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I was wondering if people could share their experiences regarding really stressful/rocky periods in their partnerships or marriages and how they were eventually able to get through them and return to a fairly happy coexistence. My partner and I have been having a really rough time for about the past six months. Multiple stresses including having to make major job/relocation decisions, young children and more are going on right now and it is starting to feel hard to remember how wonderful and how in love with this person I was. We starting going to counseling, which is helping, but I guess I'm looking for any words of encouragement that lousy periods happen and it's possible to get through them.
What did we do? We went away for a weekend by ourselves. Got the kids, cats and dogs squared away with friends, relatives and neighbors so that there was NOTHING to think about back home and spend Friday night through Sunday afternoon in a wonderful cottage on Tomales Bay.
You don't have to travel far around here to feel like you are 100's of miles away. We were able to talk about EVERYTHING that had been bothering us about each other, about our lives, figure out ways to work together. The important thing was for me to tell him how I felt without making it ''it's all your fault''. So, in a non-accusing, ''lets work this out together'' way. That weekend put a spark back into our relationship. I can't say it's been magical since then but it gave us back a connection with each other that we had lost. Good luck. anon
What my husband and I have done is set up a weekly ''date night''. We have a standing time with a sitter for a couple of hours on a week night. It's not associated with any specific event or activity aside from just grabbing a bite to eat. Its a great time to extend a conversation or thought that has come up in therapy, talk about schedules, catch up on personal news, gossip about the neighbors :-), what ever. What's important is that it is uninterrupted and unstructured time with just your partner.
Sometimes we go to nice resturants, sometime we just get sandwiches and sit on a bench somewhere. Sometimes all we do is talk about the kids or our schedules (which are very demanding) but sometimes we have a lot of laughs or end up in deep philisophical discussion about things.
You may not be able to do this specific thing but its an example of a way to keep the communication flowing with your partner, which I think is paramount to keeping your relationship in tact and meaningful. good luck
In retrospect the stresses between us, associated with a dissertation, a 2 year-old and two jobs, in addition to everything else put us in a high risk category. We got back together, conciously choosing to stay married ''for good''. We have had good times and some bad ones, and are blessed with two more children who would not exist if we hadn't gotten back together. We have been married for 23.5 years now, more than half our lives! I cannot picture a world in which the two of us aren't together.
Bad times aren't always the end of a good (or o.k.) relationship -- sometimes they are just part of the way to a better relationship.
Good luck, follow your heart -- whether you stay in or get out, there is a better time ahead of you. Anonymous on Behalf of my First/Last Husband
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