Some people are staying in broken relationships for far too long they spend years fearful to put their hand up and share they are genuinely unhappy.
Some people share with me they did tell their partner they were unhappy, but when nothing changed they still stayed in the marriage unaware this action was teaching their partner their problems were not that bad after all.
In contrast, far too many people are making the assumption their relationship is over when in reality if they could see and connect to the root of why they feel that way they could have a very different perspective.
So understanding the end of a relationship is complex and is highly traumatic if they both don’t agree.
So the mission for couples who are struggling isn’t to fix the marriage.
The mission is to discover if two intelligent people with the right information can understand their crisis and learn the skills they didn’t know they needed to create a dynamic that works for both of them.
One gentleman was 100% convinced his marriage was over; all he wanted to do was escape.
I shared with him the danger of leaving without fully understanding why their marriage had become destructive.
He ignored me and left his wife and family.
As he started to date other women, he quickly noticed that the emotions that he didn’t trust in his wife, he was now getting from these new women.
He was totally confused and came to share his experience with me.
I took him back into his marriage.
I shared with him I could see was he was genuinely in pain in his marriage, but the question was why was he in pain?
He said his wife was too controlling he wasn’t free; this is why he left.
We discovered that in his world, she controlled him by getting upset and angry at him.
He said he didn’t like the conflict so when she got upset, he either escaped or submitted.
This man was missing something fundamental. His lack of understanding of his wife emotions meant he felt under attack.
That was his translation, but not her intent at all.
The reality for her was she upset with him because he never understood her; she wasn’t trying to control him; she was trying to get through because she felt so alone.
So this man left his wife because he didn’t like his translation of her emotions.
He didn’t like what he did to himself, so he had to leave her.
This type of misunderstanding is so common for couples, for this couple all they both had to do was understand the correct translations of each other’s words and behaviours and they could then be on the same page.
This man learnt a fundamental lesson.
You cannot rely on the wrong DATA to make a life-changing decision.
Yes in his case she was saying bad words at volume, but was she really a mean, controlling women that wanted your life to be awful or was this for her the last attempt at getting through to you so you could see her pain and suffering based on feeling alone for years?
Couples need to learn the skills not only to correctly translate what their partner is really going through, but they must become effective observers of their own emotions to know when their own responses are destructive to themselves.
Genuine incompatibility is rarer than you would think.
Couples generally struggle because, either they have at some point in their life created destructive patterns of behaviour, or they simply don’t have the knowledge of how to be of value to a relationship/specifically their partner.
So my advice to the couples I see is firstly we are not trying to fix you.
We are expanding your knowledge so you can both understand what is confusing/upsetting.
You see when couples learn why their marriage became destructive how to correct that and then be of significant value to each other, their perspective of the future can change.
Marriages for life don’t just work; they need to keep a very specific attraction dynamic alive, or they become friends and for many, not very good ones.
Successful marriage are not the ones that stay together for years miserable, but at least we didn’t divorce.
Successful marriages are the ones that are full of connection, purpose and excitement.
If you have lost that energy then find out why. A few simple shifts of understanding are standing in the way of so many relationships happiness?
It’s 100% true not all people should be together but unless you know the real reason your marriage isn’t working it’s totally possible to recreate the same problems in new relationships.
The starting point for all couples is the understanding your partner is not the same as you, this means if you translate their behaviours using you own thoughts you are likely to be wrong about their meanings and their intent.