This Article is About
highs and lows
roller coasters
troubled relationship
good listener
relationship problems
lack of communication
Ain't No Sunshine When She's Gone
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Ain\'t No Sunshine When She\'s Gone

Salvage a troubled relationship

Remember that great song by Bill Whithers? Ain't no sunshine when she's gone. He sang it with so much truth and so much passion. That's the way I feel when I'm just apart from my wife during the day at work. I can't imagine losing her or having major relationship problems. Sure, every relationship has trouble along the route, but what if your in a relationship that has it's issues and has so much passion with so much potential to succeed.

Relationships are often like roller coasters with their highs and lows. Let’s face it; at some point they all need some help. When we become involved with another person, we take it upon ourselves to be immersed in their lives. When things are great it can be like swimming together is a sea of chocolate and whipped cream. But other times, we might feel like a lobster, diving head first into boiling water.

Most of us can tell when things start to go wrong in a relationship. There may be a lack of communication, excessive hostility or just trying to avoid one another. Often people describe this as growing apart. When a relationship is worth saving, then every effort should be made sooner than later, before that separation is complete. So how does one salvage a troubled relationship?

First, it is vital to restore communications

Nothing positive will happen until both parties are openly conversing. Agree with your partner to sit down and talk somewhere free of distractions. Whether it’s at home or perhaps a friend’s house, try and find a neutral environment where you both are comfortable. Turn off the cell phones and leave the laptops so you can just focus on each other’s words.

Make sure and be a good listener

When you both sit down, have one person begin and the other just listens without interruption. It might be useful to have a small notebook so you can write down points that are important to you. When it’s your turn to speak, try and not be aggressive and place blame. In most cases of troubled relationships there is fault with both parties. Think about what you can do to make changes, not what your partner should do. Let them know what needs you have that are not being met, not to accuse, but simply to explain how you are feeling.

Consider involving a neutral third person or a counselor

So many people wait until a relationship is at the brink of failure before they consider counseling. Having a referee that will not take sides can significantly help you both focus on yourselves. Understand that no matter how badly you may want to do so, you cannot change your partner; you can only change yourself.

If seeing a professional is not an option, then consider another couple that you know. Make sure you are both OK with the choice, and the other couple is willing to help you. Many people feel like they are the only ones to have difficulties, and that is far from the truth. Another couple in a long term relationship may have been through what you are dealing with now.

Finally, don’t use the past as a weapon

Use it as a tool for improvement. Confronting your partner with their past failures is never helpful to a restoration. Try and avoid terms like “You always…” or “You never…” If something that your companion has done either past or present bothers you, express it in a positive way, for example:

If your partner does not pay attention to their grooming and appearance, don’t say “You never take care of yourself, so you must not love me!”

Instead try “How about you and I get cleaned up and go out and see a movie.” Include yourself as part of the solution.

This keeps the conversation positive and not an attack on them. You have the right to express how you feel, and so does your partner. Don’t assume they already know! They may not.

In conclusion

Watch for any warning signs that a relationship is headed the wrong way, and act early to improve it. Spend time to communicate with your partner and find out what needs you both have. Be a good listener, and get some help if you need it, sooner than later. Relationships can be tough, but with proper care they can last a lifetime.

Street Talk

I feel the same way when I am not with my wife Ken. All good advice.

  about 1 decade ago

Ken, Indeed, with proper care relationships can last a lifetime. Communication and caring matters! Good article. Wonderful picture match:-) blessings, Cynthia

  about 1 decade ago

Yes, I remember the song! A good one Ken! Relationships are definitely worth the effort. I miss my husband when he's at work too.

  about 1 decade ago
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