Avoid the fight of your life – Learn the 20+ early warning signals that means a marriage is in trouble

Far too many couples are waiting far too long to seek help so in today’s post I’m going to share my thoughts on what to look out for and what not to ignore.

This man was terrified…

I’ll never forget a couple who came for help far too late. Her pattern was not communicating her problems with him and his pattern was to assume her calm self was an indicator that she was happy.

As he walked into my room he looked terrified.

She had just told him she wanted a divorce – she was deadly serious – he could now see he was in the fight of his life.

In fact, this fight started years before and he never knew. The clock had been ticking and he just didn’t see the signs.

You see I need people fighting to protect their marriages much sooner. [Read more...]

“We both want our marriage to work – BUT it’s getting worse please help us”

“I never thought he would leave me.” “I can’t believe she just left” “I never knew things were this bad” These are the real messages I hear from people who ignored their partners cries for help and regretted it.

What couples who are struggling are not connecting with is they are in step-by-step process and if they take action now they can stop a marital disaster.

Today I’m going to help you understand it’s important to learn where you are so you can get real about your relationship and do something about it.

Below are the stages couples are going through without knowing. It’s important to understand where each of you is in this process.

Stage 1: Attraction – Love being together

Stage 2: Resistance – Problems starting to surface

Stage 3: Resentment – Problems not resolved

Stage 4: Detachment – Emotion protection

Stage 5: Decision – Position designed to take back control

Stage 6: Separation – Physical separation/Divorce [Read more...]

How do I help my failing marriage?

When you break down the process individuals and couples are going through to put their relationship into a crisis it’s easy to see why they are struggling to keep their connection alive. 

Helping couples to see where they are going wrong is a key skill to master to help them save and protect their marriage.

As you scan today’s post I will share with you a key strategy for helping couples out of crisis and a couple who was on the brink of divorce who needed help fast…

Before I share this strategy two steps are critical for couples in crisis to learn. Enlighten both people to understand how they have broken their marriage so they don’t repeat that mistake and help them learn what they must now do to keep it passionately alive.

These two understandings are key to keeping their foundations strong to support them for life.

Once people understand what’s really happening to themselves and each other they can replace their natural fears and self-protection patterns with understanding and confidence.

The goal is to help couples build confidence that no matter what hits them they both know what to do to protect their marriage as a team.

These skills are not natural and so they must be taught. [Read more...]

He wanted to know what to do to fix it…

My mission is very simple, empower individuals to become valuable to themselves their partner and their relationship so they can be effective leaders for their children and each other.

To achieve this I offer 3 very simple steps to achieve 2 very powerful goals.

  1. I commit to my clients to provide a very clear theory as to why the process they are going through with me works as long as they follow it.
  2. Give them easy to learn steps that deal with complex challenges.
  3. I help the couple apply this knowledge practically to their marriage.

The two goals couples need to achieve is first to breakthrough their presenting challenges. The next goal is to make sure they have all the tools they need to successfully navigate their lives together. [Read more...]

“We need a second opinion fast! – We’ve been told we should divorce?”

“You need to divorce!” This was the message a couple was given by a lady that had been helping them through their marital crisis.

A couple came to me with this story not sure what to do.

It’s an important story to share because ending a marriage is life changing. With so many people making mistakes they end up regretting it’s so important for couples to get to grips with why they are really in trouble.

It’s also important that you get the right help for your specific challenge. I remember another couple sharing with me a story where they got into deeper crisis by trying to fix what they thought was a sexual problem with a sex therapist.

Logical thought as they were not having sex… BUT! – The real problem they had was rooted in a deep emotional disconnection and this was causing their sexual disconnection.

So they briefed someone to help them fix a symptom rather than a cause. This nearly broke that marriage.

So back to the first couple – this is what this couple shared with me… [Read more...]

Stuck in a marriage with negative behavioural patterns

Three couples finished their marriage breakthrough program with me this week. Their individual challenges were a dramatic loss of trust, loss of love and an affair. Each one was on the edge of divorce with both people suffering not sure which way to turn. Each couple reported to me their relationship is now significantly better than it’s ever been.

Thankfully these couples and their children now have a future that makes sense. For them it’s a huge relief they are out of their own personal hell and now living confident relationships.

