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Marriage Counselor Reveals 10 Relationship Stages Couples Must Go Through to Last

Marriage Counselor Reveals 10 Relationship Stages Couples Must Go Through

Most people don’t know that different stages of a relationship exist, but knowing this can help your relationship succeed. For example, once the honeymoon phase ends, couples start to settle into more of a long-term friendship. They realize that it takes effort and a conscious choice to make the relationship work. Then the real work begins after the butterflies start to fade. Unfortunately, movies and other media outlets have glamorized relationships and given people unrealistic expectations about them.

Many relationships fail because people expect to feel the same way about their partner after years of being together as they did in the very beginning. Of course, after having kids and dealing with life’s responsibilities, those exciting and intense feelings begin to fade. Perhaps this disappointment in reality not living up to fantasy may explain why around half of the marriages in the U.S. end in divorce.

However, if a couple chooses to remain together, they should learn about the different stages of a relationship, so they know what to expect. Below, we’ll go over them in more detail.

Here are ten relationship stages every couple should know about:

While different relationship stage theories exist, we will focus on the one by Dr. Mark Knapp, a renowned professor at the University of Texas. He studied patterns in relationships and was considered an expert in nonverbal communication research. While his model assumes that all relationships will eventually end, as evidenced by the coming apart phases, not all relationships will follow this pattern.

With that said, he came up with ten different stages, broken up into two phases: the coming together and coming apart phases. Let’s go over them more extensively below.

The Coming Together Phase

Relationships don’t all begin in the same way, but they usually have some things in common. Some people meet through online dating sites or in the workplace, while others meet during travels abroad. After the initial coming together phase, most couples will go through the following stages of a relationship.

  1. The Initiation Stage

This phase happens during the dating phase when you both are still getting to know each other. You know that you like one another, but you haven’t committed to each other yet. Right now, you may get together one or two times a week for dates where you gauge your compatibility with this person. You may feel that butterfly sensation in your stomach when you meet up with them, as everything feels fresh and exciting.

  1. The Experimentation Stage

If you decide that you wish to take things further, you get to know them on a deeper level. You may start dating formally and call each other boyfriend or girlfriend. Others begin to recognize you as a couple, and you make this person the center of your world. While you haven’t fallen in love with them yet, you realize the potential in this relationship and want to test the waters.

In this stage, you get to know their values and outlook on things and see if they match yours. While you probably don’t agree on everything, you have enough in common to want to continue dating them.

  1. Intensifying Stage

This time is the real honeymoon stage where everything goes smoothly, and you want to see them as much as possible. After work or on the weekends, you call or text your new beau and make plans to meetup or chat on the phone for a while. You start to feel comfortable enough with this person to where you want to divulge more intimate details about yourself. You find yourself developing deep feelings for this person and may begin to picture a future with them.

  1. Integration Stage

Since you’ve officially become a couple, you start to mesh your lives together. While you may not live together at this point, you still take each other into account when you make plans and revolve your lives around one another. You have routines and habits as a unit, and start to see yourselves as an “us” rather than a “me and you.”

  1. The Bonding Stage

As your relationship deepens, you start to bond more intensely. You may decide to live together or get married because you feel so strongly about each other. You’ve made sure that your ideals and values line up and that your personalities mesh well together. The people closest to you recognize the seriousness of your relationship, and you may decide to make a formal commitment, such as marriage.

The Coming Apart Phase

Unfortunately, not all relationships last forever. While some people stay married for life, many others decide to divorce or break up due to a variety of reasons. If you start to see any of these stages happening in your relationship, it may signal trouble in the near future.

Here are the stages of a relationship in the coming apart phase:

  1. The Differentiating Stage

Whether this happens after months or years together, every couple goes through this phase at some point. Even if the relationship lasts a lifetime, couples will have periods where they don’t see eye to eye on things. They may notice incompatibilities in their personalities or beliefs. They may see themselves as separate people rather than one unit. If you can’t overcome your differences, you may decide to break up during this phase.

  1. The Circumscribing Stage

The stages of a relationship include a phase where you drift further apart, called the circumscribing stage. You may start to set more boundaries for yourself and have more of your life separate from your significant other. You may begin to do things on your own accord without consulting with your partner first. As a result of the distance in your relationship, you may have more arguments or feelings of resentment.

