Once upon a time, the seven-year-itch was a thing, now it appears that the seven-year itch has been replaced by the two-year itch. Or to be precise, 2 years and 9 months! This is the point that, statistically, marriages lose their “spark”. Sadly, we see that over 50% of marriages now end in divorce, and no matter how many tips you find online to spice up your marriage, address the communication problems you may have, or just how many more hours you are working than the average person 20 years ago, is there a way to fight back against this two-year itch? And is it something that isn’t to do with us as a couple, but it’s actually to do with us as individuals?
What Are Our Modern Hangups?
Arguably, we are burdened with more anxieties than previous generations. Because we’ve got such unprecedented access to other people’s lives now, we’ve got a front-row seat at how much better everybody is doing than us, thanks to things like Facebook. We know deep down that it’s just the edited highlights, but when you see other couples at a posh restaurant, albeit taking pictures of their food, you can’t help but feel a little twinge of jealousy that you’re not doing that right now. This is more about the social need than anything, but it’s a modern epidemic that’s affecting every single one of us.
Is “Phubbing” Really To Blame?
A combination of the words “phone” and “snubbing,” this has been highlighted as a cause of the decrease of quality couple time now. And following on from the fact that we have access to other people’s lives in such a complete way, our mind begins to focus more on the grass being greener on the other side. We know that this isn’t the case, but we are spending more time living in a fantasy world rather than the real one. It’s far easier for us to keep tabs on our exes and we spend more time longing for things that we can’t have. This is known as an emotional affair. This is something that isn’t widely discussed, but it’s as bad as a real one, to an extent. And with the internet providing infinite entertainment, why should we even spend time talking to our partners? It’s so easy for us to keep tabs on people we find attractive online, and this is a very dangerous territory. You could search for signs your ex still loves you, and in your mind, you may have already had an emotional affair. So does this mean that in the age of social media and phubbing that we don’t spend enough quality time with our partners anymore? It’s hardly a surprise that marriages don’t last as long as they used to, especially if we have the option to play away in our minds, even though we don’t actively go through with it.
Are We Too Sedentary To Care?
A lot has been spoken about attractiveness and the weight gain we are all prone to as we age. But now, in the modern age, we are struggling more with our diet than ever before. One of the biggest passion killers is weight gain or lack of exercise, and as soon as we settle into a marriage pattern where we are relaxed around one another, and cozy up in front of the TV, naturally, the chocolates and snacks will continue to burrow their way into our lives. Are we so sedentary now that the important issues, like passion and communication, have gone out the window? When we look at getting in shape, we are always full of good intentions at the very outset, but life gets in the way. But, when you think about the fact that we work so many hours now, we crave these home comforts. And when we feel we deserve these sweet treats after a long hard day, it can be a very slippery slope to obesity and other health issues. This means that a lack of passion isn’t far behind! Passion is one of those things that appears to disintegrate in every marriage. Of course, this is a very grand statement, but because we are so sedentary now, we aren’t making the effort to bring passion back into our lives. Our desire to always take the easy way out and get the quick solution to what ails us leaves us in a state of unwillingness to put the effort into making our marriage thrive. Instead of dieting and exercising, we want a quick weight loss pill. Instead of carving out time for date night, we expect we are going to have those same tingling feelings in our relationship that we had when we first met.
Look at yourself and ask yourself, is this the best version of you that you want to be? Remember, exercising helps create endorphins, which is a feel-good hormone. You feel good, you will transfer this into your marriage.
Do We Even Trust Our Partners Anymore?
Trust is the bedrock of a successful marriage, and now, as we spend physically less time together, it can breed mistrust over the years. Do we even trust our partners anymore? Movies and sitcoms portray couples keeping secrets and playing mind games with each other. This doesn’t help our overall perception of what a healthy marriage actually looks like! If we don’t communicate with each other via the traditional methods, but instead opt for spending time on our smartphones, or working long hours, it’s hardly a surprise that trust begins to disappear. You need to ask yourself if you do trust your partner. And if you don’t, then why is this? Is it something that can be easily fixed? The two-year itch is real, but the overriding issue of why it exists is a lack of care. If we don’t care for partners, we won’t trust them. Resentment is going to ride high, and emotions aren’t going to grow. And this isn’t a new thing, but we’ve definitely got more distractions in the world now to make sure that we don’t necessarily have to have a proper conversation with our partner ever again!
So, if you want to fight back against the two-year itch, and you find yourself heading down that slippery slope, the solutions are very simple. Spend more time with your partner, get off your phone, talk to them, in other words, be more human! You can save your marriage, but you need to address the things you do every day that are holding you back. You can even consider marriage counseling if things are getting really tricky. Ask a local church for recommendations. Divorce isn’t a new concept, but it’s so common now, that clearly, some trappings of the modern world are responsible. Look at what’s in your life, and if you really care about your marriage, then it’s time to make some sacrifices.