To help these couples out of hell one of their challenges was due to very negative spirals they didn’t know how to deal with. Each couple had different patterns and for very different reasons.

Their patterns had to be interrupted and reconfigured so they could successfully reconnect. [Read more...]

Top 7 relationship mistakes that lead couples to severe marital stress and many to divorce

I spend year after year with couples from all over the world who travel to see me to gain life-changing solutions to some of the most challenging marital issues.

Living day-to-day with all these couples in varying degrees of crisis helps me to see that so many couples are creating very common problems in their own relationship without even realising.

So today I’m going to share with you what I’m seeing so you can look at what is happening in your own relationship.

Each one of these points below is critical to thoroughly understand: [Read more...]

Loss of love – Passionless Marriage – Affairs

During this time of year, my thoughts go to the reality of so many couples and families who are suffering due to the breakdown of their marriage. If you are in this horrible situation then please learn all you can so you are in a position to make the right choices for your relationship.

Naturally, there are couples that really shouldn’t be together…

…but there are so many that were at the end – lost and stuck not sure which way to turn and with the right direction they have rebuilt their connection and become a team where they now have each others backs.

These successful couples started to learn something new that helped them see the reality of their situation.

Learning is the key to successfully rebuilding a relationship. [Read more...]

“A path to a better relationship in 2018″

There is no question that creating a lifelong relationship is a significant challenge. So many couples are having problems because they are missing so much information when they first start their relationship which they are going to need for it to survive.

Sadly they don’t know this when they get together. Few people are looking for this critical information because the start of the relationship is giving them most if not all of what they need to feel happy.

So naturally, who wants to fix a problem we don’t have? Totally makes sense – right!

Unfortunately, many of us have been sold on the “happy ever after” not aware that we need a to approach our relationship in a very different way to ensure both people remain connected and excited for life. [Read more...]

“The meanings we create about our relationship becomes the bridge to either lasting love or divorce”

Lifelong researchers of the life cycle of marriages and intimate relationships know that certain common characteristics sit in all the couples that end up in divorce – contempt, lack of kindness, loss of compassion all sit at the core.

My burning question was what is it that takes couples that have freely chosen to live a life together to then move towards such destructive behaviours?

The answer to this question is critical if couples wish to protect their marriage from future problems and it’s a fundamental must if a couple in crisis are going to rebuild their marriage from their crisis.

What sits at the core of a couples challenges is fear. Fear I’m not enough, fear I’m not loved are very common and powerful themes, however, we all have our own unique fear machine and unique triggers that lead us to pain. [Read more...]

Resentments high and passion low?

When married life is NOT turning out to be the way they hoped, it’s natural for people to stack resentments towards their partner. This has the ability to have a powerfully destructive effect on the marriage of most couples without them knowing.

In today post I’m going to talk about a powerfully hidden force that couples don’t discover until it’s too late.

When a person stacks resentment towards their partner they start to create negative attachments with their partner and their relationship.

The resentments will move them towards creating an automatic filter that converts most things in the relationship into a negative experience.

Their husband or wife can start to feel that nothing they do works or is ever good enough. [Read more...]

The Sex-Starved Relationship

So who is to say how much sex is the right amount of sex for couples in committed long-term relationships? There are many theories, but whatever the frequency and level of engagement it’s important they are on the same page and happy. 

Research is telling us that a significant amount couples are disappointment with their sex lives. Some focused on quantity some on quality and some just grateful for whatever is on offer with an ongoing hint of resentment.

Some want a richer and more passionate sexual connection but are afraid to bring up their true needs and desires through fear of not being loved or accepted.

Some are just not interested and see sex as just sex so not very important, totally unaware of the suffering their partner is feeling each time they are rejected. So for some, they will give up asking and start detaching. [Read more...]

“We are at breaking point – I just can’t continue like this…”

When someone comes to me with this message what they are after is CERTAINTY – they want me to help them out of this private hell and into a better life.

They want the pain to stop. It’s likely they have been in emotional pain and suffering for a while, some can feel themselves emotionally detaching from their partner.

In their hearts, they know that life shouldn’t be this way, but they are paralysed not sure what to do for the best. Whichever way they turn there is either more pain and suffering or total uncertainty.

