We covered a lot of ground. We talked about my social anxiety, and about how he hated having to explain away my absence when he went out with friends. We talked about his priorities, and how he seemed unable to set boundaries with his work. We talked about how he felt tied to the area in which we lived, while I desperately wanted to leave. We talked about the late nights he spent in the city, and how he oftentimes neglected to tell me when he wasn't coming straight home from work.
"You have a spouse to come home to!" I said, looking for a sign that he still loved me. "Do you even want to be married?"
"I don't know," he said. "Maybe I don't."
I became angry. "You're not leaving me because you're going through a mid-life crisis at the age of 31," I snapped. "I'm not letting you do that." Survey Shows The 7-Year Itch Now Happens After 3 Years
He sighed. "I just feel as if marriage should be easier," he said. "We shouldn't have to compromise this much."
I looked at him in disbelief.
"That's what marriage is!" I said. "Marriage is about compromise! It isn't about finding your carbon copy. It isn't about finding your soul mate." I flung my hands into the air, exasperated. "It's about realizing that you love someone, and deciding that you choose them. You choose them to spend the rest of your life with. It's about realizing that, and then working your ass off to make it work!"
I began to sob.
"I can stay here," I said, frantic, desperate, realizing for the very first time, without a doubt, that I couldn't live without him. "We don't have to move away." I swallowed back snot and tears. I gasped for air. "And I'll go out with your friends more often. I'll be more social." I paused. "And I'll be more understanding. And… and… " He put his arm around me and told me not to cry. But I was scared. I had been pushing him away for no good reason, and now he was going to leave me.
He hasn't left me.
But I still feel as if things are precarious.
Is it possible to bring a marriage back from the brink?
I think so.
Can date nights, scheduled sex and love lists be your salvation? Can it help to seek out help? I hope so. (We've already scheduled our first therapy session.)
But more than anything else, I think you bring a marriage back from the brink at the moment you both realize, without a doubt, that you still love each other, and that you can't live without each other. You bring a marriage back from the brink when you grab ahold of it—determined to make things work—and refuse to let go.