The intimacy steadily decreases, and you may start sleeping in separate rooms or even moving back with friends or family for a while. You still love them, but you don’t see yourself as a unit any longer.

  1. The Stagnation Stage

You feel that the relationship is hurtling toward a dead end. In this stage, you don’t feel devoted to your partner like you used to and don’t see much of a future with them. While both of you may know that things have come to a standstill, you may have a hard time formally ending things. In the coming apart stages of a relationship, you have to decide to either reconcile or go your separate ways.

  1. The Avoidance Stage

In this phase, you try to avoid one another as much as possible. If you still live together, you may have separate lives and only interact if you have to talk about bills or other adult responsibilities. However, any feelings of love or devotion toward your partner have faded. You may start making plans to move out and have a life of your own so you can have closure.

  1. The Termination Stage

In this stage, you make a formal decision to end your relationship. Whether you have hard feelings or not, you realize that you don’t get along anymore and feel it’s best to move on. If you were married, you might start or finalize your divorce. If you had been living together, you decide to go your separate ways. You tell family and friends about your separation as well once you’ve made the decision.

The importance of understanding the stages of a relationship

Many people become confused or overwhelmed about their relationship because of the emotions involved. However, even if you love someone, you may grow apart or realize you want different things in life. Understanding the phases that relationships go through will give you awareness if you and your partner start to drift apart. It will also help you learn when to give a relationship the green light if you’ve just started dating someone.

Final thoughts about the stages of a relationship

Relationships all go through phases, but not all of them will last forever. Some couples can weather the stormy seas, while others decide to jump ship and start over with someone new. Of course, every relationship is unique, and what is right for one couple may not apply to another. No formal rulebook for life exists; we have to make it up as we go.

Therefore, no matter what relationship stage you find yourself in, know that the right person will stand by you through all the phases. If your relationship must come to an end, try to take the lessons you learned from it and keep an open heart for Mr. or Mrs. Right. They will come along when you least expect it, so enjoy your life and go with the flow. Exit a disharmonious relationship gracefully, and wish your ex well along their path in life.

Relationships may seem complicated, but when you find the right person, you’ll have clarity about life that you’ve never felt before.


How to Tell If Your Marriage Is Worth Saving (Or If It’s Time to Let Go)

How to Tell If Your Marriage Is Worth Saving (Or

There’s nothing better than spending eternal bliss with someone you love. Sadly, many marriages end in divorce. Some people hold on much longer than they should and only make themselves and others miserable.

Is Your Marriage Worth Saving?

How do you know if your marriage is worth keeping, and has the newlywed bliss worn off and has turned into a bitter battle for survival? Here are some tips to help you decide if your marriage is worth saving.

1. You Still Feel Butterflies When You See Them

Life and marriage are hard. When you bring two people together, the wedded bliss will quickly fade as the cares of life take over. However, you know there is still a fire burning if you feel those butterflies.

When they call you or walk into the room, do you still feel like a teenager melting in their arms? While it takes more than feelings to sustain a relationship, you must have a connection that can withstand life’s trials. If there are still any feelings at all left, then you can rekindle the fire that once burned strong.

2. They’re the One That You Want To Be With

When the world comes crashing down around you, your spouse is still the one you want to be with for the remainder of your natural life. When danger is all around you, you look to them for comfort. If you always find yourself picking up the phone to tell them about your day before you get home, call them on lunch, and text throughout the day, there is still an incredible connection that many people don’t have.

3. You Never Miss an Anniversary or Birthday Celebration

It’s always the little things that make a relationship unique. If you still celebrate all your anniversaries, birthdays, and plan unique gifts and getaways for each other, then it shows there are love and care still there.

Many guys and girls could care less about celebrating those little things like the anniversary of your first kiss. If you find someone who can remember all the small details that are so important, they are worth holding on to.

4. You Miss Each Other

If you were to go away for a weekend with your friends, would you always be thinking about what the other person was doing? Do you find yourself lonely and missing them even though others surround you?

If absence makes the heart grow fonder, and you can’t stand to be apart, then it might be worth saving this marriage.

5. You Don’t Argue or Fight

It’s healthy to disagree and get your opinion across, but if you go to great lengths to protect the other person, then it’s a sign that there’s something beautiful there. It takes a lot of patience and excellent communication to sustain a relationship. Being protective of their feelings, even in the heated moments, shows your love and devotion for them.

