Communication Is Important, But It's This Small Quality That Makes Marriages Work

What can you do when words aren't working anymore?

Last updated on Mar 21, 2024

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Married couples all want the same things. To be happy, feel deeply connected, share in love and trust, and have great communication. And while it may seem like a lot, it all boils down to one thing: a happy, loving successful marriage. So why, if all couples want their marriage to work, are there over 2 million divorces each year in the US? The problem is that these couples keep making unintentional mistakes with each other. People don’t know what to do to keep their relationships alive for a lifetime. Ready for the truth?


If your marriage isn’t happy You either want to solve the real problem or keep the problem going by not addressing it. You don’t know what the real problem is, so you can't address it. That keeps the problem going, too. For example: Most people think the biggest challenge in marriage is communication. So they work on learning how to communicate better. That’s helpful. Unfortunately, because communication isn’t the real problem, the real issue remains unresolved and often gets worse. This leads to even more conflicts within the couple.

Communication conflicts are just symptoms of a disconnected relationship. Here’s the real issue: The #1 cause of divorce and separation is a lack of connection.

When couples feel disconnected from each other, communication struggles, conflicts increase, intimacy fades, and the couple tends to walk on eggshells around each other feeling separate. Maybe you even love your partner but are no longer “in love” with them. Unfortunately, you can’t communicate your way back to being in love with your partner. Talk is cheap. Behaviors have to change in order for a couple to feel more connected with each other. Connection is like the glue that holds the relationship together. When you feel deeply connected with your partner, anything is solvable.   ​


RELATED: 8 Subtle Relationship Problems That Can Ruin Your Marriage

Here are 5 ways to help you restore connection, for when communication just isn't enough:

1. Stop trying to fix any problems in your relationship

Leave them alone for now, they're not going anywhere.

2. Work on restoring the feeling of connection with your partner by doing things that create a connection

Be present for them. Give your partner your full attention. Be light, fun, playful, and happy when you’re around them to the best of your ability.



RELATED: The 6 Deadly Sins Of Relationship Communication


3. Be affectionate, kind, and generous in meeting their needs

Be willing to give first. This is much easier to do when you aren’t focused on problems in the marriage.

4. Find ways to value your partner and show them your appreciation often

Let your partner know you're grateful for them, and how much value they bring to your life.



RELATED: 7 Rare Types Of Intimacy Only The Happiest Couples Have


5. Be the person you were in the most deeply connected phase of the marriage

How were you behaving when the chemistry was highest? Were you present with strength? Were you decisive, and pursuing, or were you heart-felt soft, open, and inviting? Be that version of you that attracted your partner with such success. As you know, feeling deeply connected as a couple is a very beautiful thing. That’s worth working on and sustaining. But it will not happen just by talking about it.

RELATED: 6 Tiny Things Your Marriage Must Have If You Want It To Last Forever

Jeff Forte is a marriage therapist and author of The 90-Minute Marriage Miracle. He has over 15 years of experience with some of Wall Street’s top investment firms, including extensive interpersonal conflict resolution experience as a regional team development leader.