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Smart marriages: Set yourself up for a smarter marriage by avoiding these classic mistakes

By Edited Jun 16, 2015 1 1

According to The Forest Institute of Professional Psychology in Springfield, Missouri 50% percent of first marriages, 67% of second and 74% of third marriages in the US end in divorce.



‘Shocking’ is somewhat of an understatement. There must be a fundamental problem in our attitude towards marriage for this to happen. Something clearly is not right.

Not ready for marriage

Many people are walking through life angry. Really angry. Or worse, not even aware that they are angry. They feel dissatisfied, with mild paranoia and some general confusion about who they are, what they value in themselves and in other people and what they want out of life. Rather than acting through their own beliefs and intentions they settle to just want what other people want.

This combined with social influences such as friends, music, films and the like leads people to seek a partner thinking that this person will ‘complete them’. This can only end in disaster.


Because they are using this person to fill a void within themselves and as such, are taking value – this is coming from a place of scarcity and desperateness rather than from a place of abundance and giving without expecting anything in return.

Whilst this phenomenon may not affect the relationship at the beginning so much as the self that is projected is easily controlled, and both parties are just having so much fun in each others company that they choose to not let it get to them. But eventually the bitterness they develop for eachother as a result of this will come to the surface. And they begin to resent eachother more and more until it ends in a divorce.

They then listen to some Coldplay and then bounce quickly into another relationship or marriage to fill that void again.

Tell me who to love

It may also be that the members of a couple are not really in love with each other but instead are in love with the concept of being in love. They want to be in love, but do not take enough thought to the type of person that they value, or if they do, it is unconsciously based on superficial socially conditioned values imposed by a fashion designer in Milan who decided that tall, brown haired, skinny women are in this season.


Extreme example, but it’s more true than many people in today’s society would perhaps admit to themselves. 

Co-dependency vs. Independence and Interdependence in marriage

Co-dependency: 0+0=0

Rather than being co-dependent on another person, what we must strive for is independence (or interdependence) first.

Independence: 1+1=2

Interdependence: 1+1=7

This is when there becomes so much to gain from a marriage or a long-term relationship.

Suggestions for setting yourself up for a smarter marriage

Be happy on your own first, find out who you are, work towards actualising goals you have set for yourself (that mean a lot to you personally), follow your own path, take risks, push your comfort zone, embarrass yourself, succeed, embarrass yourself more, go travelling, meet lots of people of the opposite sex, find out about them, learn from them, see what you value in them the most, have fun, enjoy life to the full on your own.

And then consider marriage.



Aug 2, 2012 6:04am
Interesting article, with some really good points. The move from independence to interdependence isn't an easy process, but certainly an important step as you say.
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