6. You’re Great Role Models

The best couples are the ones that can have disagreements about money or other issues, but they never take them out into the open. You make sure that you are always upfront and honest with each other, but you do it behind closed doors. When it comes to your family and children, you never air dirty laundry in front of others.

There’s nothing worse than a couple that fights and argues in front of others, especially your kids. It makes them feel uncomfortable, and they might feel as if they need to choose sides. If you are still great role models though there are issues, you may have something worth working on.

7. You Can’t Stand the Thought of Being Apart

Does it scare you at the thought of your relationship ending? Do you feel like you cannot live one day without them? Wanting to be close to the one you love is essential to make things work.

How does the other person feel about you? Is there devotion to you on the same level as your devotion to them? If the thought of them not being there when you wake up in the morning scares you, then your marriage may be worth saving.

8. The Good Outweighs the Bad

Into everyone’s life, a little rain must fall, but does the sunshine outweigh the storms? Can you look at your marriage and say that the good times have always been way better than the bad?

Sometimes relationships go through so many struggles that it becomes tough to stay together. However, if you can look at all the trials with a smile remembering something good that came out of it, then it’s a sign that you have something worthwhile.

9. You Both 100 Percent Committed

Are you both committed to each other no matter what the troubles you’re facing? Do you know that they’ve got your back, and are your biggest cheerleader? If one of you is in the relationship 100 percent and the other only 50 percent, then it’s hard to make things work.

While things may seem a bit turbulent right now, when you’re both committed to making it better, it makes a big difference.

10. You’re Still Number One

If you called your spouse right now and needed them to drop everything to get to you, would they come? It would help if you were committed for things to work, but you also need to know that they will put their life on hold to help you.

When the chips are down, they are right there when you need them. A love like that surely doesn’t come around very often, and you should invest time and effort into saving your union.

Know the ten signs that it is time to seek the aid of a marriage counselor.

Is it Time to Let Go of the Marriage?

You’ve read all the beautiful reasons why you should keep your marriage healthy, but how do you know when it’s time to move on? Don’t waste the best years of your life loving someone who could never love you the same way.

You deserve to have someone who will love you and be there for your 100 percent. Here are some signs it’s time to let them go.

1. You Argue 24/7

No one likes to live in a war zone. If you’re fighting and yelling every day, then you might want to rethink your union. It’s not healthy to live in a constant state of unrest, and you deserve to have a home filled with peace and love.

2. They’ve Cheated on You

Some people can forgive cheating and move on to have a great life. However, others cannot move past such a massive event. If they’ve cheated once or ten times, can you live with the betrayal?

3. Your Spouse is Not There for You

Do you need to schedule an appointment just to talk to them about the children or the finances? Is there work taking over their life and they have little time for the family? While this person may be trying to make a living and provide for you, it’s hard to have a relationship when the other party is married to their job or socially isolates you from their life.

4. You Can’t Trust Your Spouse Anymore

Do you have a hard time trusting him or her and doubt every word out of their mouth? When you’ve lied to time, and again, it makes it hard to believe. Lying is a horrible habit that can wreck relationships. Your wedded bliss can end abruptly if they lie and are dishonest about things.

5. You Dread Being Around Them

The spark that you once had it gone. There’s no longing for them to come home from work, and there are no more sweet nothings being whispered in your ear when you wake up. The fire that once burned so strong is now nothing more than smoldering coals.

Part of having a relationship is being together. If you find yourself dreading those times of intimacy or even being in the same room, then maybe it’s time to let them go.

Final Thoughts: Should You Stay in the Marriage or End Things?

It’s hard to make decisions about love and relationships. Sometimes people become quite comfortable with a routine and don’t want to change things. Though making changes are never easy, it’s not good to live in a toxic relationship either.

Newlywed bliss only lasts for a short time, and then you must face the real world and everyday life. There are odd work schedules, financial burdens, and cares that come about every day. Life certainly brings with it troubles that can have a dramatic impact on any relationship, but you must cleave to each other no matter what is going on around you.

Maybe you feel like the marriage has sustained so many blows that you can’t possibly go on another day? It would help if you tried counseling and time apart to work on your issues and then issues as a couple. This person shouldn’t make you miserable. Life and circumstances can get you down, but your spouse should be the one thing that you can always count on.


