I have a friend who is having marital problems. She deals with the problems by stonewalling. She refuses to cooperate with her husband in finding solutions to the problems. She rebuffs any attempt he makes at discussing the problems by leaving the house. This woman is always going shopping or running down to the local Farmer's Market to pick up some fresh vegetables. She is busy doing everything she can think of except participating in communication with her husband over the marital problems.
In other words, her actions are pushing him closer and closer to filing for divorce. In my opinion, stonewalling is the number one reason marriages end up in divorce court. People like my friend who refuses to engage in authentic and heartfelt discussion with their spouse are passively destroying the relationship.
Nothing is more frustrating than tying to work through a problem with a spouse who refuses to work with you. I can say this due to my own personal experience. Marriage comes with a certain amount of conflict and if you are not willing to engage in the conflict...in a fair and civil manner, you should not expect your marriage to survive. Better yet, you should not be surprised when your marriage fails.
My friend, she will be surprised. She will be surprised because in her mind she is doing herself and her husband a favor by stonewalling. She has this skewed belief that the less fighting the healthier the marriage. She believes that problems ignored disappear on their own. Is she ever going to be surprised when she finally learns that problems ignored only grow into problems that can only be solved in divorce court.
What did you do the last time your spouse came to you with a problem? Did you grab your car keys and leave him/her alone to deal? Or, did you give your marriage and your spouse the respect they deserve and engage in a little authentic, heartfelt discussion?
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