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Stacey Chillemi

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When the romance diminishes, the relationship moves to a power struggle, and for a while, each person tries to change the other. Even though people mouth the words that they do not want to change the partner, they still try. It is a developmental stage, and if couples resolve it in a healthy way, they move into stability and long-term commitment. Marriages that blow up early have a romantic view, and once that has dissipated, they think the marriage is broken and cannot be fixed.




The Most Important Secrets

You Must Learn

In Order To Keep the Romance in the Relationship



Learn what you can do to recreate the romance in your relationship



When the romance diminishes, the relationship moves to a power struggle, and for a while, each person tries to change the other. Even though people mouth the words that they do not want to change the partner, they still try. It is a developmental stage, and if couples resolve it in a healthy way, they move into stability and long-term commitment. Marriages that blow up early have a romantic view, and once that has dissipated, they think the marriage is broken and cannot be fixed.


You need to compromise and share, some couples continue to lead separate lives after marriage or you will end up getting father away from each other emotionally. Couples should be friends and learn to work together. Try scheduling a special day each week to go out or do something special between the two of you.  No kids!  That is not a date that is work! This is time to share their lives and try to understand each other's worlds."


Love starts a relationship, and communication makes it grow into a good working relationship in which partners respect one another's differences. Many couples who do not make an effort to learn about each other. One newly married couple divorced over crumbs in the sink. He would go off on her if there were crumbs, and she could not stand it.


In studies it shows that an increase in the number of couples in trouble as early as the eighth month of marriage. "Often they'll say, 'I wish I'd known such-and-such.' People present their best selves before marriage, and they overlook serious issues, like alcohol abuse, that can destroy a marriage."


Far from ruining romance, talking openly and honestly fosters acceptance and deeper understanding which is essential if partners are to feel safe with one another. When you feel safe with someone you love, you will not find anybody prettier, richer, or more desirable.


Couples who claim, "We never fight" are missing an opportunity to build their relationship. "Its how couples handle the conflict that matters believe it or not. Do you run out of the room to avoid a fight? Can you repair the relationship? Do you talk your partner after a big fight? When people give up on each other, it is usually because they have stopped trying to resolve conflicts.


A study showed 95% couples would stay together if they work out their fights and not run away from them.  Communication is a big issue.


Positive behavior during a fight:

  • Nodding
  • Placing a hand on a shoulder


Negative behaviors during a fight:


  • Whining
  • Stern criticism


With successful couples, the ratio is five positive behaviors to one negative. What makes them successful is the ability to reduce the negative feelings.


Even good marriages will have criticism and defensiveness, but there is danger when people stonewall or feel contempt. If you hold someone in contempt, you do not think the problem can be resolved. Disrespect replaces hope.


Important lessons emerging from the research are different for men and women. Wives who stand toe-to-toe with their husbands and do not give in do well. However, when wives raise their tolerance levels, the marriage is doomed, because the husband makes a power play. Husbands who can calm themselves down and lower their anger are more likely to have happy marriages.


Long-lasting, happy marriages have more than great communication. Listening is an important factor," which involves rewording, supporting, acknowledging your spouse's feedback. Many people will fail at those techniques. Research indicates that most people who have trouble in their marriage that cannot resolve the issue and do not wish to try marriage therapy will fail.


Instead, you must be nice to your partner. Make small gestures, but make them often. "The little things matter. What a happy marriage is based on is deep friendship, knowing each other well, having mutual respect, knowing when it makes sense to try to work out an issue, when it is not solvable. Many kinds of issues simply are not solvable.


Learn how to identify issues that must be resolved, that can be "fruitfully discussed. Learn to live with the rest. Just put up with it. All you do is waste your breath and get angry over the things that cannot be changed. You are better off not trying to change them. Work around them. Commit to staying together, even though this is something you don't like."


