We have all consistently been given information on all that goes into building a healthy relationship. In this day and age couples should really have all the tools and resources needed to be successful in love. If they are not, the couple in the relationship is to blame. In addition to not following the recommendations offered, most individuals are set in their ways and unwilling to change or mature in regards to their relationship. Our childhood and past definitely play a significant role in the adults we’ve become. But with what we’ve learned along the way and what our spouses share with us about their relationship needs, should there really be any excuse when it comes to showing up like a grown up in our marriage?
Those of us who are parents are very familiar with the behavior our children display that quickly sends them straight to the punishment zone. So if a child can’t get away with it, what makes an adult think they can? It is time to take ownership of just how we show up and if there is room and a need for improvement, we must be (at the very least) willing to make changes.
If you recognize any of the below behaviors in your relationship, it is time to grow up.
Pouting when we don’t get our way. This shouldn’t even be an expectation. Our mindset should be focused on giving. There will be times things don’t go our way. No matter how much we beg and plead, certain things weren’t meant to be. With two people in a relationship both have to be satisfied. Coming to terms with the idea it’s not all about one individual is challenging for some but necessary for all. A one sided relationship becomes old really fast. The other spouse will eventually get tired of giving and never receiving. And we all know what happens when one gets tired.
Storming off. We expect children not to know how to handle their anger, but not adults. We’ve had years of practice and there should have been lessons learned along the way putting us in a better position to handle disappointment. Walking away when conversations get uncomfortable is not always the best way to handle a situation. Being a grown up means we have to deal with our emotions in a way that benefits us, our spouse but ultimately the marriage.
Shutting down. Not speaking for days on end after a blow up reminds me of me and my sister growing up. Whenever we were upset with one another, we would stop talking. Our goal would be to make the other jealous by creating new games or appearing to thoroughly enjoy ourselves in the hopes the other would want to play with us so badly they would start speaking to us first. Silly, right? But it made sense because we were children, but as an adult this behavior is neither cute nor funny. It is petty. How could we ever tell our children not to act this way if they see us behaving this way?
No sense of honest reasoning. Willing to do whatever is necessary to prove you are right including not being honest and cutting your spouse off if they are making a valid point are all huge integrity issues. Just think back to your childhood disagreements. It is funny when I think about it. It was important for us to save face and not look foolish in front of others if we were wrong. With children, reputation is everything. But in a grown up love relationship, sometimes pride has to be set aside. There are certain sacrifices we must be willing to make in order maintain a marriage filled with peace and joy. Admitting when we are wrong is one of them.
There were consequences for any of the actions above when we were children. And as you may have guessed they are even more serious as an adult. All of the behaviors above are the easy way to handle frustration, but being honest about our role in the situation and communicating effectively about the challenge are all signs that there are grown ups in the relationship.
BMWK, do you display childish behavior in your grown up relationship?
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