Because Sweet Husband and I will be celebrating our second anniversary this month and because I feel like I talk about our relationship quite a bit, I’ve decided that at least for the next little while, my posts on Thursdays will be about marriage – some of the issues we face, the things that work for us, articles, perspectives, posts that I find useful in helping us create a stronger bond. Feel free to share what is working for you in your relationship as we spend some time focused on marriage.
This week I stumbled across this article about the factors that will predict whether a relationship will last or not. As I browsed through the list of both the factors that predict a successful relationship and those that aren’t such good predictors, I felt pretty secure in my relationship with Sweet Husband.
The five factors for relationship success are commitment, positive illusions, love, the inclusion of other in self, and network support.
Of those, I think the most interesting one is having positive illusions about your relationship – or believing that it is better than it really is. Apparently that practice can actually strengthen your relationship. I would assume that those positive illusions become something like a self-fulfilling prophecy. I know that there are small difficulties in my marriage with Sweet Husband. I also know that there are large difficulties. The truth of the matter is, though, that we have a strong, healthy relationship and the things that are difficult are bumps in a road. There’s nothing that is worth torpedoing each other over, and there’s nothing that we can’t overcome. Plus, I tend to believe that the things we give our attention to are the things that grow, and I have no desire to have the negative things grow. I’d much rather focus on all of the things that are going beautifully for us.
The other interesting thing in there is the network support. When Sweet Husband and I announced our engagement, there were people very close to us – including his brother and sister-in-law and a close friend of mine- who flat out told us that we shouldn’t be getting married and didn’t believe that we should get married. It was painful, and it marred what should have been a very happy time for us. To be honest, I don’t know know how Sweet Husband and his brother worked things out. I know that my friend and I had some very frank discussions and it came very close to creating a rift in our relationship. Those discussions also led to me realizing that I had to censor myself – that the only way I was going to win my friend over to supporting my relationship, to supporting Sweet Husband, was to present him in the best possible light. I think that’s been accomplished now. On the whole, I think that those around us do support our relationship.
As we approach our second anniversary, I feel very good about where we find ourselves, and I’m secure in our marriage. This article mentions commitment – that those who see themselves as committed to their relationship, that an end isn’t an option – are those that are happier and stay in their relationships longer. Duh. I’ve long said that I didn’t wait this long to get married to only get divorced. I do not intend for this marriage to end.
As you check in with your relationship or marriage, where do you stand? Are you in a good place?