We liked it and ordered it. Once she started getting into it and the program wanted us to spend more time together, she said no..... Im not doing this program yuck. She has been seeing a therapist for 3 years now it doesn't seem to help it seems as though she's drifting further away and has less patience or feeling for me or anything that I do when I try to be nice she seems to act as if I'm trying to control and or dictate what she should do at all times which is not my intent we also have 4 children at home sore wholesale is very chaotic and we have our 1 of the oldest boys move back in that is 21 which cause even more chaos in stress I am stand and our other home now we are going to bird nest until the divorce is final so the kids will stay at our house and we will change homes every other week this is hurting me a lot I don't know what to do to help keep my marriage together or my family together again there is a lot more to the story I just can't get it all in the short email I'm just looking for some assistance. Trevor

Mr.Dana Hill 10 years ago

Hello October12th I was removed from my home by an order of protection. I thought my wife was having an affair. She had been placing herself with a friend of mine on several occasions. They both said there was nothing going on. But I didn't believe them. I went into a severe depression and would accuse constantly. I have a history of outbursts of anger, which my 3 children have seen. They're 6 and under. In August my wife and I got into a bad argument and I told her if I found out if she was lying to me about the affair I would kill them both. Even though I apologized later she became depressed and avoided me. She told me she wanted to separate. I said Im not leaving. She said I've known many couples who have separated and come back together and they're marriages are stronger. I said I'm not going to separate and be out there somewhere with a glimmer of hope were getting back together and you send me divorce papers. She said why do you give up so easy. Why won't you fight for your marriage and your children. She said she wanted me out by the end of October. So I knew she was serious, so I started looking for a place to stay. As the October approached I was feeling alright about moving out. I had a heart to heart talk with my friend (the one I accused her of sleeping with). He convinced me nothing was going on. On October 11th I told my wife I was going to move out of our room and move into the spare room and give her space. About 12:30 am that evening as she was sleeping I walked into our bedroom and woke her up and begged her to let me stay. I said I have no where to go. Of course she was angry at me and told me to get out. I started crying and begging and pleading with her even more. Not attractive traits in a man. The next day she went down for the order of protection. I was ordered to stay away from her and the kids for 90 day interim which will be up on February 1st. I've been seeing my children every other Saturday from 9 to 5. In December she filed for divorce. I've been in counseling for my anger issues since the first week of October. I'm also on Paxil. I called her after being served with papers. I said Ethelyn I just got divorce papers. She said I know, it's not final. She said she had the children in the car and couldn't talk. About a month ago when all those children were shot in Connecticut it made me think about my children. I called her and left her a voicemail telling her to give my children a hug. I was just thinking about them after what happened.She called me back which she didn't have to and said she was sad this is a lose lose situation and nobody will win. I said it doesnt have to be that way. I told her I m not telling you I've changed. But I can tell you I'm changing. She said she was glad I was getting help and she did see a change.I asked her if there was a chance of reconciliation. She said there is but I'm at work and I can't talk right now.So I said good bye.Then the Friday before Christmas she called me to confirm the children's visitation. She said I just wanted you to know I wanted you to come over and be with me and the kids but. my lawyer said I should stick to the order of protection. At least I know she's thinking of me. We've been apart now for 3 months. I feel as if were strangers. We only talk for a few minutes every other Saturday. Come February I have no idea what to say to her. I ordered How to get your partner checked back in. But like I said I won't be able to talk to her till Feb. 1.Can you email me please! Thank You Mr. Dana Hill

beverly 10 years ago

well, its hard to say whats go whats gone wrong in my marriage . all i know is now we are separated and i hate it . i love him with all my heart and no i hurt him , due to my selfish asks of wanting more from him . example ; i hated the house we lived in and begged for years to move into a nicer house , other than that we lost our house and i am blamed fully for that , he still lives in the house and is bought by his brother in law . but either way he still lives In the house he wants so bad. now i am hated fully , and cant even talk to him , he won't even talk about anything with me . instead im on the back end , having to not call or talk to him for wks , or unless it's urgent . the funny thing is , all the counselor or marriage fitness tells u not to talk to him , and if so say nice things. but that it needs a coach to talk to him , but how do u get that to happen ? i cant even get someone to talk to him. i would love help . can anyone help , i dont want to give up on my spouse , i just would love him to see that i important and that he should want to be with his wife first before his friends and toys .will he ever grow up . i want out marriage to wk , i dont give up. it's been 21 yrs

