5 steps that can help you grow if you are stuck in an unhappy marriage

Is it easier to leave or stay in a miserable marriage?

This morning my husband offered to place my car’s registration sticker on my vehicle. It seems like a nice gesture; however, it instead infuriated me.

Years ago, I pondered if I were ever on the verge of a heart attack, would the love of my life pick up the phone and call 911, or he would make his usual “What do you want me to do?” or “how is that my problem!” comment. 

Why would a partner who has declared themselves free of ever wanting to care for their spouse, offer to perform the simple task of placing a sticker on a vehicle! Thank you very much- I Got it, I will put that sticker on myself. 

So Why do some couples in similar situations, choose to endure their unhappy marriages, while for others it is effortless to end their marriage. 

 After some thought and readings, I must agree with Kelley and Thibaut’s interdependence theory. We always do a personal cost vs. benefit evaluation of our relationships and decide whether to stay or leave. As long as there are some benefits to staying in, couples suck it up and choose to stay.   


Many also stay together for the sake of their children. 

But what happens after the children grew and move out? Well, by than many think that it is just too late. People also become attached to their homes and do not want to walk away.

Whatever your reason to stay in an unhappy marriage is, here are some strategies to cope with the situation and ultimately find your happiness and independence.

  1. Start a journal. I started blogging. It could be something as simple as finding daily inspirational quotes or just free-associate and write. There is a magical power in being able to express our feelings and explore our psyche. https://www.recovery.org/pro/articles/journaling-as-an-aid-to-recovery/
  2. Make a list of daily reminders about who you are and what matters to “you.” It is essential to acknowledge that your partner has no power to label you. You are “you” and not his definition of “you.” https://lets-talk-about-life.blog/2020/04/23/a-note-plain-old-me/
  3. Create a new circle of friends that are not mutual to you both. This can be hard if you are not going out much or working. Fortunately, many android apps and websites can help us stay connected and explore new friendships. My favorite app is the Meetup app. You can download the app by clicking on this link.https://www.meetup.com/apps/ It is entirely free, and you can choose groups and activities that interest you. Voila’, you can now start your new social life.
  4. Self develops: This has always been a personal goal of mine. Whether it is your career, a hobby, or just personal growth, find ways to improve your skills. For me, it was my career, and as the children became older, I spend more time acquiring the needed skills to climb the ladder of career opportunity. You may decide to go back to school or even change or start a career. It is never too late. Use that negative energy to fuel a new happy life.
  5. Once in a while, try some of your usual activities, solo. Travel, road trip, going to restaurants, or movie theater are all occasions that will allow us to unplug and enjoy the moment. I have learned much during my solitude. I recommend trying a silent meditation retreat to hear your inner voice truly. 



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Akshay Iyer

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