Your Relationship Status Quo (RSQ) is the overall tone of your marriage. Unhappy. Happy. Bored. Lonely. Angry. All these and many more are possible states. In many marriages, the RSQ is a potentially damaging obstacle to a closer marriage because there’s pressure to maintain it, even if it’s bad. Why? Because any change, even good change, can be stressful. Patterns, even bad ones, are familiar. Even if we don’t like them, we just don’t know how to break out of them.
As a couples therapist I’ve witnessed couples who are stuck in a highly developed RSQ, with the dials set on unhappy. In my own 29-year marriage, we got stuck in a mutually non-rewarding RSQ, too.
RSQ is a powerful enforcer. Don’t rock the boat. Change will not be tolerated. Do the same stuff day in, day out, even if you hate it.
For some of us, RSQ translates into a silent scream for change that manifests itself in unhealthy ways: affairs, addiction, road rage, cyber-porn, depression, web affairs, and health issues are all symptoms.
Some of us just get use to low expectations, as if happiness and joy are only found in the movies and myth. Remember the film The Wizard of Oz? Can you picture Dorothy singing Somewhere Over The Rainbow surrounded by the rigorously dull routine of running a dust bowl farm?
The thing is, Dorothy found the meaning she was seeking right in her own backyard as so many of us can if we take some action. Do something positive to kick out the RSQ of today and begin to create a closer marriage, like the one we signed up for to begin with.
It comes down to this. To get break out of RSQ, you have to take a risk. To create a closer marriage, you have to make changes. But you know that already, or you wouldn’t be here.