Sharon Dore-wills 10 years ago

currently separated from my husband everyday is struggle when I know in my heart and in my head Im still in love with him the police put a no contact order on him after a fight which I asked for him not to be charged just to get some help for his addiction and anger but where I live the police decide if charges should be layed ,know he says I pushed him to far that night so its my fault I got beat up and left with bruises and cracked rib I know I did not totally go without blame but there 2 people there that night and both take equal blame but he won t even try marriage counselling he just wants to move on forget about the last 33 years.

Gina Gatto 10 years ago

I believe your advice is always wonderful. However, it is predicated on the spouse being normal with no dysfunctional personality disorders. I tried all of the rational and reasonable advice I could find. And after 44 years of marriage, I finally found out why, in the last 4 years when things became unbearable, nothing would work for any length of time. I now know he possesses traits of narcissism, passive aggression, misogyny, and having no shame, no guilt, no conscience. Unfortunately, I believe a lot of spouses have no knowledge of these specific personality disorders, thus they can practice all the wise advice they find, and yet their suffering will never cease. It would be helpful to your readers if you would provide a little information on this issue. It would help many, many spouses to at least understand why their never-ending efforts to make the marriage work, were a true waste of time.

Daniel 10 years ago

Whats up with all these doom and damned posts? Sounds like your system doesn't work for most people with serious marital problems.

Marko 10 years ago

I just been told by my wife of 30 years that she had an affair 18 years ago. Her action was a direct reaction when I told her that I had an affair 6 years earlier. Yes, It took me 6 years living in agony, hating myself. I become very angry and violent towards her. Drinking was a norm. My wife was a wonderful, caring mother to our kids. We were new immigrants trying to establish ourself in the new country. So, working long hours was a norm. I asked her what I did wrong? I worked like a horse, took care of the family, pay mortgage. In the spare time we always went to the parks, to the ocean, or the mountain. She said that I treated her like a mother of our kids, not like a woman. I didn't have a nice words for her, there wasn't romance and we didn't have a communication. She told me that I lived for myself. And the other guy helped her to recover as a woman, they were talking for hours about different tings, he treated her as a Princess. I was very angry at the beginning after I heard about her affair. I always told that marriage was 50- 50 commitment. And I understood, that I was wrong. So I decided to give her 100% of myself. I didn't care about my wants, I just did everything to please her. And the miracle happened. She couldn't take it, without giving it back to me. The last two months are like a dream. We have the best days of our lives, spending time together, talking for hours. I talk more to her in the last two months than in the last 30 years of our marriage. I spent time in the garden with her ( I hate gardening), lol, and she is going on the long walks with me ( not her favorite thing). We do everything together. I love her more than ever, and I would do anything for her. And she is doing the same.

Eunice 10 years ago

I don't think it has anything to do with "the system" as you referred to it. It just goes to show how much people are hurting in marriages. Not everyone got married for the same reason - LOVE! (and true LOVE covers a multitude of issues). Some people are just "baiters" (as described by Dr. Phil), some people fail to communicate consistently (who they are, what they stand for, what they want and so on...), and then, there are some who just don't know how to continue building on a relationship. Marriage is WORK! Hard WORK! We (married couples) must make a concerted effort everyday to do something different or rear for our mate to keep the relationship interesting. We did it during the dating phase, which may have lasted for a few months or 2-3 years (that was the easy part). Try coming up with something different everyday for 9 years (while still maintaining the necessities for a family, friends and employment), you'll soon find out your brain don't have the ability to do this without borrowing ideas from someone else materials (the hard part). You must be careful how you throw stones, especially if you live in a glass house. -Eunice

Cynthia Green 10 years ago

Yes, this person really has a point - so true, and which I am just beginning to understand. It is still heartbreaking, especially when the other person who has the personality disorders did not display those for years. That I can't understand, why it would come out later. So what to do? Maybe therapy for that person alone in conjunction with couples work? Or should the person who has not given up, do just that - cut their losses and get on with the difficult but important job of self healing and emotional recovery?

