SELF HELP RESOURCE - Relationships / Marriage

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Research on what makes a marriage work shows that people in a good marriage have completed the following psychological tasks: 
 
1. Separate emotionally from the family you grew up in; not to the point of estrangement, but enough so that your identity is separate from that of your parents and siblings. 
 
2. Build togetherness based on a shared intimacy and identity, while at the same time setting boundaries to protect each partner's autonomy. 

3. Establish a rich and pleasurable sexual relationship and protect it from the intrusions of the workplace and family obligations. 

4. For couples with children, embrace the daunting roles of parenthood and absorb the impact of a baby's entrance into the marriage. Learn to continue the work of protecting the privacy of you and your spouse as a couple. 

5. Confront and master the inevitable crises of life. For instance, a couple dealing with infertility communicated and provided support to each other throughout this difficult experience, ultimately growing closer as a couple. 

6. Maintain the strength of the marital bond in the face of adversity. Marriage should be a safe haven in which partners are able to express their differences, anger and conflict. 

7. Use humor and laughter to keep things in perspective and to avoid boredom and isolation. 

8. Nurture and comfort each other, satisfying each partner's needs for dependency and offering continuing encouragement and support. 

9. Keep alive the early romantic, idealized images of falling in love, while facing the sober realities of the changes wrought by time. For example, regularly setting aside quality time for dates and intimate moments, while also acknowledging and adapting to the changing dynamics and responsibilities that come with changing times and roles in different stages of life. 

 
This article is taken from the APA (American Psychological Association) Health Centre 

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Latest Comments

Vaish16 on 15 Jul 2020, 11:43 AM

Enjoyed every bit of this one. The best part was to have it linked with some examples which helped in giving more structure & imagery to the content. It beautifully covered the feelings and thought processes of both partners, the one needing space and the one feeling distressed by it.

KWIN on 30 Sep 2016, 12:57 PM

Maintaining a healthy Space for a 'Spacious' relationship...Very important!

252488 on 24 Feb 2016, 13:34 PM

Good one!!

monuram on 24 Feb 2016, 05:28 AM

really healpful :) thanks

liveyourdream on 11 Nov 2015, 12:29 PM

Great article!