Sometimes marriage can be difficult. When you said your vows on the big day, you agreed to ride out the storms together. You knew things wouldn’t always be easy. But you probably didn’t know just how hard they could become. Until now, that is. Now you’re wondering if your marriage can even be saved.


You just want things to go back to the way they were all those years ago. That time when you were so in love you couldn’t think of anything better than spending your lives together. Now, you’re lucky if you can be in the same room without ignoring each other or fighting. And you’re seriously considering looking up the process of divorce in South Africa.


But that should be your last resort, especially if you have children. Before you end the partnership you thought would last a lifetime, you should at least try to save your marriage. So, if you find yourself in this situation, here are six things you can do that may help.


Look for the cause of the fighting

Take some time to seriously think about the arguments you have with your spouse and try to see where they all start. Often there’s a deeper issue that sparks all the arguments. Where is it all coming from? Do you work too much? Do they? Did one of you stop caring about the other’s feelings at some point? Or did you both stop caring? Do you not spend enough time with each other? Is one of you feeling unappreciated?


The two of you are not arguing for no reason. As silly as the fights may seem at the time, there is a root cause that you need to identify in order to work through it. Take some time to consider what you’re really angry about and ask your partner to do the same.


Make a list of everything that is hurting you

What have they done that’s hurt you lately? How have their actions affected you? Is it what they say that upsets you? Or is it the way they treat you in public or in front of the children? Don’t make this list out of anger. Rather consider what they do and how it makes you feel in a calm manner. Avoid making accusations or being hurtful yourself.


When you’re finished making this list, you can either give it to your spouse to read or talk to them about it in a relaxed environment. Just ask them not to interrupt you.


Spend some alone time together

You both have busy lives. Whether it’s a hectic job or raising the children, it’s not easy finding time to spend alone together. But if you want to save your marriage, you should set aside some time to spend with your partner. Sit with your spouse, go through your schedules and find a time when you can be together without the children or any other tasks on your mind.


Try plan this outside of the house. Go on a proper date at a restaurant or go for a hike. Whatever you choose to do, make sure you can talk to each other. There’s no point in going to watch a movie or show and spending time together when you can’t actually connect.


Try to remember all the things you love about your spouse

This may be difficult but there was a time when both of you couldn’t imagine life without each other. Take time out of your busy day to remember what you loved about your spouse. You may find that those things haven’t changed that much, it’s just that life became more hectic. But people do change, so take that into account and attempt to see the good in them now.


Think carefully about the way you speak to each other

The way you speak to each other matters. When you’re short with one another, fights start. If you choose your words wisely, you can communicate without raising your voices or irritating one another. If they say something that strikes a nerve, take a few breaths before you respond. Once you start speaking to each other in a more calm and pleasant manner, you’ll find it easier to communicate.


And if you have children, this is incredibly important because the fighting and arguing can seriously affect them. They love you both and want you to be happy, not just with them but with each other as well.


Consider couple’s counselling

This may seem like the first step towards signing divorce papers but it could actually be the answer to all your problems. Having someone else there to mediate the way you speak to each other and ask important questions can help you communicate more openly. A couple’s counsellor is a trained person who knows exactly how to create the safe space you need.

About The Author

I was born in the Eastern Cape, close to the waves. After getting my degree in Media, Communication and Culture, I knew it was time to make my way to a big city. Not wanting to leave the ocean, Cape Town was the natural choice for me. At first I thought the fast paced world of marketing. But I never forgot that what I'd always wanted to do was write. Now I'm a freelance writer, where my office is my bedroom and my platform is the World Wide Web. I live with my partner and our two beloved Great Danes. When not reading or writing you can probably find me on the beach or exploring nature trails.

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