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Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Why lack of space can be unhealthy for a marriage

Psychologists say that when we try and get too involved in our partners’ lives, then we also end up curtailing their freedom and space.

Written by Amrita Sharma | New Delhi | Published: June 8, 2015 2:53:08 pm
One of the most common grievances I have heard from couples is that their partner does not give them the space they need (Source: Thinkstock Images) One of the most common grievances I have heard from couples is that their partner does not give them the space they need (Source: Thinkstock Images)

One of the most common grievances I have heard from couples is that their partner does not give them the space they need. Most partners I have spoken to said they felt stifled in their marriage and in the company of their partners.

“Has it always been like that between you two?” I couldn’t help asking. And what they told me made me sigh in despair.

It was ironic that most of these couples had fallen in love with their partners because of certain qualities that they admired and valued – most important being their independent spirit and the ability to be in control.

But the moment they got married, things changed – and all because one partner wanted to change the other or control the other.

Psychologists say that when we try and get too involved in our partners’ lives, then we also end up curtailing their freedom and space.

For most couples, the concept of “we” and “our” becomes so pronounced that they forget they were once “I” and “mine” and were happy with that. For many individuals, this is not something that they had bargained for.

Take the case of Rhea and Suraj. Before they got married, they had a large group of friends and they loved to socialize, go out, travel and party.

But when they got married, life suddenly became a different ball game.

“Rhea suddenly wanted to know where I was going, who I was going out with, when I will be back and so on and so forth. Initially I put it down to love and the fact that she wanted to spend more time with me, but I realised that she was just being controlling,” says Suraj.

Counsellors say that most people confuse togetherness with dependence. What they don’t realise is that while the former is healthy, too much of the latter can be unhealthy. Any relationship needs space for people to breathe; and in a marriage, which is one of the most intimate relationships, if there is no space, then it’s sure to be detrimental to your relationship.

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