Happily Ever After Requires Hard Work


Happily Ever After Requires Hard Work
You meet the right person and fall in love, you marry and live happily ever after… Or do you?

Finding Mr. or Ms. Right is a story many of us long to believe – despite the evidence to the contrary. More than one-third of marriages in America are expected to end in divorce within 30 years. Couples are now marrying later in life and finding themselves afraid of being another statistic of divorce.

The problem is that Americans are trying to adhere to an old paradigm of marriage – handed down from their grandparents and great-grandparents – when the norm was “she looked after the kids and home; he went out and plowed the fields.” Our modern society is dramatically different. Women are now meeting men as equals, and that’s where the ambivalence begins. The traditional marriage is no longer the norm. It has been replaced by a “partnership marriage.” Some people are even seeking a conscious, spiritual marriage. But to make these new forms of relationship work, people need a lot more awareness and communication skills than what their parents and grandparents had.


These challenges actually offer us tremendous opportunities, because partnership marriages allow people to start seeing their relationship as a chance for personal growth. Each partner must take more personal responsibility for their happiness and fulfillment – you don’t get to just blame your partner for your misery and unhappiness.  

So, what makes for a strong couple and a strong family? Here are some key points to develop and nurture a powerful, loving and passionate relationship:

  1. Get to know one another’s needs. It makes a huge difference when couples make a conscious effort to learn about themselves and each other.
  2. Make the relationship a priority. You need to spend time every day connecting with your partner in a real way – not simply a perfunctory kiss on the cheek as you leave the house. Couples need to stay connected and stay current. Don’t let things build up - deal with challenges on an ongoing basis.
  3. Make time to get away alone as a couple. You need to have one-on-one time with your partner. You can’t expect to have a good connection with your partner if you don’t spend time together. Go out on a date once a week. Aim to spend a total of at least fifteen hours (awake) together during the week. That’s about 10% of your waking hours.
  4. Men should associate with other men on a meaningful level. This doesn’t mean only talking about sports, but yes, that does count. Men need the company of other men to share struggles, challenges, and successes. Men need to develop a powerful support network where they can be real where they can say what’s really going on with their relationships, with their kids, and with their career. Many men today suffer from ‘father hunger’ because their dads were absent, working two jobs, or otherwise emotionally unavailable.                                        <<Go to Next Page>>
This article was originally published at MarriageDoctor.com. Reprinted with permission.
Article contributed by
Advanced Member

Dr. Rita DeMaria

Marriage and Family Therapist

Rita DeMaria, Ph.D., LMFT, CST  215-628-2450

Location: Blue Bell, PA
Credentials: CST, LMFT, MS, PhD
Specialties: Addiction, Divorce/Divorce Prevention, Infidelity / Affair Recovery, Sexuality
Other Articles/News by Dr. Rita DeMaria:

Find Happiness Now — No Matter What Your Situation!


Everyone wants to be happy; it is a universal need. With today's speed-it-up pace of life and the daily distractions that we face, we must be smarter about the pursuit of happiness. In my grandmother's day, life was simpler. She was free of things like driving and gridlock, email, voicemail, and news and social media overload. But I do have ... Read more

The 5 Stages Of Every Marriage


All marital unions are not created equal; but they all go through some predictable stages. The timing may differ, and the way a couple manages the phase they're in varies widely, but most of the stages happen, to most of us. Understanding the stages gives you the tools you need to move through with your loving union intact. Here's what you need to ... Read more

How Healthy Relationships Build A Stronger America


Posted on Philly.com Tue, Jun. 15, 2004 When the Bush administration announced its $1.5 billion "healthy marriage initiative" earlier this year, it set off a controversy. Senate hearings on the value of marriage? "What's going on?" people asked. As a marriage and family therapist who has worked with struggling couples in the ... Read more

See More

My Videos
Must-see Videos
Most Popular