5 Ways to Divorce-Proof Your Marriage, According to Relationship Expert Esther Perel
Let's face it: "For the rich or for the poor, in sickness and health, as long as we both live" is much easier said than done. Just ask the 40 to 50 percent of married couples who get divorced in the United States. That's why we're looking for advice from our favorite Belgian psychotherapist, Esther Perel, host of the seriously addictive Where should we start? Podcast and author of the books Mating in Captivity and State of Things: Rethinking Infidelity. Present five ways Esther approved to strengthen your marriage.
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1. Don't rely on your partner for everything
Your husband is your favorite person in the world to meet with. It's also reliable (who else would rub your feet for an hour while eating your favorite ice cream - which they picked up in the shop?). But Esther Perel suggests taking this path carefully. If you rely too much on your unique piece, this can put your relationship under unnecessary pressure that it may not be able to withstand. "Today we turn to one person to convey what an entire village once did: a feeling of grounding, meaning and continuity," says Perel in her book "Mating in Captivity". “At the same time, we expect our committed relationships to be romantic, emotional, and sexually fulfilling. Is it any wonder that so many relationships break down under the weight of it all? “Keep an identity outside of your partner and spend time with your friends and family separately. If you want to see Booksmart and your husband is not sure, go to work with your friends. "Allow yourself to feel your partner's otherness more deeply," writes Perel. "You never really own yourself. You just think you are doing it. "Whoa, deep.
2. Shake things whenever you can (especially in bed)
Anyone who has been married for more than a few years can tell you: it is extremely difficult to maintain this exciting first spark when you are comfortable in a relationship. And Perel suspects that the conflict between love and desire is at stake. "Love enjoys knowing everything about you. Desire takes puzzles, ”she writes in Mating in Captivity. “When intimacy grows through repetition and familiarity, eroticism is numbed through repetition. It lives on the mysterious, the novel and the unexpected. Love is about having; Desire is about want. An expression of longing and desire requires constant evasiveness. It's less about where it has been than about where it can go. But too often, when couples settle in to the comfort of love, they stop lighting the flame of desire. They forget that fire needs air. “So do something very spontaneous. Surprise your wife by restoring the sexual fantasy she mentioned when you first date each other. Buy sexy new underwear. Try a new sex position. It doesn't matter what it is as long as it is brand new.
3. Apologize first
If you're there in the long run, even the best relationship has a fair share of nightly struggles, screaming matches and disagreements. The most important thing according to Perel? That you don't wait for the other person to say "I'm sorry" no matter whose fault it was. "To apologize - there is nothing weak about it," Perel writes. "Whoever apologizes first is always the strongest."
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4. If your definition of "love" evolves, don't panic
If you love someone, you always agree with them and worship everything about them, don't you? Nah. Perel claims that love is much more complicated. "It's a verb," Perel says to The New Yorker. "That's the first thing. It's an active engagement with all kinds of feelings - positive and primitive and heinous. But it's a very active verb. And it's often surprising how it is." It is like the moon. We think he has disappeared and suddenly he reappears. It is not a permanent state of enthusiasm. “Your love for your partner will probably feel very different after the fourth month of marriage than after the 12th year. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.
5. Stop comparing your relationship with that of others
Your old college friend just got married and her wedding looked perfect (on Instagram) and she seems so happy (on Facebook). In the meantime, you're behind on bills and your toddler keeps screaming and your husband has been playing Fortnite for three hours. Pooh. The best way to start your relationship again? Stop calling. "If everything else fails, leave social media for a few days ... or weeks," Esther told Cosmopolitan. “Free time will help you realize that striving to be someone else is a frustrating experience. Instead, focus on being the best version of yourself and staying in the here and now of your own life. "Easier said than done, Esther, but accepted the challenge.
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