I got the answer wrong when the seminar presenter asked what the silent marriage killer was. Would you get it wrong?
Just after my wife and I got married, we attended a seminar on aiding the rehabilitation of human trafficking victims, particularly those trafficked for sex. (I won’t get into all that…that’s another story for another day.) In one of the presenter’s talks, he asked the audience what the silent marriage killer was and the biggest cause of divorce was. Since I had just been through premarital counseling, I pretty much felt like an expert at marriage. I shot my hand up quickly to answer the question, and blurted out, “Sex, money and communication!” …then looked at my wife next to me and grinned. Too easy.
“Wrong,” the presenter barked back. “Those are symptoms of the real problem.”
Ouch. Embarrassed much?
Not only was I given a sharp lesson in humility, but what followed changed my life. I was about to be told the best piece of marriage advice that this young, prideful, newly married man-boy could’ve ever asked for.
“The reason marriages end in divorce is because of one thing…unmet expectations.” That’s a silent marriage killer!
My newly married man-boy brain couldn’t handle the revelation. I don’t remember much of what was said after that. I was too busy thinking of all the unmet expectations I was already experiencing after being married a month.
Since that seminar six years ago, I have seen the pain and frustration that plays out from having unmet expectations, not just in marriage, but in all relationships. It’s a deadly venom that flows to the heart and wreaks havoc in relationships.