Marriage and Stress
Marriage is expected to be a wonderful union of two bodies, minds, and spirits coming together with the hope of unending expressions of love. Marriage has the potential to be an experience of profound happiness and bliss. It also has the ability to transform lives into perfect companionship, respect, and the building of wonderful families. This is the dream that usually precede the “I do’s,” the raising of the veil, and that first moment of sexual bliss.
However, even in the best managed marriage, stress can create havoc with its unwanted and overwhelming presence. Some degree of stress is needed in life to help keep us alert and productive. Stress can also motivate us to get things accomplished, help to reduce procrastination, and help us work towards achieving goals successfully. It is also important to note that too much stress can trigger negative downward spirals in in a marriage. Chronic stress has the ability in its affect to make couples feel that they are losing, or that they are inadequate to manage life. This is negative and false thinking, life is easier when stress is managed appropriately.
Ongoing negative stress can result in serious mental health and physiological problems. Chronic stress engages the sympathetic nervous system and triggers a fight, flight, or freeze response. This also causes the stress hormone cortisol to be activated mimicking the response of the body when is in danger. Uncontrolled stress can eventually lead to a weakening of the immune system, higher blood pressure, anxiety, and depression.
Too much stress can make a marriage one of the primary breeding grounds for overwhelming problems in one’s relationship. Marital stress can damage and derail the marriage relationship, increasing conflicts, and creating devastating results for the family. Early apprehension of troublesome, and negative signals triggered by excessive stress in a marriage relationship is vital. It can help to prevent the accumulation of negative factors that perpetuate a negative and destructive environment.
As the saying goes, “It’s the little foxes that spoil the grapes.” The accumulation of the seemingly minor issues of life over time, can lead to an overload of stress which will eventually lead to breakdowns within the marriage relationship.
To help avoid the possible breakdown of the marriage caused by too much stress, there are a few things one should include in their relationship checklist. Frequent checking and monitoring will help to stop the accumulation of stresses that if left unchecked can become uncontrollable.
1. How is the home environment? Check with your spouse to see if anything has crept in to negatively affect the peace and harmony of the relationship.
2. What is the state of our communication? How do we speak to each other, is it kind, or hostile, are we frequently annoyed with each other? Are we arguing and being verbally abusive?
3. Has the outside world invaded our space uncontrollably? Things such as the job, school, TV, negative friends and family.
4. How are we managing our finances? If it’s bad are we working to fix it.
5. What’s my love temperature? Do we still love and respect each other? Is our level of intimacy in a safe and secure place? Can you still get a hug when you need one?
6. How is my health and that of my spouse? Are we always feeling tired, uninvolved, and noncaring?
7. Is there a fair distribution of chores? Am I always feeling overwhelmed?
8. Are certain lifestyle habits creating more stress?
9. Have we taken any vacation or get away time lately?
10. It there are children, are they doing well?
The list above represents only a sample of the things that can create an overstressed marriage relationship. Take some time with your spouse to do a checklist of your own, because your marriage relationship is unique to you. A marriage relationship is supposed to be one of the healthiest human relationships. It enhances longevity, and good physical and mental health. It lowers the risks of certain diseases, and is one of the most supportive, and caring unions. Marriage relationships where diligent attention is given to reducing stress, can result in developing the intimacy and friendship that make life the happy experience that you hoped for. Before the pain of stress begin to take a life draining hold on the marriage relationship, seek help to relieve the grip of stress that can hinder the positive outcomes that are desirable.