This paper investigates theories and concepts on what can help make a marriage successful and uses personal experiences to help illustrate these concepts. The first concept is successful communication in marriage. It is argued that if couples do not set aside time to discuss issues in their marriage, then problems will arise between the two individuals. Proper communication between partners will ensure that the true feelings of each partner can be fully understood. When a couple can truly understand each other’s feelings through constant and open communication, only then can they work together to solve their problems. Another important concept that can help make relationships successful is the appreciation of gender roles within a marriage. Gender roles are helpful as they lay out responsibilities and boundaries for each individual and when a couple understands their individual boundaries and responsibilities arguments can be avoided. However, strict adherence to gender roles can also cause problems within a marriage. For example, if one partner is away at work and cannot make dinner (which was their assigned responsibility via gender roles), then it is important that the other partner helps by performing this duty instead and vice versa. In this way, allowing responsibilities that come with gender roles to be flexible, greater efficiency and productivity can be achieved in a marriage, which makes it more successful. The final concept presented is effective problem solving skills. This means that couples come together and come up with strategies and compromises to solve their problems. Effective problem solving is important for a successful marriage because often problems in a marriage arise from fundamental differences in the personalities of the two individuals. Problems that arise from difference in personality can never truly be ‘solved,’ however effective problems solving skills can lead to the couple agreeing on compromises which allows the issues to be tolerated with little effect on the overall happiness of the couple.
Three Important Concepts of Marriage
Concrete Experience Abstract
A successful, happy, and long lasting marriage is something everyone desires, and yet achieving it can be difficult. The legal act of marriage results in the couple changing from two individual people into a unit, a partnership, a team. This paper will present three researched strategies which couples can employ to help make their marriage more successful. These strategies are effective communication, the understanding of gender roles, and the identification and implementation of problem solving strategies. A long-lasting union can only be achieved through successful communication. Successful communication is not only understanding verbal communications, but also understanding the physical communication or body language of your partner. Although effective communication is more important than gender roles, gender roles are still useful in a successful marriage as they help establish boundaries and responsibilities for both partners and this can solve many common marital problems. The last strategy important for a successful marriage is problem solving skills. It is impossible to be in a marriage and not have problems with your partner, as humans are imperfect beings by nature. Therefore, it is not a question of whether problems will occur, but how the couple will deal with these problems and move past them. Even if the two partners have different problem solving strategies, the ability for the couple to come together and work together to solve them is essential for a long-lasting marriage. The following paragraphs will discuss the three important strategies stated for a successful marriage and will relate personal experience to those researched strategies. From personal experience, marriage is often easy in the beginning. When two people first fall in love they have very little problems, but this never lasts for long. However, through successful communication, the understanding of roles, and successful problem solving these problems will get better over time.
Every couple communicates, however the extent to which these communication events are successful at portraying the actual feelings and experiences of the two-people involved is key for communication to be effective. Without effective communication in a marriage, the couple will have difficulty understanding what they might be doing right or wrong in regards to their marriage. One useful strategy for creating successful communications is to set aside time every day for the partners to exchange ideas, discuss events, and make plans. For example, my partner and I set aside time to talk in the afternoons when we both get home for work, or before we go to bed. This time to talk gives us a chance to reconnect, discuss any issues, organize schedules, discuss plans for chores, duties, or anything else that might come up. Once couples begin to communicate regularly, they often find that most of their problems were a result of difference of opinion. Communication will help to resolve these different opinions and consolidate them into plans of action. Another important aspect of successful communication is the ability to be honest with the partner, even if it involves difficult emotional topics. For example, in my marriage, my wife and I disagree over which one of us is responsible for preparing meals. I found out after speaking with my wife that she hates to cook and does not believe that this job or responsibility should be only performed by her, she wants me as the husband to help with meal preparation. However, from my perspective, I always considered meal preparation to be the job of the female in a marriage and so her ability to perform this role is important to me. This example represents a difference in opinion, and involves a sensitive topic that can be difficult for us to talk about. However, in my marriage, we found a compromise; my wife agreed to cook at least three days out of the week, and I agreed to help the other days. The ability for us to compromise in our marriage demonstrates the importance of communication. Since we could communication our concerns, talk, and come up with a solution that worked for both of us, we are both much happier. [“Write my essay for me?” Get help here.]
The Importance of Gender Roles
In terms of gender roles, when the roles of each partner are clear in a marriage it makes it much easier for the couple to accomplish tasks, goals, and responsibilities as a team. For example, the wife might work part-time and handle tasks related to raising children. Whereas the husband may be considered the ‘head’ of the house-hold and act as the provider and main ‘bread-winner’ for the family. If both partners agree on what is expected from them, any combination of these tasks or roles is possible. For example, I the husband am not knowledgeable or skilled at fixing things in the house, building things, or doing maintenance. Normally, this sort of work is performed by the male, but since I am unable to do these sorts of tasks, I do my best to help my wife complete her tasks such as washing the dishes, walking the dog, or watching the kids. So, even though gender roles are important for a successful marriage as they allow for better understanding between the two partners about their relative responsibilities in the marriage, strict adherence to these roles can cause problems. Overall, it is not so much the roles that are important to a successful marriage, but it is the fair delegation of all tasks and responsibilities in the partnership. The ability for a couple to help each other, especially in areas where one partner might experience weakness or need extra support due to long work hours or extra school work, is essential for a functioning partnership.
