It seemed the Summit was dead. But now they’re “on” again. Trump turned it around. Can he do the same for his marriage? Can you? Relationships expert Mort Fertel enlightens.
Q: What’s the connection between the Summit negotiations and marriage?
A: The lesson here is that things in relationships change. People use terms like “dead” or “irreconcilable” to describe a broken marriage as if it’s permanent. In relationships there’s no such thing as permanent; we’re always in a state of flux.
Q: What do you mean a state of flux?
A: How I treat you today has more impact on how we feel about each other than our entire relationship history. It could be we’ve been in love for years, but if I betray you today that feeling of love will be gone.
Q: Does the same hold true on the upside?
A: Yes, but the process takes more time. It could be that we’ve been at each other’s throats for years, but if I extend to you a random act of kindness today, it’ll warm things between us. The reconciliation process has begun. You’ll be hesitant to open your heart, but I will have succeeded to move the needle.
Q: But what if my spouse doesn’t reciprocate? What do I do then?
A: Lead, don’t follow. We should never treat someone the way they treat us; we should treat them the way we want them to treat us. That’s how you lead a marriage in a new direction.