One of the most common questions we receive, though worded in a variety of ways, is all about whether a marriage can be saved when just one spouse is taking the initiative to work on it.
Well, the short answer is YES!
If you think of marriage like a dance – when one person changes the dance moves, the whole dance changes. It’s important to remember that if one spouse wants a divorce, they want a divorce from the way the relationship is now. If the relationship changes, they may not want to end things after all!
Whether it’s taking steps to improve your sex life, managing finances, learning better communication skills, or any other aspect of improving your marriage (or combination of improvements), the change in behavior can change the whole dynamic of the marriage. Again, if one person changes the steps, the whole dance changes with it.
If you’re stepping up to be the best husband or wife you can be, your spouse will likely take notice. Even if their behavior doesn’t change right away, the fights won’t be able to happen the same way, the problems won’t arise the same way, and you won’t react the same way if you’ve changed your own outlook and actions.
As we’ve advised before, if your spouse wants out of the marriage and you don’t, your first course of action is becoming the person that they would want to marry!
As you learn and master these new relationship skills, this will change your marriage for the better, and ideally, your spouse will see the kind of marriage you’re working hard to create. Once they start to see and experience the improvements, they will likely follow suit.
If you’re doing everything in your power to save your marriage, and you can look in the mirror with confidence, knowing that you’ve done everything your possibly could, you will feel confident and empowered that you’re striving to make a difference – and this is actually attractive and noticeable to your spouse!
In fact, many of the couples we’ve helped come to us as a single spouse wanting to improve their marriages, and once they get on the right path, their spouse notices the positive changes – and begins to take interest in working on things as well.
It is absolutely possible to save a marriage when you’re the only one working on it, you just have to be willing to lead the dance!