Gender roles in a marriage and successful communication are related concepts and can be used in conjunction with each other to effectively solve problems. To demonstrate this point, consider how marriage partners might expect different gestures of love from their partner. If these specific gestures that they expect are not performed by the partner, it can lead to feelings of under appreciation and this will cause problems in the marriage. For example, during one of the discussions I had with my partner, she expressed to me that she felt I was not romantic enough in our marriage. At first, I didn’t understand my wife’s concern. I thought that if I performed my role as the provider in our marriage, by making sure she had enough resources to meet her needs, that this was enough for her to feel happy. However, after she discussed with me how she felt, I realized that romantic gestures were important to her, she needed to feel loved and appreciated in this way. Thus, I now make an extra effort to surprise her with flowers when she gets home or take her out on special dates. I also take time out to go with her to the spa and do things that we enjoy together. I feel like my efforts have helped build the romance between us and have helped her feel more appreciated, loved, and wanted. Just as my wife expressed her issues to me, I explained to her that it would help me feel loved and wanted if she expressed more gratitude for my contributions to the household. I told her that it was important to me to receive praise from her occasionally for my accomplishments at work, or when I help around the house. For example, when I can get our baby to fall asleep without her help, I would appreciate it if she recognized and encouraged this behaviour. Through our discussions, we both realized that feedback is important. My wife needs feedback in the form of romantic gestures to help her feel loved and I need feedback in the form of praise and encouragement so I know if my actions are helpful or if I need to adjust.
The Importance of Problem Solving
A book titled The five love languages, by Garry Chapman, presents and explains the various ways that people give and receive love to or from their partners. The book does an excellent job of helping partners understand how their individual love languages might differ from each other; and with an understanding of how each other’s love languages differ comes a better ability to address those differences and make both partners feel appreciated. As Chapman writes, “We discover the primary love languages of our spouse, and we choose to speak it whether it is natural for us” (Chapman, 2010 p.138). If love is understood to be a language, a form of communication, then it becomes clear that even if two partners are exchanging words, without a true understanding of the meaning or feelings behind those words, successful communication cannot occur between the couple. Montgomery discusses this concept of communication in his article. Montgomery argues that communication depends equally on the capacity of a spouse to both send and receive communicational cues (Montgomery, 1981).
Traditional gender roles in marriages have been established through human history, but these roles are changing in modern society and it is important for couples to realize this. In my marriage, I perform the role of the main ‘breadwinner,’ and in this sense my marriage is traditional. In an internet article by Neumann from the website Psycology, he discusses how traditionally men will spend more time with the kids and the women will generally spend more time doing household chores like decoration (Neumann, 2013). I find Neumann’s concept holds true in my experience as I often spend more time playing with our kids while my wife spends more time decorating the house. However, my marriage can be considered non-traditional in the sense that both my wife and I contribute financially to the household. Although, society would still designate myself as the as the head of the household since my financial contribution is much greater than my wife’s, even though we both contribute. Despite the difference in the quantity of our financial contributions, we still handle the household finances jointly. My wife and I made the decision together to handle finances jointly and this represents a deviation from the stereotypical household dynamics normally expected in society (where the man is in charge of the finances). Strict adherence or expectations of gender roles that stem from traditional marriage structures can cause severe problems within a marriage. For example, in the article written by Biddle in the Huffington Post, he discusses how “the demise of [his] marriage began when she started making more money than him” (Biddle, 2011). For Biddle, his wife earning more money than him threatened his role in the marriage, and this is what lead to its demise. Therefore, it is important to realize that although gender roles and traditions are important, it is also important to be flexible as sometimes situations change and partners may end up diverting away from traditional roles, and this can often be an asset to a successful marriage. [Click Essay Writer to order your essay]
A successful marriage can be difficult to achieve, but practicing proper communication, understanding roles, and the utilization of effective problem solving techniques will all significantly improve the quality of any marriage. At the beginning of our marriage, my wife and I never took the time to communicate with each other and this lead to many problems. These problems began to have a significant impact on our happiness in marriage. However, once we both came up with personalized ways of addressing these problems, our marriage began to improve. We effectively improved our communication by addressing problems as they occurred, instead of neglecting them. One strategy that my wife and I found useful for improving communication was to set aside distractions like the kids, cell phones or social media for example, so that we could truly focus on our issues and come up with solutions. Another strategy we used to improve communication was to ask for clarification, confirmation, or assurance about the content of the communication to make sure we both understood what we expected from each other. The use of these strategies helped us solve many of our issues. However, we have also concluded that some of our problems are rooted in difference in character, and therefore can never truly be resolved; this concept is one presented by in Gottman’s book The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work, he argues that many disagreements are rooted in fundamental differences in lifestyle, personality, or values between the two partners (Gottman & Silver, 1999). Every marriage has problems, this is something everyone must accept, it is how the couple can move past these problems and continue to improve how they relate to each other that will result in a long-term, happy, and successful marriage. [Need an essay writing service? Find help here.]
Biddle, T. (2011, November 17). How changing gender roles are affecting marriages.
Chapman, G. D. (2010). The five love languages: The secret to love that lasts. Chicago: Northfield Publishing.
Gottman, J., & Silver, N. (1999). The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work. Crown Publisher Imprint (Three Rivers Press).
Montgomery, B. M. (1981). The Form and Function of quality communication in marriage. National Council on Family Relation, 30, 21-30.
Neumann, F. (2013). Changing Gender Roles In Marriage.