“The vow, ‘till death do us part, is killing our marriages.” Sharon Pope
I know…I know….it’s blasphemy.
Divorce talk from a relationship coach? (Insert gasp here…)
But wait, there’s more blasphemy: I believe the vow ‘till death do us part’ is actually killing most marriages today.
When we were dating and courting one another, we were trying…
We reached out.
We showed up.
We appreciated one another.
We remained curious and asked questions.
We were open and vulnerable.
We didn’t carry as many expectations of one another.
We didn’t let resentments mount.
We had the hard conversations and didn’t consistently overlook bad and hurtful behavior.
Love, while not effortless, didn’t feel like the struggle it is today.
Then we got married and promised to remain together until death…(even if we’re miserable).
We put our relationship into a tidy, little box, place it on a shelf and begin pouring all of our love, energy and focus into our kids, our families, our careers, our homes… whatever was tugging at us the most.
Love will sustain the relationship, so I no longer have to…
We stop actively loving our partners.
We stop leaning-in.
We stopped sharing our hearts.
We avoided the difficult conversations so that we didn’t rock the boat.
We convinced ourselves that this is just how marriage was after a few years.
And then a few short decades later, we are shocked and confused when we feel incredibly distant from our partners and we’ve fallen out of love with them.
If we actually had to keep investing in the relationship in order to keep it, do you think we would have the divorce rates we do today?
Till death do us part.
Those five words are killing our marriages. We lock down our partners so they can’t leave and then we stop trying.
When divorce isn’t an option, we take one another for granted and stop trying. When divorce is always an option, we show-up in our lives and our marriages consistently – that is, if we want it to last.