I grew up confused about marriage. The rampant physical and emotional abuse tore my soul apart as a child. I vowed not to have the kind of marriage that I experienced growing up with my mom and dad so I dreamt dreams. I read books and drifted towards fantasy land. The reality of all that I became in the many growing up years knocked me into the reality of all the hard work that would be required to make a real marriage work. I realised along this journey that once upon a time, marriages were about fairy tale endings of happily ever after. Lately, the fairy tale is getting the diamond ring, the perfect boo or babe for photo ops and the real time social media stream of love affairs. Wedding planners are making humongous trades on these wedding ceremonies that often seem to last longer than the marriage itself. From the proposal drama to the actual “I dos,” everything seem to be streamlined and choreographed with extreme precision. So when the anti-climax of reality beckons in making the everyday living as man and wife is experienced, very little are couples prepared. Matter of fact, the existing baggage that most couples bring into their union, which were hitherto left by the way side during the planning of the weddings start to almost rear their ugly heads in the first few months of marriages. Add that to the only traditional expectation we allow ourselves in these unions- the bringing forth of a child almost immediately after wedlock… And you have a catastrophe that melts not just two persons but an innocent child that for years to come believes that’s just the way marriages are. And the cycle continues. Many a marriage expert have said that the most trying period of most marriages is the first three to four years. For some, it may be more. Most couples today appear to have hidden baggage, some they realize, some they don’t. The fact remains, these issues are brought on by childhood experiences, upbringing, significant emotional experiences, and societal expectations- some real, others imagined. But until a couple, who are willing to walk and work towards happily-ever-after prepare to unravel these mysteries in their experiences and come to a conclusion of a unified destination, we will continue to experience marital meltdowns.
The wedding industry is a rip off. It makes a lot of money at the expense of the marriage industry. A lot of young people jumping around displaying engagement rings and not enough engagement with or really getting to know their single partners. Merely engaging with social media and showing off nice pictures of ephemeral bliss. Imbibing values from the West whose meaning and origin we do not fully understand if at all we do. I have been advocating that psychiatrist and psychological evaluation before weddings be made compulsory for a while now to my clients and our NLP classes for many reasons. In fact, this will empower more marriages in addition to those existing pre-marital counseling and HIV tests. If not, we will merely keep enriching wedding planners, photographers, cake and dress designers, makeup, hair and beauty professionals and event centers. Meanwhile people in pain and despair need to see and experience our humanity and empathy NOT our mockery and “I told you so.”
Many unresolved emotional issues have led to breakdown in communication, hurt and pain which Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP), psychotherapy, and pre-marital counseling provide avenues to unravel where individuals are in their own self before they become part of an entity of marital bond. Because without understanding you as an individual, you can never come close to accepting another as a part of you. Without understanding what the other person is dealing with, you are unlikely to know what you would realistically be expected to cope or help with later on within the marriage relationship. There’s often so much more than meets the eye later on in every break up, more often than not, no-one is really to blame. Except the willingness to go through discovery before the wedding bells sing. But if we are to pay more attention to the unit we are forming and the lives unborn, we would be affecting beyond the immediate chemistry and glitz of social media and societal acceptance, we will begin to come to the realization of just how important the individual essence is in the formation of a larger society. But really, how do you see your whole self without a mirror? So how do you understand your person without professional help. We all play a part in making this happen; from the society, to the families and the individuals involved. It is our collective responsibility to ensure we know where the unit is headed for the greater good of the larger society or what we will continue to breed are dysfunctional families bringing up unbalanced individuals. And the cycle never ends.
Many people out there are not really ready for the institution of marriage. They either have unresolved issues or use marriage as an escape or a coping place that they run to when many other aspects of career, finances, emotions, and interpersonal relationships are not working. Some people simply run to a relationship or a marriage to hide or find succor. Such folks carry all earlier manifested or learned dysfunctionality into the marriage or relationship. While we others may get high on alcohol, hard drugs or marijuana, certain persons use marriage as a source of getting their own high to cover for previously unattended inadequacies and dysfunction. I am an observer. I do not consider myself a marriage or relationship expert. I simply observe certain patterns with the individuals and couples that I work with. In the next few days I intend to unveil these patterns so that it that add to the discourse in this “happily ever after” matter. I hope that you will also follow closely and leave your observations and comments.
INNOCENT USAR is a Lifestyle Coach, Master Practitioner and Trainer of Neuro – Linguistics Programming. He travels the length and breathe of Nigeria helping individuals, organisations and people of faith to easily break away from fearful as well as other acquired self – limiting patterns
Mobile and Whatsapp: 08032005725
BBM Pin: 58A660D2