Relationships

How Satan Is Stealing Your Marriage Without You Even Noticing

marriages

Somewhere in between the late nights, running errands after practice, overtime at the office for next year’s Disney trip, and squeezing in a quick WalMart trip for another Reading Fair project, you manage to squeeze in a date night. You sit at a dark booth, both of you with your heads in your phone, and you wonder when life will slow down.

Was it always this hard?! They say it’s easier after the kids leave home, but then you think of all your parent’s friends who got divorced once empty nesters. Did they run out of stuff to talk about? You can certainly relate. I mean, what’s there to discuss once the conversation doesn’t center around the children, where they’re going and what achievement they just won? What happened to people staying in love forever? Maybe true love doesn’t exist anymore.

Or perhaps we’ve just changed our investment strategies. Maybe our focus isn’t on our marriages. I think we’re too overwhelmed to feed into that relationship. We’ve become complacent in our comfortable life as roommates, partners in parenting, and financial assistant roles. We assume our marriage will thrive without watering, with plans to feed into it later. There’s just no time!

I wonder if we create our overloaded schedules? Is it our boss insisting we work late, or are we the cause? We can’t face our spouse that we forgot how to talk to. We can’t face another conversation about the kids’ future. The stress and worry is too much, and overtime seems like a pleasant option.

I wonder if we create our debt? We need 3000 square feet! We need a trip to the coast! We need a closet so packed the doors won’t close, and a cupboard so full of processed food we can make on the fly! We need Maui, a newer cell phone, and of course, more toys. Toys to keep the children entertained, but also toys to keep each other happy. It fills the silence, you know.

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We are so focused on raising the best children on the block. We are so focused on appearances. We are so focused on bigger, better, and more. We’ve gotten so good at being busy; we consider it a badge of honor. We’ve gotten so concerned with keeping up with what everyone else is doing.

We’ve gotten so used to being stressed out that we think it’s normal. We medicate with wine, and we overindulge in our favorite vices. We’re too tired for sex, too exhausted to just sit and talk. We keep waiting for life to slow down, never understanding that we set the pace.

Husbands and wives become opponents instead of teammates. Marriage becomes a contest to see who contributes the most to the family unit. We become bitter, expecting our spouse to give us a reprieve, even though we ourselves have created our own chaos.

Parents forget that children don’t come first! Kids plot parents against one another, having learned early on that we allow it. We spend thousands of dollars a year on things our children don’t need, and we invest even more in a college fund to the most prestigious university. Never once do we invest in our relationship with our spouse.

But date night, you say. We have that!

Ahh, yes, the two hours alone, where you’re both too exhausted from work to do much more than lift a heavy fork to your silent mouth. That sounds lovely.

We have removed fathers from the head of the family, and we’ve replaced them with our darling child. They rule the roost. We even joke about it on Facebook. Isn’t it so cute how sassy my little diva is?!

Brie Gowen
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Brie Gowen is a 30-something (sliding ever closer to 40-something) wife and mother. When she’s not loving on her hubby, chasing after the toddler or playing princess with her four-year-old, she enjoys cooking, reading and writing down her thoughts to share with others. Brie is also a huge lover of Jesus. She finds immense joy in the peace a relationship with her Savior provides, and she might just tell you about it sometime. She’d love for you to check out her blog at BrieGowen.com.

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