Elements of a harmonious marriage
(The Freeman) - January 4, 2018 - 12:00am

Sandra Bornstein of “Irabornstein.com,” raised this question, "Why do some marriages ride the waves of adversity with ease while other partnerships become mired in one contentious battle after another?”

This reminds me of a young woman whose marriage is on the verge of breaking. She confided that she didn’t know what to do when she found out that her husband had a chat with a young woman and it seemed that they already are intimate. She confronted him and he denied. Since she was not convinced of his answer, she kept on pushing him to accept it, until her husband shouted at her, “Let’s separate!”

She was in a dilemma. Because if they would separate she would not know where to get money for the children if her husband would not give financial support especially that his work contract abroad had  already expired.

Indeed, marriage is not a bed of roses. It has its ups and downs, whereby one can be in a painful situation and be wallowed in a marshes of misery. Sometimes, one would not even know how to save the marriage even for the sake of the family.

For a harmonious marriage, Borsntein suggests to keep in mind the following elements:

Commitment. From the wedding ceremony onward, couples need to remain committed to their relationship. Common goals need to be discussed and agreed upon with the underlying that nothing is permanent. Some initial plans may need to be altered due to unforeseen circumstances. Even though the goals may change over time, the couple needs to remain faithful to their shared values.

Ongoing dialogue. The ability to talk out differences and reach compromises are two fundamental principles that cannot be disregarded. When two people fail to communicate effectively the marriage will become overly combative.

Celebrations. Appreciate life by taking time to enjoy special as well as ordinary moments. Milestone and cycle events should not be forgotten. The memories created by such events strengthen  marital relationship.

Compassion. By exhibiting empathy, partners are able to reaffirm their love for another. When times are tough due to injury, sickness, death of a loved one, or another challenge, spouses need to support one another. If your spouse isn’t in your corner, who is?

Tenderness. Physical attraction usually pulls two lovers together. Finding time  to touch one another and embrace should be encouraged during these more challenging moments. The closeness derived from these tender moments is crucial for a long lasting marriage.

Respect. Being able to accept a spouse’s differences will make it  easier to respect individuality.

Forgiving. Everyone makes mistakes that can cause hurtful feelings. Acknowledge one’s shortcomings . Saying you’re sorry with compunction goes a long way to mending hurt feelings.

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