Not every marriage or every second of a marriage can feel like a happily ever after from the moment you say, ‘I do’. The pressures of married life, relationship dynamics and fleeting love can make one feel like they are in a dysfunctional marriage.
Whether you have stopped texting each other all about your day when you’re at work, or don’t seem to have sex anymore or have incessantly long fights with each other every other night, you could be in a marriage that is on the rocks.
What Is A Dysfunctional Marriage?
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A happy marriage is one where there is plenty of understanding, commitment, love and openness. Of course, even in the happiest of marriages, not everyday is perfect and there is a fair share of arguments, conflicts and hurt.
However, a dysfunctional marriage definition is far from that. In a dysfunctional marriage, the very core values of commitment, understanding and communication are eroded. Whether this is done over time, or these are values one never actually cultivated in their relationship, a dysfunctional marriage can take a toll on you as a person and as a partner. Read the following incident to understand the theory of a dysfunctional relationship even better.
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Dysfunctional Marital Conflicts
It was 2.30 a.m. when her call came, vibrating under me as I lay in bed. My husband was lying on top of me. He said the call was a mere accident, but I knew it was not true. He said he didn’t even know her well. But a picture of her, with her flowing hair, a nose ring and black aviators remained etched in my memory as he quenched his lust.
My husband was drunk and I didn’t want him to go on an argumentative spree or even turn violent. I remained quiet and faked calm like I always did. Our dysfunctional love was not news to me. Little did he know, a storm was raging inside me.
I have had anger management issues and had been advised to practice deep breathing techniques and that is exactly what I started doing when my husband started his rant. He wanted to prove to the world that it was my overtly emotional personality that was the problem.
Thus started the blame game in our dysfunctional relationship
My husband’s rant lasted a while.
“I never had a problem when you returned from parties at 3am in the morning.”
-You didn’t take me or bring me back, you had asked me to do it alone.
“Two of your male friends had called you at night as well.”
I’d just like to point out that it was one call that happened eight years ago. A friend was fighting a suicidal urge and had reached out to me, knowing I was an insomniac. Another happened a few years ago, from a colleague. We had a presentation the next morning and he needed to finalize the project plan and my approval was necessary.
“Your ex who dumped you is a jerk. He is ugly too,” my husband continued.
-That guy was not even my ex. I’d liked him. It didn’t work out then. Plus, how a person looks is totally immaterial for me; it’s the heart that matters.
“You are fussing and fighting, you bitch. You are a maniac. A sociopath.”
The incident had made me sad and I was quiet. I hadn’t spoken a word, I was just listening to my husband.
“Your brothers are show-offs and stupid.”
One of my younger brothers is a successful doctor. He performs 7-8 surgeries a day. The other came first in his board exams. My husband is jealous and always attacks them – my pillars of strength.
“Your father is a sleazy man. He is a pervert who has had many affairs.”
I have been scarred by my parents’ dysfunctional adulterous marriage and I had shared my sadness with my husband. Did my father’s history legitimize my husband’s midnight or daytime ‘harmless’ flirtations?
Well, these are not even flirtations, technically, I guess. But we know and understand, when lines are crossed, don’t we?
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Lack of healthy communication
I slapped him furiously and he quietened down for a minute or two. I often needed to hit him to quieten him or else he said many, many hurtful things to me endlessly. He never hit me directly in our dysfunctional marriage, though.
It was not just her, the girl with a nose ring. I had often seen my husband become “extra comfortable” with my single friends, becoming a shoulder for them to cry on. And those women friends of mine eventually became jealous of me for having such a ‘nice guy’, when in reality they had no clue about the toxic love and dysfunction in this household.
I have no clue what my story is about, except that I’m an extremely strong professional woman, who is weaker than a plant tendril in her personal world of dysfunctional love and a bad marriage.
At times when the fights at home became too much, I hit my husband, for he had this way of lashing out with hurtful words. This happened most when I was hurt. He emotionally arrested me at home. He tried in all manners possible to kill all my passions, and demeaned me. I dealt with this by fighting so he settled down and stopped.
A story of dysfunctional love
We’re still here. Our children are scared of the troubles at home. I can’t control myself after a point and my husband plays on that. To the world, I’m the one who fusses and he remains the cool customer. Nobody knows about our dysfunctional conflicts and some people even idealize our marriage. Little do they know how screwed up our world is.
On some nights, he wakes me from sleep – to have sex or fight. I am frigid, cold and silent most times. I often contemplate suicide. At other times, I go and quietly roll up a joint. I have taken to smoking marijuana in private.
I long for love, but I have trust issues now. I have shut out that compartment that recognizes love. I’m waiting for our children to go to university before doing anything drastic. Just four more years. Perhaps I’m waiting, hoping my husband will change. I do love my husband and I know he loves me too but this everyday toxic love and dysfunction in our marriage cannot go on any longer.
If you are in an dysfunctional marriage that is taking a toll on you, please reach out to our experts. Online relationship counseling will help you find happiness in your life. You can use these services at very affordable rates from the comfort of your home through a WhatsApp call, Skype call, Google Hangout, Zoom, or your preferred method of communication.
As told to Joie Bose
Constant relationship arguments, hurling abuses, physical abuse, not spending time together and lack of sex can all point to a case of a dysfunctional relationship.
Absolutely. If one takes the right step towards understanding and solving the major issues, your dysfunctional love can indeed become happy love. Try to calmly talk the issues out first and create a plan of action on how to rekindle love and create a better marriage. If that does not work, use the right methods such as counseling for greater assistance.