The marriage rate is at a record low in this country, and a new study from Cornell University might have found the reason why. According to the study, two-thirds of cohabitating couples report that they fear divorce and the financial, legal, and emotional ramifications of a failed marriage. Fears such as these might prevent couples from tying the knot, particularly for younger generations who might have experienced the pain of divorce firsthand within their own childhood homes. Operating out of fear is never a good way to make a decision. While marriage should never be entered into lightly, an overwhelming fear of divorce can actually impede your happiness or serve to block your commitment to your partner — especially if your partner wants to take your relationship to the next level. Examine your past. As mentioned above, many children who witnessed their parents’ painful divorces might later become hesitant about marriage. A front-row seat to the deterioration of a relationship can be very traumatic, even more so if the situation involved infidelity, abuse, screaming, arguments, and the like. Overcoming this kind of a background can be very difficult, especially if you never worked through those emotions or addressed your lack of trust and fear of love. Marriage certainly isn’t always happy and fulfilling or even long-term, and it’s not for everyone. However, if your resistance to marriage is fear-based, you have to wake up to the fact that those nagging fears and “what if’s” can ruin your chance at happiness. Until you are willing to open your heart to all possibilities and trust that you will always be okay, you will never live your fullest life or enjoy the love and intimacy you deserve. By Dr. Laura Berman http://www.drlauraberman.com/sexual-health/afraid-of-marriage
The truest form of love
is how you behave
not how you
feel about them.
Men often convey feelings via actions, not words. Divorce often represents the loss of the one person a man feels comfortable verbalizing his emotions to. This may contribute to the fact that during a divorce men are less likely to seek emotional support from family members or a mental health professional, and are more likely than women to act on their feelings about divorce instead of verbalizing them. For example, loneliness may be expressed by increased social activity and avoiding an empty apartment at the end of the day. Other common external expressions of grief include working too much, having casual sexual relationships and even developing physical ailments. In the United States, societal expectations that men will quietly “tough it out” might also contribute to the tendency for men to express emotions non-verbally. Men, if you find your self developing strange physical symptoms or acting in a way that is unusual for you, stop and ask yourself, “is it possible that this is how I’m grieving?” Get professional help if you start expressing your grief through drug use or drinking. Having a delayed, less-direct means of expressing emotion does not equate to a lack of mourning. Though men seem to convey their feelings differently than women, they still need to process painful emotions in order to heal, grow, and move on after a divorce. While it may feel like going-against-the-cultural-grain for a man, seeking professional help can ease the grieving process and provide a confidential setting. From “For Men: Mourning the Divorce?” by Dr. Tom Rogat http://www.divorce360.com/divorce-articles/effects/emotional/for-men-mourning-the-divorce.aspx?artid=394
The only thing more unthinkable
than leaving was staying;
he only thing more impossible
than staying was leaving.
Recovering from any major loss requires a mourning period, and divorce is no exception. Grieving a divorce is an intensely personal process and is different for everyone depending on unique situational and personal factors. A healthy mourning process is typically thought to include recognizing and verbalizing the meaning of a loss and its associated feelings. However, men deal with relationships and stress differently than women, and often are not as verbally expressive. Should men really be expected to mourn in the same way as women? The answer appears to be ‘no’ according to Dr. Nehami Baum’s 2003 article, “The Male Way of Mourning Divorce: When, What and How. ” In fact, Dr. Baum found that men generally appear to mourn the end of a marriage quite differently than women. Men tend to start the grieving process later than women, sometimes even after a physical separation has taken place. This might reflect the fact that women are more likely to initiate the divorce process, giving them a head start on processing the emotions associated with it. Men also tend to recognize that a marriage is in trouble later than women, and they might prefer to wait until after they, or their wife, have actually moved out to address the emotional reality of divorce. Men might not feel that their ex-wife is the greatest loss during a divorce. For a divorced father, losing his family life (owning a home, having a set routine, a sense of identity and security) and daily interaction with the kids can feel like greater losses than the relationship with his wife. Men might need to deal with the anger and other powerful emotions that often accompany a loss of custody before they can mourn a spouse. They also might need to address the immediate task of adjusting to a very different lifestyle first. Some men never grieve the loss of a spouse directly; expressing it via the feelings of loss they have toward their children instead. From “For Men: Mourning the Divorce?” by Dr. Tom Rogat http://www.divorce360.com/divorce-articles/effects/emotional/for-men-mourning-the-divorce.aspx?artid=394
A divorce is like
but there’s less of you.
As a result of suppressing their emotions, men lose their connection with their families and wives and become vulnerable to addiction to drugs and alcohol. Women become depressed because they feel taken advantage of by husbands who do not supply their needs. Of course, they are part of the problem because they suppress their needs and wants in favor of children and husbands. They do not ask for what they want only what others want. Because of the fact that men learned, early on in their childhoods, that they must be aggressive to be masculine, they become arrogant, especially at home. It becomes easy for them to view their wives as weak. The relationship between men and women becomes one of the man believes he must be in control while expecting compliance from their wives. What husbands view as compliance is that, when they come home from work, the dinner table is set and the wife is warm and nurturing. If this is not fulfilled then he becomes verbally loud and verbally abusive. On the other hand, too many women give in to this scenario until they grow so depressed and unhappy with things that they fall out of love with their husbands. Then, husband and wife become silent, withdrawing from one another and becoming more distant. One example of this type of dynamic is that when the wife starts to assert her needs her husband withdraws into silence. Her frustration results in her, once again becoming silent. The road to divorce is then well paved. Part of the work of marriage counseling for these couples is to help men and women change in the way they interact. In other words, men must learn to give expression to their emotions rather than suppressing feelings until they become explosive and women must give voice to what they want and need rather than suppressing those things. Taken from a 2012 article by Dr. Allan Schwartz, Ph.D. http://www.mentalhelp.net/poc/view_doc.php?type=doc&id=48706
Feelings are not supposed to be logical.
Dangerous is the man who has
rationalized his emotions.