Conflict Series: Conflict During the Three Stages of Marriage (Part 5)

Conflict usually is minimal during the first stage of a marriage, which is the honeymoon period. Honeymoon literally refers to a “sweet month.” It marks the period from one stage of the moon to the next time that stage of the moon occurs. In a marriage, the honeymoon period is the period of sweetness and kindness between two spouses, a time when all things seem new and fresh and exciting—about thirty days.

The next stage of a marriage, however, is often called the disillusionment period—when illusions about the person you have married disappear. A woman thinks she has married Ozzie Nelson, and he turns out to be Homer Simpson. A man thinks he has married the girl of his dreams and awakens to hard, glaring reality.

After the disillusionment period comes the wonderful and long-enduring phase of commitment, when you discover your mate fully and, at the same time, commit to loving your mate in a biblical manner for the rest of your days.

Both the disillusionment and the commitment phases are going to be marked by conflict, and since they are by far the longer periods of time for a marriage, partners are wise to anticipate these periods prior to their wedding and set their minds and hearts to enduring the disillusionment period in anticipation of the commitment phase. At the same time, refuse to shy away from conflict during your dating, courtship, and engagement periods. Keep your discussions and conversations lively. Don’t “stuff” your emotions in fear that you will damage your relationship. Learn to fight fair.

My Question For You:

What are your expectations about conflict in your dating or marriage relationship? Are you disillusioned or prepared to work through conflict?

My Challenge For You:

Think about the three stages of marriage. If you are married, which one are you in and are you handling conflict correctly? If you are single, are you confronting conflict in your relationships as you date?

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