Marriage issues can strike at any point in a relationship. Issues and concerns will wax and wane throughout a marriage and conflicts will change as a relationship grows. Issues that affect the newly marriage will be replaced by issues of parenting and learning to live together as a family. Even couples who have beat the odds and shared a long and happy marriage can find themselves struggling as life brings about changes. There are several common reasons to head to marriage counseling later in life:
Welcome to Retirement
After years of hard work, it is finally time to retire and spend time relaxing. While it sounds great on the surface, retirement can send relationships into a whirlwind of change. Hours normally spent apart are now spent together without a break. It is important to remember to not only embrace activities with a spouse or partner, but also to enjoy alone time.
Finding new activities, hobbies, and interests that can be enjoyed together with a spouse and/or friends and family and those that can be enjoyed alone can help redirect the time and energy that was once focused on work.
Living in an Empty Nest
Couples who have spent the past several years as parents may find themselves at odds once the last child grows up and moves out. They may find themselves suddenly without shared interests or things to talk about. Reconnecting with your partner on a romantic level instead of as parents may take some time but is well worth the effort.
When Medical Issues Strike
Changing roles may occur as the result of sudden or worsening medical conditions. Serious illnesses such as cancer, heart issues, or other chronic conditions can suddenly thrust a spouse into the role of caretaker. This change in relationship role and responsibility can be confusing and exhausting. It can lead to resentment and anger or the part of both spouses. Professional counseling can help couples worth through the stages of grief and come out better connected than ever before.
Downsizing a Budget
Retirement can put a dent into a once padded budget. The sudden loss of bonuses, overtime, and other extras may result in the need to tightening a budget or even downsizing to a smaller home. This may cause tension between couples who have different ideas of how their senior years should be spent. Financial planning and couples counseling can help put partners on the same page and budget.
Regardless of the reason for issues in a marriage, it is well worth the effort to seek the guidance of a professional couple's counselor to help put things into perspective.