COMMITMENT- Essential for a Fun, Healthy & Lasting Marriage

Alice: "This is impossible."
The Mad Hatter: "Only if you believe it is.”

As we broach the topic of commitment, we know that so many of you have experienced divorce as a child or personally as an adult. If so, most likely, divorce has caused you a great deal of pain. For that, we have deep compassion. No condemnation here.  

But still, let's discuss the concept of commitment. We have found some interesting statistics.

Most people already know that around 50 percent of marriages in the United States end in divorce. Here is how it breaks down:

  • 41 percent of first marriages end in divorce.
  • 60 percent of second marriages end in divorce.
  • 73 percent of third marriages end in divorce.

Divorce Facts

In America, there is one divorce approximately every 36 seconds*. 

The average length of a marriage that ends in divorce is eight years.

People wait an average of three years after a divorce to remarry (if they remarry at all).

The average age for couples going through their first divorce is 30 years old.

People who wait to marry until they are over the age of 25 are 24 percent less likely to get divorced.

Living together prior to getting married can increase the chance of getting divorced by as much as 40 percent.

If you've attended college, your risk of divorce decreases by 13 percent.

Divorce and Children Statistics

Half of all American children will witness the breakup of a parent's marriage. Of these children, close to half will also see the breakup of a parent's second marriage." (www.mckinleyirvin.com)

Bruce: Remember, like sports teams, we all have seasons where we play better than others. The same holds true for our marriages. You chose your spouse for a reason. Be patient. Keep remembering why you got married in the first place. I like the example set by the Pittsburgh Steelers football organization. They stick with their head coaches through thick and thin, unlike so many franchises that toss aside their coaches after a year or two. Each of the three Steelers coaches throughout history have had their share of losing seasons. But, they've each won at least one Super Bowl. There's gotta be a lesson learned there somewhere...

The bonds of matrimony are like any other bonds - they mature slowly - Peter De Vries

Try to get in touch with those feelings you had when you first began dating. Remember how much you liked him/her?? We have found that those feelings can be rekindled! When I was younger and very immature, there were times when I could really see myself walking away from the family. But, then a year or two later everything would get fantastic again. So, I would realize what I would have missed if I had walked away! How many couples have missed out on the chance to remember why they got married to someone in the first place?! 

Click this link to see our:

Romance Starters

Here is a another blog I wrote about my marriage with Tracy at a time I almost called it quits:

Love is something that we do. (click to read)

Tracy: My parents were really committed to staying married. I never believed they would break up, even when they might argue. My mom would say things like, "John L, if I didn't love you so much, I'd kill you!" Now, that was a little extreme. You would have to know my mom to know what she was really saying, which was, "I am not going anywhere." I found the fact that I knew it was normal to have conflict very comforting. Even better, I knew that a disagreement in no way threatened their commitment to each other.

Commitment is an act, not a word. Jean - Paul Sartre

There are a few specific circumstances that I would feel free to walk away from my marriage. 

It's true, in earlier days, Bruce really did consider leaving the marriage a couple of times. As a matter of fact, when we would have conflict (which he hated) in our early years, he would often, sadly say, "Maybe we aren't meant to be." I suppose I'm pretty tenacious. I would respond, "No...I don't even know what you're talking about. I am not going anywhere." Besides, at the core, I not only really love Bruce, I like him, and always have, even when he was being a butt. Lord knows, I am quite a handful myself. 

What counts in making a happy marriage is not so much how compatible you are, but how you deal with incompatibility - George Levinger

Too Legit to Quit (click)

Depending on your story, it often takes courage to walk through difficult times with your spouse.

More marriages might survive if the partners realized that sometimes the better comes after the worse. - Doug Larson

Here we are working out our marital frustrations in a pillow fight in New Orleans: FIGHT

What's interesting for us is that we have deeply grown into a mutually committed couple. It's for real. Love is ultimately the glue. When you sense someone's commitment towards you, it ushers in a level of peace, trust, relaxation, and comfort. You can be yourself, flaws and all, without fear of loss. All of that is a breeding ground for intimacy. 

We would love to know your thoughts on this subject. As a couple, we hope in some small way, sharing our insights on commitment is an encouragement to you. Our goal is that we can all move towards greater intimacy with the one we love... 

 

Bruce and Tracy Levinson - outsidethenest.net

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