Couplehood- Do We Really Have What It Takes? - How To Win a Man's Heart

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August 10, 2014

Couplehood- Do We Really Have What It Takes?

Far too many couples enter marriage hoping, or believing that as long as they love one another, they can take on any challenge.

They believe that any conflict that arises or challenges that they face will be OK, simply by virtue of the fact that they have loving feelings for one another.

Sadly, in all practicality, this just isn’t the case. Feelings of love alone are not enough to help modern day couples overcome many of the challenges we face.

Without the tools and skills at the ready, many couples, particularly those in the first couple of years of marriage split.

When an unskilled couple comes across a challenge, they often begin to lose faith in themselves and then eventually in their partner, followed by the relationship.

This is the beginning of the end, as each part of the couple quickly fall into the “blame game,” after which point, there is so much hurt and anger that they forget why, or how they could have loved one another in the first place.

A successful relationship requires two strong individuals that are ready and prepared to put in the work that is required to keep a marriage going.

When a couple is well equipped with good skills, then they can face nearly any challenge, because the tools they need are at the ready.

A challenging marriage can be likened to changing a flat tire in the middle of a busy road.  As long as you have the equipment and the know-how, changing a tire can be a cinch.

But if you had a flat tire and lacked a spare tire, a jack and a lug wrench or any-one of those things, changing a tire on your own would be impossible.

Fortunately, when it comes to changing a tire, we can almost always call for help, and wait until someone comes to change it for us. We can usually tolerate the patience that is required for the tire to be changed.

However, when it comes to repairing a rocky marriage, how many of us can tolerate the patience and financial investment required to work on the relationship with a qualified expert, after the marriage has already begun to fall apart.

People are far happier to invest in something when the going is good, and far less likely to do so when it isn’t. This is part of the reason that learning what is required for a successful marriage is so crucial in the first few years of the relationship and even before one chooses a partner, before bad habits and poor communication sets in.

The difference between a marriage succeeding and failing can be the difference between a pilot who receives a flying license and one who did not.

Would anyone really consider entering a plane with a pilot who never properly learned how to fly a plane?  One may argue, but everyone has witnessed a couple relationship, so we all should know what to do.

For those of us who have flown on an airplane, could we possibly say that the experience has prepared us to fly one ourselves?

Heck no!

We would have to be incredibly stupid and/or irresponsible to consider such a thing.  The thought of entering marriage without good training (especially when the rate of success is so low in this day and age) should be no different.

If our marriage and family are the most important things in our lives, how could we possibly put this at risk?

And for those of us who have been married before, being married to one person, doesn’t mean that we know how to be married to someone else.

Each marriage is a world unto itself. Each couple has a different language, a different set of beliefs, and a different history that make it exciting and unique.

The trouble is that the excitement wares off when we realize that we are different people with different needs that require to be tended to simultaneously.

Without lots of awareness from the outset, we are putting ourselves and everyone involved at great risk.

Most of us don’t run the risk of wrecking other important and expensive things in our lives, so why do we take our marriages, the most precious thing to us, so lightly?

For many people, the fear of having to do the work that it takes at the outset to make things in a marriage work seems far more daunting than taking the risk of getting married completely unequipped.

But if we are true to ourselves and to our partners, and we really want to have a marriage that we can feel proud to be in, don’t we owe it to ourselves to take the time and invest in learning how to do it right, so that it is mutually satisfying to us both?

About the author

Micki Lavin-Pell

Micki Lavin-Pell, MS, MA has been a practicing Marriage and Family Therapist since 2002. Micki completed her training at Alma Family Therapy in Melbourne, Australia. She currently lives in Jerusalem, Israel and sees clients from all over the world via Skype.

She is also a qualified Prepare/Enrich educator. Prepare/Enrich is a research based program that exists in 13 different countries and has been proven to help newly-married and engaged couples create more successful and long lasting marriages.

Since completing her coursework, Micki has had the pleasure of counseling both individuals and couples from varied and diverse backgrounds.

Her work primarily consists of working with individuals who are looking to get married or couples in the early years of marriage looking for skills to improve all aspects of their relationship (communication, conflict resolution, finance, intimacy, in-laws, goal setting, etc…).

Micki’s private practice is called Relationship Renovation, as she believes that we all have the ability to create and develop the relationship that we desire.

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