More than 50 percent of marriages end in divorce due to various reasons: incompatibility, betrayal, substance abuse, attachment problems, faulty communication. Many people lacked role models of healthy long-term love
and commitment growing up. When couples are committed to creating a healthy relationship, old wounds can be healed and new ways of relating can be learned. The following are traits, behaviors and attitudes of healthy and secure couples.
• have “come to terms” with their past and are able to fully invest in the relationship.
• are able to balance togetherness and autonomy, dependence and independence.
• can trust and rely on one another; be a “secure base” for each other. Seek and enjoy intimacy without being afraid of closeness.
• have good communication and problem-solving skills; are respectful and constructive when talking about conflicts and disagreements. Able to share thoughts and feelings in an open, honest and caring way, and listen with empathy and understanding.
• do not become defensive, angry, critical, or aggressive when their partner shares feelings or gives feedback; apologize for wrongdoings.
• share power and control; are a partnership between equals.
• meet one another’s needs for security, support, affection and love. Partners feel safe and sheltered – mind, body, spirit.
• both take responsibility for their own part in problems and solutions: no blaming, avoiding, or stonewalling. Divorce is more common among couples who have a pattern of angry accusations followed by avoidance and emotional distance.
• keep the relationship alive, vital, and a priority; spend time, have fun, show love regularly.
• use self-control; do not take out stress and frustration on their partner.
• resolve problems; continue to repair grievances and wounds so hurts do not grow into big resentments. Forgive one another for mistakes and hurtful actions, and practice self-forgiveness.
• adapt successfully to changes and challenges, such as having children; form a united team in raising children.
• are both comfortable with closeness; do not take part in destructive
dynamics, such as “pursue–distance” pattern. People in high-conflict marriages are 10 times more likely to have depression and other health problems.
• share basic values, interests, and moral codes of behavior.