Elena Nemec 9 years ago

Dear Dr Dana, Gina's story sounds somewhat similar to mine. Her husband sounds like mine - no sense of obligation, no sense of guilt or remorse for whatever he did, nothing is ever his fault, an inability to hold two way conversation, no conscience, lots of emotional and psychological abuse, lots of cheating, lies and deception. My strong sense of obligation and belief that everybody can change (thanks to self-help books and my lack of knowledge about personality disorders) kept me in the marriage far too long. When the sweet cycles became less frequent and the mean cycles more frequent and more severe over time and when I gathered knowledge via many 'real' books' and internet downloads and visits to psychologists and psychiatrists and when my Ex severely crossed the line, I finally decided to end my marriage of many, many years. I feel sad and wish if things were different, but on the whole I know that I did the right thing. It is impossible to make the marriage with a sociopaths (psychopath) work doesn't matter what you do and how much you try. I'm lucky that I gathered the knowledge and was able to 'save' what I could - some money and especially myself - I could have really ended up much worst if I did not have the knowledge about personality disorders. I think that public would benefit from the information about personality disorders and the fact that nobody can make the marriage with the sociopaths or psychopath work. While there are some excellent books written about these people by some psychologists (Dr Phil McGraw, Dr Robert Hare, Dr Martha Stout, Dr Susan Forward and few others) most of the people are not fortunate enough to know about these books and do not have time to read them. Please help others to remove themselves form the marriages that are never going to work before too much damage is done. PLEASE DO NOT PUBLISH MY REAL NAME MY COVER NAMEI WANT TO USE IS KATHRYN

KATHRYN 9 years ago


Debbie 9 years ago

I have been happily married for 24 yrs. My husbnd told me that he has been falling out of love with me for about five yrs. now, that really hit hard I neer saw it coming. this is killing me and i have been trying so hard to figue out what went wrong. He ays he dont know why and swears there is not another women. It seems that no matter what I do and how much I try he just tells me he dont know if he wants to make our marraige work. We went to some councling, but if he dont want to try I cant do it on my own. How ever I love him so much I dont no howI can go on with out him. We have 5 children all grown up and they are also cofused dont know what to think.

Mike_Olsen_SMN 9 years ago

Debbie, I am so sorry to hear about your relationship status. I have some great videos for you to check out that I think will help your situation:

joe 9 years ago

After i caught my wife in a 5yr affair she got pragnant right away without resolving the affair, i stayed on for the kids sake, now she can barely walk and knows i'm not the type that would leave someone in that condition. 47yrs living in a horrible marriage, married to a deceitful liar. Wish i had got the divorce when i caught her in his apt., phoned his wife, she divorced him immediately, they were married 6 mo., wouldn't give up the affair either, good for his wife.

Mike_Olsen_SMN 9 years ago

Joe, Are you still willing to try and make things work with your wife? If you are willing to continue to make your marriage work here is a video you should watch on "7 Steps to Survive an Affair."

Joe Schiewe 9 years ago

My wife and I have been trying to save our marriage for almost 25 years starting from day one. She told me within a year of our marriage that she was nervous about her lack of intimate feelings for me prior to our marriage but thought she was just nervous. She found out our wedding night that she was right to be nervous for she found any sexual intimacy with me to be completely revolting - weeping nearly 50% of our honeymoon. She received advise within a couple months of our marriage from a respected women that she knew to seek professional counseling and to keep trying to improve the marriage for her feelings would likely change. Twenty four years of various types of individual and couples counseling, thousand of hours of weeping and praying together, countless efforts to find something that she enjoys with me, three children, and several homes later and she still feels dreadful regarding any type of intimacy (emotionally, intellectually, socially, spiritually, physically, etc.) with me or any other man. She tells me that she feels that marrying me was the worst decision of her life and also feels incredibly guilty for putting me through hell. She considers me a good man but believes that I am definitely not a good spouse for her. Within the last two years of counseling, she has determined that for reasons unknown, that she stopped maturing relation ally around the age of 12, she questions her sexuality and has informed me that she was working on strengthening herself enough so she can leave me. I have always loved her even though as she puts it - she treats me like crap and wants me to go find some one that can provide me with the love that I deserve. I don't foresee that I will ever stopping loving her and believe as a Christian that re-marriage is not an option. I completely admit that there have been times when that I acted out of selfishness and hurt her but those times have been few and I have asked for forgiveness multiple times. She says that she desires that we work toward being friends so that we can function well enough to meet the kid's needs but I need to drop any hope for a long term and/or full marriage relationship. Most of your program tries to recoup some of the marriage intimacy of the past which we don't have. My current thoughts are to pursue the friendship and continue supporting, encouraging and loving her as long as she will love me. Do you agree?