5 Signs Of Bad Communication In A Marriage

5 Signs Of Bad Communication In A Marriage

Any divorce lawyer will tell you that one of the most common reasons that a marriage fails is bad communication. People just don’t talk or express themselves as they used to. While some of this can be blamed on phones and other devices, a lot of it is simply two people who are unwilling to see eye to eye until it’s too late.

The good and bad news is that this poor communication doesn’t just “jump” to the end result of divorce. There are usually plenty of signs of communication problems in that way. Many couples may not even be aware of the symptoms.

According to a study published by Dr. Mary Ogechi Esere and other colleagues of The University of Illoran, Nigeria, a marriage without effective communication will crumble. Because of this, it’s essential to recognize and fix communication problems before the union gets to the point of collapsing. Here are five signs of bad communication in a marriage that you can begin to recognize and fix before they get out of control.

1. You have replaced listening with talking.

One of the most significant indicators of a failure to communicate is when communication becomes a one-way street. Sure, there is plenty of talking happening. The two of you aren’t missing a beat when it comes to sharing information.

You may share the details of your day or talk about any activities or chores that need to be done. You may speak about childcare concerns or bills, or even ask how work is going.

One person may even be expressing deeper concerns like how they’re feeling about certain things. This is where the real disconnection comes in. The other partner may simply respond with more talk.

The problem is that it’s all talk, just something that’s filling the air. Either one or both parties are simply not listening to the other. You hear each other, but you’re not processing what’s being said and taking the time to truly understand your partner’s feelings.

It’s like the wants, needs, and desires of each person are being tuned out. This type of dismissive behavior must be nipped in the bud early before it can have lasting damage to a marriage.

Each person must understand that merely hearing the other person isn’t enough. You must each think about what your partner is saying and process it. Only then can effective communication be restored, and a solution to whatever other problems are happening can be found.

2. You find yourself assuming how your partner is feeling.

It’s every person’s dream – to find someone who is on the same wavelength as they are. They want someone that’s so “in tune” with them that the person just automatically knows how they’re feeling.

On the surface, that sounds nice but, that only works in the cupcake stages of a relationship. This is because you’re only dealing with a limited range of emotions. However, keep in mind that we’re all a sophisticated container full of emotions brimming beneath the surface.

By the time you get married, you should have made it past all those initial, easy-to-read emotions. You should understand that there is more than what you can see. This means that you aren’t going always to be able to “read” your partner’s feelings.

That’s okay! It can be considered as healthy. After all, you’re most likely not a psychiatrist or a psychic. This is where communication comes in. You absolutely must be able to talk to each other about your feelings.

When you find yourself in a situation where you can’t or won’t talk to each other about your feelings, there is a severe breakdown of communication. There should never be a time where you’re assuming your partner’s feelings and vice versa. When this starts happening, it’s time to get together and work on the communication between the two of you.

3. You find yourself being irritated at even the smallest issues.

It may seem like your partner can do nothing right lately. You may find yourself wondering how he can be such a screwup. I mean, simple things aren’t even being done, simple needs aren’t being met, and you just too annoyed to even mention them.

When you stop to think about it, a lot of these situations are just that – situations. Not issues. You might not even be able to put your finger on why these things irritate you so much.

There may have even been a time where you thought these little nuances were cute. Those were simpler times. Times when it seemed your partner could do no wrong.

Those times don’t have to be gone forever. You can fix the issue of being irritated at everything if you fix the real issues that’s going on between you. There is only one way to fix those practical issues, and that is to change the bad communication.

You must be willing and able to express what’s irritating you. This doesn’t mean petty stuff. This means the real stuff that’s slowly chipping away at you. You also must be able to listen to your partner if they want to express what’s irritating them.

4. You feel more comfortable talking to someone outside of the marriage.

When you are more comfortable talking to someone outside of the marriage instead of your spouse, there is a clear issue with bad communication. Your spouse should always be the first person you can go to whenever you need to talk. You should feel comfortable in confiding in your spouse, and your spouse should feel the same way about confiding in you.

This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t ever confide in friends or family. It’s healthy to be able to talk to others outside of your relationship. Sometimes a fresh perspective on situations can help to open your eyes to specific issues.

However, they should never be a substitute for talking to your spouse. When you begin to avoid talking to your spouse in favor of talking to others, that’s when it’s not okay. That’s when you and your spouse need to talk more than ever, no matter how uncomfortable it can get.

