Marriage commitment: long haul or short run?

Marriage commitment: long haul or short run?

What does commitment in marriage meant to you? Many comedians have joked about commitment, saying things like, "If you want to be married, you need to be committed…to a mental institution, that is."

Why is commitment to a marriage so difficult these days? I blame it on the fast food industry. Well, that is not quite fair. I blame it on the sense of entitlement and expectation of instant gratification that has come about over the last 30 or more years in this country.

Years ago as we were children waiting as our mother took us through a drive through for some fast food, my little brother, who must have been powerfully hungry at the time, said, "I don't want fast food; I want speed food." He was just a child, of course, but his words sum up the attitude I am talking about.

In relationships, as with many things in the United States, people want everything delivered instantly. Our advances in technology have made this sense of entitlement even more pronounced. The truth about relationships is that this need for speed is not going to work. Relationships do not form instantly, and if they do, they do not last.

Do you have the patience and willingness to stick around and learn to create the marriage that works for both you and your spouse? Or are you going to run as soon as things get uncomfortable? Think of your marriage like dining at a five star restaurant. That is slow food. You are there for the experience of dining, not to gulp down a double cheeseburger with fries.

Your reason for taking in a fine dining experience is to enjoy every part of it, to savor the wine, to enjoy each other's company, to really taste the food, and to relax. If you expect to get your food instantly and you have a pressing appointment afterwards, you miss out on the experience.

Commitment in a relationship is like this. Slow down and stick around. Enjoy the process of getting to know each other. Enjoy the experience of working through the difficulties. No, it will not all be pleasant and some of it is definitely the hardest thing you will ever do. What are the rewards of sticking it out? Among other things, a greater love for each other and the knowledge that you resisted the temptation to take the easy way out. Often, leaving and looking for someone better only gets you in the same tough spot, because you took yourself with you when you left your relationship.

If you want to learn how to be committed in your relationship, I would love to help. I invite you to get my free report, "Want to Improve your Marriage?
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