- Lauren Dungy
- Shaunti Feldhahn
- Tim and Darcy Kimmel
- Betsy Landers
- Dr. Walt Larimore
- Mark Merrill
- Joanne Miller
- Dr. Gary J. Oliver
- Kathy Peel
- Dr. Greg Smalley
- Dr. Scott Turansky
- Jill Savage
Articles by Mark Merrill
- Top 10 Automatic Robo-Mom Replies to Avoid
- The Secret to Loving an Unlovable Spouse
- The Secret to Getting Your Kids to Obey You: Motive
- The Secret to Getting Your Kids to Obey You: Method
- The Secret to Getting Your Kids to Obey You: Be this Kind of Model
- The Meaning of True Love
- The Blessing FAQ's
- The Antidotes to Toxins of the Tongue in Marriage
- How to Create Boundaries for your Children
- A Sample Blessing for Your Child
- 8 Mistakes I've Made in Marriage
- 7 Ways to Have a Dream Marriage
- 7 Reasons I'm Not the Husband I Want to Be
- 7 Foundational Principles of Tried-and-True Discipline
- 5 Ways to Show Your Kids You Love and Validate Them
- 5 Ways to Prepare Your Children for the Unexpected
- 5 Toxins of the Tongue that Can Poison Your Marriage
- 5 Step Marriage Action Plan
- 5 Reasons Your Child Should Work
- 5 Reasons Why Your Teen is Rebelling
- 4 Ways to Know if You Will Benefit from Marriage Counseling
- 4 Ways to Give your Spouse your Freshest and Best
- 4 Ways to Compliment More
- 4 Truths for Your Marriage
- 4 Steps to Marriage CPR
- 4 Steps to Choosing a Good Marriage Counselor
- 4 Reasons Moms Need to be “Controlling” Parents
- 4 Foundational Principles of Discipline
- 4 C's That Can Spell Catastrophe in Your Marriage
- 3 Ways to Rebuild Trust in Your Marriage
- 3 Ways to Have a Team Mindset in Marriage
- 3 Things Your Children Need from You
- 3 Secrets for Beating Loneliness in Your Marriage
- 23 Things I've Learned in 23 Years of Marriage
- 12 Questions Moms Should Ask Themselves Every Day
- 10 Things Husbands Want to Hear from their Wives
Mark MerrillMark Merrill is the founder and president of Family First, a widely respected national non-profit organization dedicated to strengthening the family. read bio
4 Steps to Marriage CPR
When a person needs resuscitation, the signs are obvious. They stop breathing, they’re non-responsive. It’s easy to see that the person displaying these symptoms needs immediate help. In marriage, the symptoms that a relationship requires life-saving measures are sometimes difficult to detect. Couples learn to adapt and function despite their critical status. But functioning in a marriage is not what you and your spouse really want. You want to thrive. So, how can you bring a dying relationship back to life? It’s time to administer some marital CPR by doing four things.
First, be patient.
It took time for your relationship to need resuscitation; it will take time for it to get well again. Don’t expect overnight results when you start the process of reviving your marriage.
Second, be determined.
Choose to be committed to each other for life, no matter what, and work together with zeal to heal the relationship. Couples that have been married for 30, 40, 50 years or longer will all tell you the same thing. They agreed to work together, through any and every problem, period. For them, there was no other option. That determination to keep working through things together can pump life back into the heart of your marriage.
Third, forgive and accept forgiveness.
The failure to give or receive forgiveness accounts for many marriages that do not endure. Those simple words, "I was wrong, will you please forgive me?" can be strong enough to resuscitate a dying relationship. Giving forgiveness is hard at times. No question. But accepting forgiveness can be even more difficult, especially if you haven’t moved past the wrong you’ve committed.
Fourth, pursue truth.
Communicate openly and honestly. Being direct with your expectations, hurts and experiences, and working through them together is essential to rebuilding trust in a relationship. It will breathe new life into your marriage.
What have you done to revive your marriage? What worked? What didn’t? Share in the comments below.
© 2011 Mark Merrill. All rights reserved. Originally published at www.markmerrill.com.
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