Have you ever overworked yourself and had sore muscles the next day? I’m sure you have. My oldest son experienced this in full force over the weekend. He went to a lock-in where he ran around for 11 straight hours….he was definitely feeling it by day number 2.
Since his muscles were so sore, I taught him how to stretch. Also, I tried to massage his muscles a few times. He kept pulling away from me every time I made him move or tried to rub his shoulders. It hurt!
Over and over, I kept telling him that he wanted relief from his sore muscles, he was going to have to embrace the pain of stretching and massaging. Yes, those things causes, pain, but also, would bring relief in the end. He just needed to endure the pain long enough for it to work.
Embrace the Pain in Your Marriage
It’s hard to embrace pain in our lives, no matter what type of pain it is. If we know something is going to hurt, it is natural to put it off and avoid it altogether. Some people even avoid pain that will lead to healing. They just limp along waiting for things to work itself out.
It’s time for you to embrace the pain you are experiencing in your marriage so that you can work towards healing. I know it is not comfortable or something that you want to do, but it is necessary.
Short Term Pains Leads to Long Term Healing
I tell my kids that they can either have the short term pain of healing, or they can deal with the long term pain of injury. If they will just push through what’s hurting them, they will get the relief they need.
The same thing happens in marriage. When something is hurting you in your relationship, you have one of two choices: you can either embrace the pain of addressing the issues, or avoid it and deal with festering wounds that never heal.
Have the Hard Conversations
There are some conversations that I genuinely dread. Just thinking about what I will have to say…admit to…accept…is overwhelming. I’ve been known to just limp along with the hurt of the wound rather than embracing the pain of healing.
It’s better to have those hard conversations sooner than later, though. The later you have them, the worse it will hurt. You can’t avoid the discomfort of healing any more than you can stop the pain of a wound.
Questions to Ask to Get the Hard Conversations Started
If you are ready to have the hard conversations necessary to start working through your hurts in marriage.
What to ask yourself
- What is bothering me about this situation?
- Is there anything I’m doing wrong?
- Am I being selfish?
- Is my attitude affecting the way I’m handling this?
- If I were my spouse, how would I view this issue?
- Have I prayed about the problem and sought counsel from wise sources?
What to do when your spouse has hurt you
- Be honest about your feelings, even if you think it will hurt them.
- Rephrase your problems if you feel they don’t understand you.
- Share the problem you have with them and ask them to help you come up with a solution.
- Listen to their side of things and try to understand their feelings.
- Don’t get defensive if they point out things you have done wrong in this situation.
- Accept that they may not change.
- Figure out what you will do if they continue exhibiting the hurtful behavior.
What to ask when you have hurt your spouse
- What can I do to make this situation right?
- Is there a compromise we can reach where we both make changes?
- Will you give me grace while I figure this out?
- How can I serve you better?
- Is there something I can do to make myself easier to live with?
These are just a few questions to get you started on working towards resolution.
Engage in The Painful Process of Healing
It is very difficult to have these conversations, especially if you have to have them over and over again…which you probably will. Just like sore muscles, you have to stretch them out and rub them over and over before the pain goes away.
In your relationship, don’t expect to have one painful conversation and that be the end of it. You will have to continue addressing the issue with one another. With each time you talk, work towards reaching a solution.
This means that you will have to keep embracing the pain in your marriage. While that doesn’t sound very promising, just know that those hard conversations are what will bring healing in your relationship.