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Compromise is Part of Marriage, but How Much is Too Much?

Everyone knows you can’t get your own way in a relationship. Compromise is an important part of all relationships especially in marriage. Your ideal partner is usually someone you can work with; you complement each other, and go together like peas and carrots. Like settling on a restaurant that isn’t your favorite because your partner has a craving for spicy food, or the style of sofa you purchase. But what happens when your partner takes over making all decisions? You can’t have a child or you’re not allowed to have friends over, or you begin feeling as though you have to suppress important parts of yourself to accommodate your partner?

When you feel as though you are giving up a significant part of your true self to keep the peace or stay together, you are on a dangerous path. You may begin feeling internal conflict, suffer from low self-worth, and become hostile and angry. This leads to a deterioration of you thus destroying your relationship.

Being able to discuss all things with your partner is important. Conflict and differences of opinion aren’t bad. In fact, they spark the relationship, making it feel more passionate and alive. A healthy relationship needs diversity, and if a couple never argues or stands up for their personal feelings they’ll become passive and the relationship will become stagnate and dull. This is unattractive to both men and women.

So how do you work together and compromise without going too far? My best advice is compromise on the everyday issues you need to resolve without selling out on your personal values and goals. Whose home you spend holidays with, where to eat and who does what chores are couple issues to negotiate, but the choice to have children, a career as well as other personal values are not. Listed below are issues most likely to cause relationship problems.

  1. The choice to have children. The discussion for whether or not you want children should be discussed prior to marriage and before you have a child. A child who lives with a resentful parent feels it for the rest of their life.

  2. Your opinions or feelings. You define who you are by your feelings as well as what you think about things. If you feel as though your feelings are unacceptable to your partner, you are in an unhealthy relationship.

  3. Your career. What you want to do in life is a personal mission. You may have to change your schedule, commute and approach, but you should be able to pursue a career you love.

  4. Your sense of being separate. You don’t become half a person when you’re married. In fact, a healthy marriage thrives with two interesting and individual people working together.

  5. Your goals and dreams. A healthy marriage promotes growth and change between both partners. In a very real sense, the marriage fuels your goals and dreams to help you make them happen.

Don’t fear conflict within your marriage, but do fear feelings of being forced to be someone you’re not. A healthy marriage is vibrant and alive which means it shares sass, laughter and burdens. Work it out with your heart, but don’t sell your soul to keep the peace.

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