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Times are Tough-How Can I Support My Partner?
Keeping Your Family First
When times are difficult whether because of money, health, time shortage, drought, conflict, or any other problem, it is easy to take frustrations out on those you love the most. All too often, an individual's spouse and immediate family take the brunt of anger, depression, sadness, disappointment, tiredness, fear, or erratic mood swings. Before things get out of control with the way you treat your partner or family you will want to do a self-check. This means that it is important to know why you are feeling the way you're feeling. What is the cause of your stress? How is this stressor affecting your partner relationship? Are you having conflict over a problem? Are you feeling out of control? Do you have misplaced anger? Hopefully, you have a relationship where you can talk about 'tough' or 'touchy' issues with your partner. Together the two of you should be able to resolve some of the major issues or at least agree to disagree when you cannot find a solution or compromise. In some cases, professional counseling may help couples recognize their major issues and learn problem-solving skills to enhance the partner relationship.
Realize that your significant partner relationship must be nurtured. This is a person you don't want to take for granted. This relationship must be cared for as you care for anything else that is important to you. It takes time, love, commitment, forgiveness, respect, sexual connection, effective communication, and lots more. Throughout your daily lives together, you can decide how to treat each other and whether that will be with love and mutual respect. When you invest time and energy into your partner relationship you are helping yourself, your partner, your family, and everyone else around you. Healthy couples help make healthy families and communities.
- Dr. Kathy Bosch, Extension Family Life Specialist, University of Nebraska Panhandle Research & Extension Center
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