Marriage is one the fundamental institutions of any society in the world. It plays an irreplaceable role which has been respected by humanity throughout history. Based on this fact, marriage is acceptable in almost every part of the world with many countries having formulated legislation which is aimed at giving guidelines with regard to issues like age of marriage, divorce and separation among others. It is the desire of almost everybody to get married. However, there are varying reasons which compel a person to get married. These reasons having been found to be key in determining the stability of a particular marriage. For instance, is a person gets married because of temporal push and pull factors, they get exposed to extreme ends which may result into unhappy or failed marriages. As a result, marriage counselors recommend premarital counseling for better decision making (Myjoyonline). With millions of people getting married annually, statistical research conversely indicate an increasing trend in the number of failing marriages, separation and divorce. This paper explores causes and effects of failed marriages and some possible solutions in the current society.
What is marriage? With the upcoming of same sex marriages, the definition of marriage has begun to get new meaning. However, since time in memorial, marriage has been viewed as the holy matrimonial joining of a man and husband as a wife and husband. They are characterized by several activities which include but not limited to weddings, celebration and fun. Marriage is an allowed practice globally with some communities condemning the idea of people remaining single. Religious people like Christians and Muslims believe that marriage was ordained by God and deserves uncompromised respect throughout. They have gone ahead to have laws which govern the relationship between a husband and wife with unfaithfulness being unlawful, warranting divorce. It is believed that marriage should be respected by the two parties involved throughout their lifetime. In deed a successful and happy marriage is a source of joy and growth. On the other hand, there are millions of people who see no harm in terminating a marriage after a few days or months due to inability to respect marriage vows. Although many unworkable marriages lead to separation or divorce, there are numerous marriages which have failed in spite of the two couples living together under the same roof.
Why would a happy wedding lead to a failed marriage? Is marriage about tolerance or love? Is it possible to avoid marriage failure? These and many others make up a list of controversial questions which have always surrounded causes, effects and solutions of failed marriages. Is marriage a “free-entry-free exit” exit? Definitely no. The pain associated with failed marriages makes it a cause of alarm and concern in the society. There is every need of dealing with the issue the salvage the society from what has become a norm, marriage failure (Robinson 94). To clearly underscore this, the root cause has to be well comprehended to the formulation of a way forward. It has to be double emphasized that failed marriages have a plethora of effects some of which turn out to be permanent.
As mentioned above, there are various causes, effects and possible solutions of failed marriages. To completely cover this concept, the research seeks to answer the following questions:
- What are the causes of failed marriages?
- What effects do failed marriages have?
- Are there solutions to failed marriages?
Failing of marriages does not occur in the twenty first century alone. Research indicates that countless marriages have failed in the history of man and this will continue being witnessed as long as the fundamental causes are not addressed and curbed. Causes of failed marriages range from socio cultural to economical factors (Mooney, Knox and Schacht 187). Consequently these failed institutions result into divorce and separation among other fatal effects. As a result, there has been rising concern over the best way of dealing increasing number of failed marriages. According to research findings, marriage has to be respected by everybody with premarital counseling being recommended in order to psychologically prepare those planning for marriage.
The main parties involved in any marriage, husband and wife, play a mega role in making or destroying a marriage. This is to say that the failing of almost every marriage is caused directly or indirectly by the couples. Whether it is love, greed or lust that brought them together, they have every recommended tool necessary to augment a happy lasting marriage. With other factor considered, existing differences between a man and woman have considerable significance. Many marriages fail when the gap between the two begins to grow towards extreme levels when communication breaks down or diminishes (Clarke-Stewart and Brentano 221). No marriage has ever survived without proper communication which many marriage experts describe as the number one attribute of marriage. The starting point of a failing marriage is when good communication stops. Many people have always assumed that communication only concerns speaking to one another. The truth is the “how” information is shared between a wife and husband confirms communication level. Lack of communication eliminates the existence of having interest in each others happiness which is important in keeping the relationship at a thriving pace. Losing interest in your wife or husband is a clear indication of a failing marriage. Although communication is prevalent in marriage, many people have not been able to understand the best way to communicate with loved ones. This leads to misunderstanding due to unresolved differences resulting in the erosion of marriage cohesion.
Another cause of failed marriages is financial crisis. It is clear that the society promotes materialism through various ways like TV shows and adverts. As a result, many people fail to set their financial priorities right. There is increased demand for luxury and materialism which opens the channel for financial crisis and stress. How can one manage luxury and needs? In a world characterized by countless bills ranging from rent, food to medication, a knock of financial stain at the door is automatic. This strain may lead to accumulation of debts due to living beyond limits, loss of priorities, health problems resulting from stress and ultimate crumble of marriage. Other people have also blamed manhood crisis as one of the causes of failing marriages (Clarke-Stewart and Brentano 221). The current breed of men are does not fully understand what it means to a responsible husband allowing women to take leadership roles which are meant for their husbands. Lack of understanding marriage roles among couples result in “parent-child” dynamic which lead to marriage disaster.
Lack of commitment between men and women is also another cause of failed marriages. This is usually caused by diversion of interest to other activities like career, hobbies and other addiction. This trend gives the relationship no chance for growth leading to conflicts leading to breakdown. Many people argue that unclear marriage reasons further make married people to lack commitment (Hager 59). Young people who rush into marriage because of external pressure like greed, emotional influence or peer pressure are likely to experience failed marriages than any other class of people. This phenomenon has also led to infidelity which is not permitted in almost every marriage set up. When a marriage is faced with all or some of these factor, survival chances get minimized leading strain, stress and finally to the breaking point.
Are there effects of failed marriages? Since it is the desire of many people who get married to live happy and experience a successful marriage. It is clear that failed marriages are a major cause of pain and stress among millions of people around the world. How many people die of failed marriage related cases? Research affirms that due to stress caused by unsuccessful marriages, many victims have fallen victims of suicide leading to lose of life. Another effect of failed marriages is an increase in the number of divorce and separation cases. It has been argued that the rate at which people wed is almost equal to the divorce rate. With almost divorce cases resulting from failed marriages, the truth of the matter is that these scenarios arise due to unworkable marriages. It is also important to note that divorce has adverse effects to affected family members with children being more vulnerable than any other member of the society. Millions of children find themselves in eternal pain and psychological suffering caused by their conflicting parents. As a result of separation or divorce, simple parenthood becomes a norm, posing severe challenges to every member of the family (Robinson 94). Based on religious grounds, failed marriages was not the original purpose of man and woman being united. It therefore completely defeats the purpose of marriage. It is therefore important to find lasting solutions to deal with increasing cases of failed marriages.
There are many ways of dealing with failed marriages. It has been found out that premarital counseling is very important in sustaining marriages. This allows those preparing to get married to be psychologically ready for what may lie ahead in their marriage. Counseling also makes a wife and husband to be to understand their differences and weaknesses at an early stage (Mugume 112). Such awareness is vital and relevant in dealing which conflicts resulting from career choices, talents, personality and interests among others. Counseling further allows people to understand the purpose of marriage. As discussed above, lack of a clear understanding with regard to the need for marriage is a cause of countless failed marriages. With this understanding, early decisions are crucial in avoiding breakdown of families. Additionally, post-marital counseling is one of the solutions of dealing with failed marriages. It is of significant importance for married people to understand that the success of any marriage begins with the two parties, husband and wife (Eckenwiler 24). Therefore, their acceptance of who they are is essential in nurturing a marriage. Above all, good communication in marriage has to double emphasized since it augments cohesion and overall understanding. It is through communication that wife and husband develop interest in each others happiness which a key ingredient for a successful marriage.