Mike_Olsen_SMN 9 years ago

Wow, Joe. That's a really tough situation for both of you. Have you looked at Maybe if you focus on connecting in the other aspects of the relationship, the intimacy with develop?

Joe Schiewe 9 years ago

I may not understand your suggestion but it seems to me that is what we have been doing (early stages of the strongmarriagenow program principles) for the last 25 years - focusing on keeping a household, raising a family, supporting each others hobbies & desires, learning new things about each other, participating in various bonding exercises (date nights, participating in the others interests, making time to be together, sharing and confessing our hearts, etc.) recommended by our therapists. These efforts have led to a deepening intimacy of all types for her by me but she just never has been able to enjoy any of it. All it seems to lead to is more guilt for not being able to have any desire for intimacy (emotionally, socially, intellectually, physically, sexually, etc.) for me or any other man. She also has never had much luck with lasting or deep friendships with women. After 23+ years of sheer effort with little or no relational joy - she has decided (as much as her 12 year old relational skills will allow) that she needs to leave me to try to find a full and rich relationship with someone else. Nearly all of our past and present therapists/counselors (personal or couple) after learning of our efforts have given us much hope to save our marriage. I continue to hope for a miracle for I don't see my love for her ever changing.

Mike_Olsen_SMN 9 years ago

I hope you are able to find a solution that helps you both be happy. If she wants to try to stay, perhaps you can try to Strong Marriage solution together.

Evan 9 years ago

I want to save my marriage of 16 years. My wife told me after New year's that she loves me but does not love me like the way she use to. My heart stopped and my knees buckled. This came out of no where. I have had a severe medical problem for the last 6 years and they finally found a new medicine that helps. It is kidney issues. The old meds affected my sex life and zapped the energy from my body. It was so bad that I did not know at the time if I would survive. Well I have been on the new meds since mid Feb and what a difference. My energy has returned. I feel a live again. I want to go and do like never before. God helped me and gave me this miracle. My wife saw that I was changing for the better and still she moved out in mid March. She hears it from friends and family that I have really changed and she knows it. She tells people that She loves me and I am a great guy, but she hasn't changed her mind. She wants to see me this weekend in a neutral place. I just have a feeling it is just for telling me she is filing for divorce. I love my wife with all my heart and soul and wish she would listen to her heart instead of her friends. I am seeing a counselor weekly but she will not go into couples therapy. Can you help before it is too late.

Mike_Olsen_SMN 9 years ago

Hi, Evan - It sounds like you are making great changes in your life, and I'm glad you are talking to someone. We do have a great section on stopping the divorce. I hope you find some ideas!

Vera 8 years ago

I'm having a hard time with my husband. He just keeps lying and I don't know how to handle this. How do I get him to stop lying to me? I've told him that lying is worse than telling the truth and I would rather be hurt with the truth than comforted with lies. He was cheating on me for 5 years and had a child with the other woman. I want to save my marriage but I don't know if I can live with someone that lies so easily and it's because he is convinced that lying is better because he doesn't want to hurt me. I've also told him that I have heard the worst lie of all and that anything else is not going to make a difference.

Mike_Olsen_SMN 8 years ago

Hi Vera- We believe marriages can be saved after an affair, if it is what both parties desire.

Kimberly Kathaleen King 8 years ago

What if I am the only one who wants to save it? My husband can just assume ignore me and care less.

Kimberly Kathaleen King 8 years ago

What if I am the only one who wants to save it? My husband can just assume ignore me and care less.

Mike_Olsen_SMN 8 years ago

Hi Kimberly, that's pretty common, and we have several articles of advice for you.

Mike_Olsen_SMN 8 years ago

Hi Kimberly, that's pretty common, and we have several articles of advice for you.