I can’t even begin to share how often I have heard one spouse complain about the other in my coaching practice. They both feel unfulfilled in marriage in some way. The idea of marriage they had in their minds doesn’t align with the reality they are experiencing. It’s common to feel unfulfilled in your marriage at some point in time. One spouse will make a mistake or the other might feel as though they are giving more than they are receiving, and some couples find themselves stuck in this space, without resolution. In this article, we will tackle the topic: Feeling Unfulfilled? How to Balance a One-Sided Relationship.
Feeling Unfulfilled? How to Balance a One-Sided Relationship
In This Article:
Is Your Relationship One-Sided?
A one-sided relationship will wear a couple out. Things will eventually come to a head if the actions that exist in this type of marriage aren’t addressed early enough. Everyone wants to be happy and a marriage that does not contribute to each individual’s happiness will struggle. It is important to be aware of how your relationship fairs in this category of balance. Recognize if you are giving enough or if your spouse is giving too little, and be prepared to discuss what both you and your partner may need to ensure your relationship is more balanced.
There are also tell-tale signs in a marriage that reveal if a relationship is one-sided. For example, if there is one partner who continues to give and make sacrifices, while the other partner doesn’t do any of that; Or if there is one spouse who always has to break the disagreement silence first with an apology, whether they were responsible or not. Again, this will get old fast. Other ways to know are simply by paying attention to your partner and noticing if you are both at the same level of happiness. If one is not, it’s important to understand why and do what’s necessary to get your marriage back to a happy space. The “Happy Space” will differ by the couple, but it includes all the things that bring joy to the marriage and to each partner individually. At the end of the day, your marriage should feel good and it should add to your life. If you are struggling to get to that space, don’t worry, BMWK has got you with our tips on how to avoid being unfulfilled in marriage.
How to Balance a One-Sided Relationship
Take A Self-Inventory
Before you take an outside look at your spouse when it comes to a one-sided relationship, first take an inside look at yourself. In some instances, a relationship is one-sided because of what one might have been willing to accept. You may have been willing to be the one who always gives and doesn’t expect anything in return, and that is okay. But now, if it is beginning to wear on you just a little bit, it is also okay to discuss your needs too. A marriage involves two people, and both deserve to have it honor their needs. As you take your self-inventory, think about what you need now and why, but also be honest about why you showed up in your marriage the way you did initially. Is “giving” how you show love? Are you just a natural giver in all of your relationships? Is your primary goal to make your spouse happy? Do you feel like your needs should come last? And if so, why? Continue to ask yourself those tough questions until you are clear on who you are in your marriage so that you can better explain what you need to your partner. The funny thing about you feeling unfulfilled in marriage is that your partner might not have a clue about how you feel until you open up.
Talk About It
In order to balance a one-sided relationship, you have to take an honest look at your and your partner’s actions and behavior. What you do speaks so much louder than what you say. After taking your self-inventory and exploring your own actions, it’s now time to chat with your partner. So, together with your spouse, have an honest talk about your marriage. What you should look to discover is what’s working, what’s not, what’s missing, and what could be better. As you have this discussion, both of you should listen as the other partner is sharing. Do not interrupt or make excuses or justifications for anything that they share. Some of what they share may be difficult to hear, but it’s information you need in order to improve your marriage. After your partner has shared, you should share next and the same rules apply that include your partner just listening. You should share what you learned during your self-inventory and what you need now to begin to feel fulfilled in your marriage. In addition to sharing, be sure that you are also being solution-focused based on the feedback you give and receive. Ask your spouse to think about what they are willing to give in order to make this the best marriage possible for you and you share the same for what you are willing to do to make it the best marriage possible for your spouse. After the discussion, you and your spouse should have agreed upon actions you are willing to do for one another to avoid feeling unfulfilled in marriage. It is important that you hold one another accountable as it is easy to slip back into old habits. You both must be intentional about making sure the other feels fulfilled and the marriage is good to both of you.
Marriage is a lifetime investment. Whenever it begins to feel unfulfilling, it’s time to take action. Remember, you and your spouse don’t have to settle for a mediocre marriage. Together, you can make it a well-balanced union that brings you both a life of joy and happiness.
BMWK, how do you make sure your relationship is balanced and that both partners are happy? What tips would you suggest to avoid being unfulfilled in marriage?