Marriage is one of the hardest things you’ll ever do. Anytime two people who come together from two different worlds, to become “one,” they are headed for the challenges of a life time. If you think about it, it would be un-natural for it to be any other way.

Two different people who were raised in two different families, probably in two different regions, experienced two different parenting styles, and most likely have two different expectations as to what marriage is. Most likely, it’s based on the kind of marriage their parents had. Typically, both spouses have a vision of what they believe marriage is supposed to be.

The challenge begins when each spouse thinks that their way is the right and only way, and therefore their spouse, needless to say is w  r  o  n  g! Throughout years of counseling I’ve taken notice how the the pattern smoothly transitions into the next stage: “my way or the highway” mentality. This occurs typically around the 6 – 12 month time frame, and usually accompanies high levels of frustration. At that point, the whisper of that nasty “D” word (as in divorce), starts to creep up in the marital vocabulary.  Often times, that is when couples seek help. Continue reading →