How to Get Your Marriage Unstuck

Do you feel like you’ve tried and tried to improve your marriage but nothing seems to get better?  Do you feel frustrated and disappointed?  There is a better way.  In fact…

You Can Be Happy and Have a Happy Marriage!

When it comes right down to it, marriage is a choice.  It’s not magic.  It’s not a fairy tale.  It’s not simple and it’s certainly not always easy.  It’s simply two adults deciding to meet each other’s needs and make each other happy.  So, if you want to stay married, stay married.  If you want to be happily married, learn the skills you need and be happily married.  It’s your choice.

My research and experience over the years has shown me that there are seven major skill areas that couples need to learn in order to have a strong, healthy and happy marriage.  These are:

  •     Establishing Ground Rules
  •     Spending Quality Time Alone Together
  •     Communication and Understanding Each Other
  •     Resolving Conflict
  •     Agreeing on Money Issues
  •     Fairly Dividing Responsibilities
  •     and, Having a Satisfying and Healthy Sex Life

Couples that are strong in these areas have the best chance at having a long-term happy marriage.  One of the biggest mistakes people make, however, is that while they have good intentions to change, they don’t actually learn how to change or learn how to make those changes permanent.  For instance, they promise that they will try to meet their partner’s needs, but they have no idea how to figure out what those needs are, no idea how to go about changing their own behavior and even if they do figure it out, they rarely are able to make it last.

If you feel like this has happened in your relationship – in other words, if you think your marriage could use some work in one or more of these areas, there are a few places you can learn relationship skills.

One place to learn these skills is in Couples Therapy.  If you can find a qualified couples therapist with a great reputation, that you both feel a connection with, that fits into your schedule and that you can afford, they may be able to really help you.

Many people learn these skills working with their spiritual leader or participating in religion-based couples groups.  Again, make sure that these resources have a proven track record of, not just emphasizing the importance of staying married, but of actually helping couples learn the skills they need to be happily married.

Of course, there are many self-help books and products out there that cover some of the essential marriage skills I mentioned.  But this would be a good time for me to tell you that many of the topics I noted are inter-dependent, meaning that it rarely helps to fix just one aspect of your marriage.  Learning to be happily married is like tuning-up your car, you won’t fix it if you only change the spark plugs, there are a lot of other important parts that need attention.   That’s why I recommend learning all of the skills to set your marriage up for success.

And, of course, there is the StrongMarriageNow System that can really help you.   We designed our System to help couples learn all of the essential Marriage Success Skills in just 15 minutes a day.

Whatever path you choose, understand that having an ideal of what you want your marriage to look like isn’t enough.  You have to take action to make it happen.  And remember, it takes time to grow and adapt to new skill-sets. Have patience with yourself and your partner during this process, but stick with it!  Your relationship is worth the effort!

To learn more about choosing to be happy in your marriage using our online videos and downloadable exercises, check out our StrongMarriageNow System.

Are you wondering “how can I save my marriage? Have you recognized any other issues holding you back?  How can we help?  Please comment below.

Dr. Dana Fillmore and Amy Barnhart, co-Founders,

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Ket 10 years ago

My husband whom I married a couple of months ago is in denial about his behaviour which leads up to sexual addiction or masturbation - every time I confront him about a behaviour he is in denial (and I find it very abnormal), frustrating and angry. How can we even begin to start this marriage when theres no truth or honesty in it? He says I am imagining things, I am evil and talk alot of rubbish and no one would believe me because my husband comes over as a lovely quiet humble man! I do love him very much but feel that I just cannot continue if there is no transparency in our marriage. Pls help!!!

Mike_Olsen_SMN 10 years ago

Ket, You are right there needs to be truth and honesty in a marriage. I hope you will both take some time to read this article, "The Importance of Honesty."

Princess 9 years ago

Omg my husband does the same thing!!! It's bern a year since we've been married and every time I confront him on money, or fb girls or his job he freaks out calls me names and says I sm mental and I csuse fights cause I imagine all this in my head and I need help! Why do men make us women seem like we are nuts, when they are the guilty ones? I don't get it!!!

Mike_Olsen_SMN 9 years ago

Hi Princess - that reaction is not uncommon. Here is what it may mean -