Everyone may occasionally do or say something in their marriage that makes them look bad, and that’s ok……as long as it doesn’t become habit. There area few basic dangerous habits to have in marriage that could be a deal breaker.
The first one is blame. You know, the blame game. Blame puts pressure on your spouse by putting responsibility on them instead of looking at yourself. This can be because of several reasons. It can come from fear of making a decision, feelings of resentment, wanting to stay in a comfort zone afraid of change, even emotional stress. It can be hard, but if you feel yourself blaming your spouse, take a second and look inside and see if maybe it comes from within.
Next, is to complain and nag. This is especially destructive because it can snowball very easily into hurtful comments and things can be said that are hard to overcome. These habits tend to put your spouse on the defense, escalating to a fight. It is disrespectful. Instead of being a spouse, it can make you sound like a parent. If you try showing a little appreciation and just stop complaining, you might see a big difference in your relationship.
Criticizing your spouse is especially deadly to a marriage. When one spouse does the constant criticizing, it can lead to a pattern. One spouse is criticizing, and the other tunes out. Unfortunately, the people we love the most are also the ones we attack the most. It can wear down your spouse and ultimately destroy trust. The relationship you have will eventually crumble and be unfulfilling. It is a basic step, but next time you feel a criticism coming on, take a breath and just try making a simple request for what you really want and be specific…….then back off.
Lastly, let’s talk about threatening or punishing your spouse. Sounds pretty evil, right? But in reality it can be really easy to fall right into this habit. It may start with a simple little thing like you ask the spouse to pick up clothes off the floor, ending with a threat to stop doing all laundry. Or worse, silently dishing out a punishment, anything from withholding sex to not speaking. You are probably thinking, well that’s no big deal, laundry, but in reality it can be all the little things that lead to big things.Demands imply power and obviously in a relationship there should be a balance of power. Instead of threats and punishments, try finding ways to to meet each others needs and be there for each other. Motivate each other to be a real partner.
If you take the time to talk with respect to your spouse, more than likely they will respond in kind. If your marriage truly means anything to you, put the effort forth and give your spouse the opportunity to participate.