There shouldn’t be any subject that you can’t talk to your spouse about. Even if specific issues push both of your buttons, you should still be confident in knowing that you can speak to your spouse even in disagreement. If not, you may both need to seek outside help together instead of individually.

5. Your sex life is terrible.

Sex might not be everything in a marriage, but it does count for a whole lot. When there is any type of problem in a marriage, you can be sure that it will be reflected through your sexual chemistry. If you’ve noticed a change in your sexual habits with your spouse, bad communication may be the blame.

Poor communication leads to a breakdown in other aspects of the relationship. This can include emotional, mental, and even spiritual elements. Once these things have been broken down due to lack of communication, what you have left is sex.

Sex alone doesn’t keep a marriage together.

You’ll begin to notice that physical bond breaking between you and your spouse. One or both of you may simply “not be in the mood” more often. By the time you’ve reached this point, you’ve probably let the lack of proper communication go too far.

According to Chris Kraft, Ph.D., a director of clinical services of the Sex and Gender Clinic at John Hopkins Medicine, there are plenty of sexual roadblocks that occur in marriages. It’s not necessarily even malicious roadblocks, just everyday circumstances like kids, bills, careers, and more.

The problems mainly occur when there is no communication between spouses about how they’re feeling about all of these things. “You need to talk about it because the resentment that builds up around feelings of inequality is one of the biggest killers of intimacy and sexuality,” says Dr. Kraft.

It’s time to rush into fixing your bad communication problem before it’s too late. It takes two to tango, so if you’re feeling the results of poor communication through your sex life, your spouse is feeling it also. Just sit down and have an honest conversation with each other.

Final Thoughts on Signs of Bad Communication in a Marriage

You got married for a reason. That reason had to have been worth it, right? If your answer is yes, then it’s time to fix the poor communication between you and your spouse.

Communication is what keeps a marriage secure. Sure, times may get tough, and your spirit may get drained from time to time, but this is when you need your partner the most. Use the five signs above to recognize when bad communication has become a problem in your marriage so you can fix it before it becomes a more significant issue.


Therapists Explain Importance of Setting Ground Rules Before Marriage

Therapists Explain Importance of Setting Ground Rules Before Marriage

Marriage is a consensual union where two people love and commit to each other for life. While tying the knot is done out of love, a couple truly does not understand the meaning of the word until they have weathered life’s storms together. Marriage is not for the faint of heart, but setting ground rules can prevent misunderstandings down the road.

Some find that once they are married, they feel more like roommates rather than spouses. The daily grind can get to everyone, and the responsibility that comes with such a commitment can be overwhelming. Ground rules are essential, and they should be established before you walk down the aisle.

Ground Rules for a Successful Marriage

If you want a successful partnership and a happy life, then you need to establish some ground rules early on. You may think that it sounds silly to put requirements on a relationship that has a foundation of love. But nothing can be nastier than a married couple throwing verbal punches during an argument. Here are some ground rules that can help you ensure your union is a long and blissful one.

Also, know that while you agree to these ground rules, they can be flexible–when both parties agree. For example, your feelings about starting a family might change one day. As long as both of you agree to amend these decisions–and play by the new ruling–you’ll do just fine!

1. Don’t Go to Bed Angry

There’s an old saying that states that you should never let the sun go down on your wrath. This is so important because the longer you allow frustrations to boil, the more apt it is to drive a wedge between the two of you.

Most arguments start over silly things, and they should be resolved before you go to bed. You will lie there all night and stew about what happened. As you replay the events in your mind, you will build the situation up to be bigger than it is, and it can easily cause you to resent your spouse.

If possible, don’t go to bed before at least committing to sort things out in the morning and to apologize for any wrongdoing.

2. Vow to Never Allow Family to Interfere

One of the most significant problems in marriages is the in-laws. In many cases, they act like outlaws when it comes to their loved ones. It’s essential to establish firm boundaries regarding the relatives early on.

Never allow your parents or siblings to speak ill of your partner. Additionally, you must ensure that they don’t stick their nose into your business. Your union must be strong, and you cannot let your relatives ruin your successful partnership.

In-laws can quickly destroy your relationship with meddling, especially when you have children. So it’s best that you set firm boundaries with them on what behaviors you expect and what you won’t tolerate.

3. Decide the Financial Stuff

There was a joint checking account in the olden days, and one person handled all the bills. Today’s couples are a bit more diverse in how finances are done. Do you tend to be old fashioned, or do you want to keep money separate?

