Sadly too many couples are totally unaware of the destructive process they are in; this means they don’t take the right actions quickly enough and end up losing control of their lives.
This can be emotionally brutal on everyone involved.
So let look at a basic process I see every day.
When a couple’s connection becomes stressful, what follows for one or both people will be pain, and that pain can escalate if their problems are not resolved.
This is when couples should seek help when it’s obvious they can’t resolve their problems together.
If their problems are not resolved that pain then turns into suffering and this is where the big problems start.
With ongoing suffering comes an escalating need to self-protect and this breeds resentment.
Self-protection combined with resentment, when practised consistently, causes loss of feelings such as love, connection and attraction.
Now the couple has lost not just their connection but also their emotional security too.
When this process takes hold, how long can person(s) keep going?
Resentment is high, pleasure is low, their desire to meet each other’s needs is at an all-time low, and now the future can start to disappear as the trust becomes non-existent.
The window of opportunity to save the marriage is becoming smaller at this point, and many are not seeking help until one person is making the end of the marriage noises.
It’s essential couples act much faster so they don’t miss their chance as it may be their only one.
This is because that window at some point will permanently be closed as one person will reach their tipping point.
What stops many people from taking the last step is generally children, money and uncertainty.
If it were not for the children, the complicated finances and the uncertainty of what divorce will bring, I’m convinced many couples would part much faster.
Some people are waiting to feel so numb the consequences don’t matter.
Some are in so much pain; the consequences are overshadowed by their need to escape and feel free of their suffering.
It is possible to help someone back after the tipping point, but the stress of this is significant on both people and involves a complex strategy.
My advice is to embrace the understanding that the relationship isn’t working as soon as possible and admit together you both don’t know what to do to put it back on track.
It would then help if couples then embraced the fact they both need professional support before the problems go too far and they find themselves in the fight of their lives.