They may have tried to talk about it, but they are likely to become more frustrated as they go round in circles, but not really knowing why.

Both people are likely to be exhausted with it all so they end up seeking ways to meet their needs outside of the relationship.

So what do they do? Can they be helped? [Read more...]

She’s lost sexual interest in him – Why?

If you are a woman wondering why you have lost attraction and sexual interest in your husband, or you are a man confused/upset because your wife no longer seems interested in sex this post is for you.

Many naturally feminine women are becoming stuck in a masculine identity in their relationship as their husbands are struggling to know what to do to keep their wives emotionally safe.

Most husbands know how to keep her physically safe, but emotional security is a totally confusing concept for so many men.

For many women in a long-term relationship the bridge to a sexual connection is preceded by a need for an emotional connection this is what she needs to align with him so attraction is created within her for him. [Read more...]

“My husband has no empathy” – Has she got this right?

Many women come into my sessions with this message “My husband has no empathy”. What she has experienced is there seems to be from her perspective little emotion from him and little understanding of what she is saying or going through. 

For her, he has little desire to share his feelings with her or to make any changes that help her connect with him. This will naturally affect her trust in him and her desire to trust he will be there for her.

Historically she is likely to have tried to get through to him. This leaves her with the impression she has to emotionally look after herself and she can start to struggle to see the point of him… [Read more...]

Number one problem that all couples face – BUT they don’t know!

In today’s post I want to share with you something that is really important if your relationship is struggling or on the edge of divorce.

So week after week I sit with couples in all manner of crisis. Affairs, loss of love, power struggles, communication problems to name a few.

These situations are always complex in terms of how they have been generated, this means the couples are creating their very own unique path to crisis.

What’s simple to see is the trends all couples are doing.

One of my observations is people in or on the road to crisis stop being who they really are when they are with their partner. [Read more...]

Change the patterns of behaviour that are hurting your relationship

We all have behaviour patterns that help us lead efficient lives. We don’t want to think about which shoe we always put on first. BUT… What we do need to look at is the habitual patterns we have that are damaging our lives and our relationships.

Many people are totally unaware of how their actions are leading themselves to an unhappy place. With some basic knowledge of what’s really going on they can develop new and powerful skills that can grow both themselves and their relationships.

One of the challenges all couples face is both people in the relationship have created patterns of behaviour without knowing.

This has two effects, either their patterns have lead them to a loving, connected passionate life together, or their patterns have lead them to feel disconnected from each other.

What’s great about any pattern is it can be quickly changed once you know why it’s there. So the person with a pattern that is damaging their relationship is not hardwired to repeat their pattern, even though they do it without thought and will defend it. [Read more...]

7 Popular Posts on StephenHedger.com

At least once per year I like to highlight popular posts for new readers and remind long-term readers of important messages that are easy to forget. 

There is no question that relationships are complicated, this is why I have committed to help people across the globe with my perspective on relationships through this free blog.

My unique perspective comes from spending most of my week with couples in crisis on the brink of divorce. [Read more...]

20 Relationship Facts Most People Don’t Know Are Damaging

Below is a list of challenges many people are not aware of that can have a profound affect on the quality of their relationship. It’s not in any kind of order so I wonder how many you are aware of.

1. If you protect yourself from the person you married the love will slowly die, this because you can’t love your partner and protect yourself from them at the same time.

2. Many women criticise their husbands because they think their husband will hear them and change. Criticism for men creates emotional distance from their wife, not a desire to change in the way she wants.

3. When women in relationships enter rage at their husbands they can communicate every wrong (in her mind) he has ever done, she can put it in the most hurtful way and not let it go. Men hear this this as an attack he has to protect himself from. [Read more...]

Losing your identity in a marriage

Losing who you are is a very common problem especially for couples who spend extended time struggling to deal with their ongoing disconnection.

Many people can find they have lost a sense of who they are because over the years they have bent themselves out of shape to try to either please their partner, or be who they they think their partner wants them to be.

I see so many people who have lost who they are in their marriage and this can be devastating for this person and their partner as the relationship is starved of what it really needs to survive.

People who lose who they are suffer greatly.

Losing your essence is emotionally exhausting because whichever way they turn life can feel wrong this can be very frightening for that person. [Read more...]