In my coaching practice, I come across clients all of the time that are in conflict and need help with their blended family issues. Most of the time, their frustrations simply come from the choices that they are deciding to make or not to make which end up causing most of the hardship in their relationships. For example, in remarriage, the biggest problem I come across with my clients is the issue of discipline. 9 times out of 10 the clients cannot agree, and they refuse to agree to disagree on this issue. Resentment builds in one or both parties, the issue continues to be swept under the rug and by choosing to not to get on the same page, they are ultimately making a choice that may end up ruining or eventually ending their marriage.
Let’s talk about why choice plays such an important role in our relationships. We have to understand that as life partners we always have a choice in how we live in our relationships. With that, we may not always like our choices but part of being life partners is knowing that as we make these unavoidable choices we open certain other possibilities and we close the door on others. For example, if we make the choice to allow our children or stepchildren to run the household, disrespect our spouse and never come to an agreement on the rules and what behaviors will and will not be tolerated in our household, then we close the door to trust and communication with our spouse. We have to choose to handle these situations not just to ensure that our relationships stay sound but to help our children as well.
I once read that choice follows awareness. Teaching our children this is so important. The most effective way to teach them this is by example. Every time we make a choice for our families as a couple, whether good or bad, it will produce a consequence. When we hold that we choose what happens in our relationships it is only then that we take full ownership over them.
TMF Readers, remember, marriage is a marathon not a sprint. In our relationships and through our family issues, when you find yourself not seeing the difference between your choices and you are finding it easy to make your spouse “wrong” instead of holding yourself to the fact that you made a choice too, your relationship will suffer. Realizing that our individual choices play a role as well in our issues is key. Take time to communicate to your spouse the choices you two are making individually and as a couple which affect your relationship. Having this awareness will give you power and you will avoid taking the easy way out but will make room for more open communication and togetherness.
Peace & Blessings,