A long-lasting, happy marriage is about knowing your partner, being supportive, and being nice. Research shows that, "for every one negative thing you do, there must be five positive things that balance it out research tells us. Make sure to balance the negatives with positives. Your marriage has to be heavily in favor of the positives."


While it sounds easy -- and while it can be easy -- this commitment to being nice is no small matter. "You have to do nice things often. However, it is harder to be nice when the heat is on, when you are angry, or when something has happened repeatedly. Nevertheless, the balance must be heavily based in the positive, to have a happy marriage.


In addition, couples must stay in touch with their special ways of repairing the relationship. It can be humor; it can be whatever helps diffuse the escalating heat. In happy marriages, couples naturally do this. They deflect the anger, and get back on an even keel.


It is true ; research has shown that couples in satisfying, happy marriages have more emotions that are positive in their interactions -- including discussions of problems.


Most marital conflicts do not ever get resolved.  There are always issues around in-laws, children. Solving the problems does not really matter. What is crucial is keeping things positive. You have to accept the other person's perspective, have an appropriate discussion without getting critical or blaming.




  • Men in good relationships do not react emotionally during conflicts. Men in bad relationships are more likely to withdraw from the discussion. They might actually leave the room, look at the ceiling, or tune out the conversation. Wives in negative relationships also get entrenched in their particular viewpoint and ultimately feel greater anger and contempt.


  • Your attitude toward your spouse plays out over the long haul. Couples that have good marriages retain their mutual respect and understanding of each other -- even during discussions of their differences -- will stay together much longer."


Most importantly, for a happy marriage, be committed to seeing your partner's perspective. "Have a willingness to understand, make changes in yourself, and find some method to get out of negative communication patterns -- negativity that just escalates. Sometimes that couple just cannot move forward.


Discussing conflicts while talking on the phone, rather than face to face. "That removes all nonverbal faces and body movements. She will not see him rolling his eyes and he will not see her sticking out her sticking out her tongue.  It keeps things more positive.


"Conflict is common, and a healthy dose of conflict is OK.  In a study done on couples for 16 years, they concluded that it is how you deal with it, which is what matters in a happy marriage. You have to fight fair. Stay calm. You cannot be at problem-solving best when you are angry. Come back to the situation when you are not, and you can have a completely new perspective.


For a happy marriage, here is how to deal with conflict:


  • Bring it up in a no threatening way. "Be nice. No name-calling.
  • Bring up specific issues or behaviors, rather than personality qualities. In a happy marriage, there is no attacking the person. Bring up the specific time, how you felt about it, then people can change the behavior. Otherwise, they don't know what to do about it, they're boxed in."


  • Instead of "you're a very messy person' say 'I'm really bothered when you put clothes on the floor." Such statements show how you feel about a specific behavior, and that is important in a happy marriage.


  • Try to stay calm. Studies show that the calmer you are, the more you will be taken seriously. "Take a breath, count to 10, breathe. Try to be no threatening."


  • Take a break. If you are going back and forth, if you find blood pressure going up, take minutes or seconds. Do not take hours. If you take too long, it festers in the other person, they have had time analyze it; you are dismissing their feelings opinions, dismissing them.


  • Do not bring it up at night. Choose the right time -- not when people are tired, hungry, when the kids are all around, when you have a deadline at work. Those are not the best times.


  • Consider your spouse's point of view, if you want a truly happy marriage. "I'm a true believer in this. Studies show that every single action has a different meaning depending on if you are male, female, your race, your background. That is important to remember in conflict resolution.


Repeatedly, that conflict is not important, that how you resolve conflict, how you handle it over the long haul, really is important to a happy marriage. Communication is very important in a successful marriage-- but you have to choose the right time.


Compromise is necessary in long-term relationships. "But each partner has to give-and-take. One cannot feel that they are making all the compromises. When one spouse makes all the compromises, it is uncomfortable for both -- not just the one giving in.


There will be times when you are making the compromises. However, there will be other times when your partner is making compromises. As long as in, the long-term things are moderation and you are both giving and taking, that is what is important.





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