It’s important to discuss these issues upfront. It can get very messy if two people are trying to pay bills and dipping into the proverbial cookie jar. Finances are one of the problems that can ruin a marriage quicker than anything else, so establish early on how things are done. Decide on a plan that is acceptable for both of you.

Another thing to consider is that neither party should make a significant purchase without talking to one another. Set a dollar limit that you shouldn’t go over without discussing it. The same should be said about opening credit and going in debt.

4. Determine if You Want Children

Another issue that is common among couples is the desire to be a parent. One may want to be a mom or dad while the other one isn’t interested in offspring. It doesn’t matter which side of the fence you are on; you need to voice your desires to your partner.

Don’t skip over the issue because you are afraid to tell your partner how you feel. It could cause a significant rift later.

5. Don’t Bring up the Past

Everyone has a past, and some histories are sketchier than others. When you create a union, you cannot consistently throw your partners past in their face. If your spouse was once addicted to drugs but pulled themselves out of that lifestyle, then they shouldn’t have to live with it being brought up constantly.

You cannot change your past, but you can change your future. Leave what’s behind you alone as it’s not a life sentence.

6. Always Be Honest

Dishonesty can be a quick way to head to divorce court. It’s easy to tell a little white lie now and again, but it can get you in real trouble. Trust your partner enough, to be honest. Make a pact that no matter how upset it might make the other person that you don’t lie to each other.

7. Vow to Keep the Doors of Communication Open

It’s hard to communicate once you’re not dating, and you’re living together. Make one of your ground rules that you keep an open line of communication with each other. Even though life is busy, you should at least have one night a week reserved for date night.

If it helps, keep a list of all the things you want to discuss during that time. Take time for each other, no matter how busy you are in life. Money and prosperity can only get you so far, but if you want true happiness, you will invest in your marriage.

8. Divorce is Not an Option

There may come the point and time in your life when you want to call it quits. Perhaps, you’ve grown apart, or you have had an affair. Life never goes as you plan. Marriages that last more than five years are the anomaly these days.

How do these people that stay married for 40-50 years do it? The key is they don’t quit, no matter how hard they want too. They keep going because they took vows to the other person to have and to hold, through sickness and in health.

While not every union withstands the test of time, don’t be so eager to give up. Make up in your mind that you’re not going to quit, but instead plan to honor your commitment.

9. Don’t Use Harsh Words

Negativity can destroy a bond. For every bit of constructive criticism that you give out, you should follow that with four things of praise. If you’re always telling your spouse all the things they do wrong, you will destroy their morale, and they will avoid you.

Even when you’re amid a heated argument, and you feel like calling names, don’t resort to childish games. Be a grown-up and civilly talk about things. Make a pact and set ground rules that you won’t call names or hit each other no matter what the situation.

10. Make Sure to Keep Personal Things Personal

One of the most significant ground rules in a marriage is learning to keep private things private. If your spouse calls their family or friends and tells them all your personal stuff, it can destroy your union. Make sure these rules extend to finances, romance, children, or any information you don’t want to be shared.

Establish rules about what things should never be shared beyond your union, and make sure you both keep these things out of the public.

11. Don’t Argue in Front of Children or Others

There are very few couples that agree on everything. However, take your arguments to a private area and don’t fight in front of children, relatives, or the public. When you disagree, no matter how trivial, go somewhere that you can discuss it calmly, and don’t get everyone else involved.

12. Make Your Relationship a Priority

Marriage takes work, and it’s not easy. Your union must be a priority every day. Your spouse, their needs, and desires, should always come before your own. When your commitment to your job is complete, your spouse and children get the next priority in your day.

If you want to hang with friends or relatives and do other things, they should be after your relationship needs are met.

Setting Ground Rules for a Happy Life

There’s no rule book when it comes to marriage; however, by establishing ground rules that cover the basics and significant issues, you can take care of many problems before they happen. Love and cherish one another no matter what life throws your way.

There are going to be hundreds of times that you want to throw in the towel and file for divorce. However, there’s something special about those who stick together no matter what comes their way. In sickness and in health are significant vowels to make to a person.

Take advice from older couples that have been married for decades. They can give you the keys to a successful marriage. Don’t take advice or seek wisdom from someone who has been divorced a couple of times. You want to make your union last, so you want all the help you can get.