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Archive for January 24th, 2012

 We all have problems along the way, but how we work together demonstrates how well we can rise above them. Treasuring one another is so important and vital to good marriage. Do you treat your partner like Fine China or a Paper Plate? (original posted Dec 1, 2010 – LINK)

Let me state that I am not a believer in non-monogamous relationships. I believe that we as humans can rise above our animalistic behaviors if we commit to our spouse (or significant other) and focus on our own behavior. Today, I want to write about marriage. People get married for several reasons, but too often I hear about one or both of the spouses “straying away” for even more reasons. Some of those are, “I was at a point of weakness…”; “This woman just turned me on and I lost all control…”; “It started as an innocent friendship…”; “My spouse has lost interest in sex…”; “He does not love me anymore…”; and on and on and on. Sure, we all have those times of temptations, but we should be able to get through them without entering into a sexual relationship with someone other than our spouse.

To turn away from a spouse does not always mean that one is having a sexual relationship. It can be an innocent friendship at first. We all need someone to confide in; hopefully that is a spouse. When it isn’t, problems can arise and rightly so. I am not saying that everything has to be shared with a spouse, but when a couple cannot confide in each other as best friends then there may be some problems. So, how do we avoid an infidelity situation? There is not one blanket cure-all or prevention vaccine, but there are some well-written books that have helped couples find their way back to each other though I do not want to recommend any one particular book here at this time.

Trust is the one thing that cannot be lost. If trust is lost or battered, a relationship is in jeopardy. So many times we want to blame the situation on the other person, but we must realize that we have an equal part in it. I cannot speak for infidelity, as to how to repair the relationship completely, but the one who has strayed has to show sorrow for their actions and the other must learn to forgive completely. The two must enter into a new relationship, one that aims at NOT focusing on what was before but focusing on what is to come. Too often we concentrate on the way it used to be, and we try so hard to get that ‘feeling’ back. We cannot return to the way it was-not completely, but both can try to work together to forge a new relationship-an even better and stronger relationship. But, (you knew I was going to say it) it requires WORK from both sides!

Dragonware China from wikipedia

One thing that I have seen that has worked but may not work in every couple is that the one who “strayed” sees and understands the hurt he or she has caused the other person. This experience happens because of love, a selfless love. He or she seeks forgiveness and the other one forgives. Those who have suffered a casualty and made it back with a true healthy relationship have gone through this and live as one. To be honest, I do not know many people who make a comeback with a strong relationship because much too often, one or the other is not willing to work at the marriage to overcome the problems. It takes TWO willing to become ONE. I say it is akin to paper plates and treasured china. China can be repaired, and with tender loving care can last a lifetime; however, paper plates are disposable and may not be a dime a dozen anymore but will not last. Our relationships should be like that of fine China. Each one should treat the other as the most treasured ‘possession’ in the world. Their relationship together is supreme.

Not long ago, there was a couple who seemed to have a wonderful marriage, but secrets were held dearly to the man’s heart. His wife discovered that he had entered into sexual relationships with other women while they were married. The woman was hurt to find out about this but was hurt even more when the man was not willing to try and salvage their marriage. In essence, he was not sorry for his straying. He wanted it to be her fault for her leaving him. Personally, I believe the woman would have forgiven him and they could have moved on because she has so much love to give, but the man wanted other things and it wasn’t about putting effort into the marriage to help heal it. I have watched as this couple separated and then divorced. It is so sad, especially to see one wanting to work on the marriage and the other not – just like throwing that paper plate into the trash can. Sad to say, but I believe divorce is best for the woman because I think she is better without him because I do not think he can be trusted. What a sad situation!

So, is your significant other and marriage partner a valuable piece of fine, irreplaceable China or a paper plate? It is all about how we treat others. Do you treat him or her like a paper plate? Maybe he or she is like every day dinnerware scraped and put into the dishwasher where he or she is battered with chemicals and hard spray? Perhaps he or she sits in the sink for days on end waiting for someone to come, wash, and give loving care? Or, do you treat him or her with care and concern as a family heirloom of fine China so as not to damage the plate in order for it to last a lifetime? We may not always be treated like we desire, but we must treat others, specifically spouses and significant others, as we would like to be treated. Please do not let your relationship be casual. It is not easy, but it is worth working for the greatest things in life with your spouse!

When I look up the word fidelity in the thesaurus in WORD, I find these words listed:  loyalty, faithfulness, reliability, trustworthiness, dependability, devotion, commitment, conformity. Before looking at your spouse to see how he or she falls into these categories, please look in the mirror and ask this of yourself. And, NEVER place blame on the other. It is so difficult to do, but it hurts so much.

May you grow in the garden together! Happy Gardening!

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