Successful marriages rarely just happen. Instead, most require years of hard work and frequent regrouping along the way. However, for every marriage that ultimately succeeds, there are many that will fail. In fact, according to statistics provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), divorces and annulments for the calendar year 2012 numbered approximately 851,000, or a rate of 3.4 percent per 1000 of the total population, while total marriages in the same period numbered slightly more than 2.1 million or 6.8 percent per 1000 of the total population.
Communication Issues are a Common Cause of Marriage Problems
While the list of grievances in most any troubled relationship is likely to have numerous entries, issues concerning communication are usually near the top of these lists. Therefore, finding a way to address just this one area of your relationship can be a good way for couples to start to rebuild their relationship and stave off divorce.
Communication issues often develop soon after the marriage begins as children and careers have to be nurtured and mortgages and utility bills have to be paid. Unlike the long, heartfelt conversations that take place during the courtship, spouses involved in a failing marriage may have trouble remembering the last real conversation they shared. In many cases, the most often spoken words revolve around work schedules, children's needs and deciding who should remember to stop at the store for milk.
Reserve Time as a Couple
To rebuild communication and rekindle mutual interest in each other, it is often helpful to begin by scheduling a weekly date night for just the two of you. Make sure both spouses put this weekly time into their calendars and book childcare in advance to eliminate last minute problems that can lead to attempts to cancel.
Expect the first few dates to be somewhat awkward, much as your first real date might have been, as you renew the friendship and respect you once shared. Choose locations such as a quiet coffee shop or restaurant where you will be forced to focus on each other. Avoid locations where it will be easy to avoid real conversation, such as movie theaters and concerts until you are once again able to enjoy each other's company.
When Renewing the Relationship Fails
Not all marriages will respond to this type of rehabilitation process, especially when one or both spouses have already moved ahead with their own life. In this is the case in your relationship, each spouse should consider consulting with a reputable divorce lawyer who can help them work toward dissolving the marriage as amicably as possible.