Remember when you first started dating and every conversation was fun, and flirtations, and made you feel special? You probably weren’t thinking back then that you would ever find yourselves where you are today in your marriage. It might feel like anything you say is heard as a criticism. And you may try with the best of intentions to listen to each other and talk things through, only to have the conversation blow up again anyways. And every time you try and fail to connect you feel more discouraged about your relationship.
It is not uncommon for couples locked in negative patterns of communication to feel all of these things. We end up believing that it is impossible to turn all the negativity around and start fresh again. That’s a really tough place for a marriage to be. The person that used to be your best friend and your safe place now suddenly feels like an adversary. And living life in defense mode is so draining of your time and energy and enthusiasm. Many couples contact me and say that they have tried everything they can to work together but they seem to get sucked right back into the same arguments and power struggles that never go anywhere. I agree that this is a terrible way to live life and I don’t want you to feel stuck in such a rut for even a moment longer.