How to get back together and save your relationship or marriage

by Relationship Coach Rinatta Paries on July 13, 2012 · 24 comments

in Articles, Break-ups and Divorce, Dating, Marriage, Relationships

Many couples go through struggles, fights, problems, and issues, and almost reach the brink of breakup or divorce. Yet they love each other and don’t want to give up on their relationship.  They would much rather find a way to get back together and stay together. This is a good thing – it’s good to keep trying to make love work.

But how do you get back together so that you can save your relationship or marriage?  Here are the steps a couple must engage in to get back together and stay together successfully. You will also find actions each partner should take individually to survive while the relationship is being repaired.

Do this together to get back together and save your relationship or marriage:

1. Commit to the relationship

It’s very hard to work on a relationship when either of you has one foot out the door. If you have the attitude of, “If this or that doesn’t work, I can’t be here,” it’s almost certain that your relationship will fail.

To get back together and stay together you two must commit to the relationship and to each other deeply. You both must commit to try and try again to make your relationship work.

Instead of taking the attitude of defining conditions that would make you leave the relationship, decide that you are in fact going to get what you want in your relationship. The question to ask is not if you are going to get what you want, but when, and how you are going to get more of what you want so that both of you are happy.

2. Figure out what went wrong in your relationship or marriage

To save your relationships or marriage, both of you must honestly look at what you did to get your relationship to its current state. All defensiveness must be set aside, all excuses thrown out the window, so you can honestly see what happened.

It does your relationship absolutely no good to point fingers at each other. And it is a disservice to your relationship if only one of you is willing to own the blame or responsibility for what happened. Both of you must come to the table equally willing to own everything you have contributed to the current state of your relationship.

If you want help, I am an excellent relationship diagnostician. In one coaching session I can tell you exactly what went wrong in your relationship and show each of you how you contributed to the situation. Find out how I help couples in a 40-minute sample Get Clarity Couples Coaching Session.

3. Work on yourselves

These are the most critical steps you can take to succeed in getting back together and staying that way:

  • Work on the issues and personality traits that got you and your relationship into trouble.
  • Work on these issues wholeheartedly, because if you don’t, you will lose the relationship.
  • Do everything in your power to turn your issues around.
  • Together, read all the helpful books you can get your hands on.
  • Take classes and attend groups together.
  • Get yourselves a coach or therapist.
  • Take significant action daily to show each other you care and value each other and your relationship.

4. Deal with the pain the two of you caused each other

When ready, each of you needs to talk about the pain caused by the other, with each person listening intently and taking it in. You both need to share the pain, listen to each other and find a way to truly forgive and start anew.

5. Talk to each other often

Make sure you communicate clearly with each other about what you want and expect in the relationship. Make sure that you both know what each one of you is agreeing to do or not do.

Talk about your feelings and experiences. Share with each other what you are discovering in your personal work. And sometimes just talk about the weather or what’s going on your life. Use communication to connect.

6. Take action to cure what led to your breakup or the distance between you

Do not communicate only and do nothing else – this is how most couples who are trying to get back together fail. They reconnect, talk, but don’t make changes to support their relationship. They eventually destroy the relationship by the same actions that got them to separate or breakup in the first place.

You must take many actions to specifically cure, fix, change, shift and transform the behavior and thinking patterns that brought you two to the brink of a breakup.

7. Create joyful moments together, even if they start out small

Spend snippets of time together, just being close. Bring back – or increase – physical intimacy, even if it feels a bit awkward.

At the same time, do not throw yourselves back into the thick of the relationship until the hard personal work has been done by both of you. You do not want to risk the fragile nature of  by your relationship by overwhelming each other with untransformed issues.

Do these steps individually to sanely survive the “getting back together” period:

1. Get support

Who in your life will restore you to sanity when your thoughts and emotions overwhelm you? Who in your life can accurately see what’s happening with you and in your relationship, and give you correct advice on how to repair your situation, so that you can stay together? Be careful of advice from family and friends. They love you and have good intentions, but their advice will often harm your relationship instead of helping.

If you want clear, unbiased feedback on what’s going on in your relationship, try working with me as your coach. Go here to learn about how you can try coaching in a 30-minute sample Get Clarity Coaching Session.

2. Face your fears about the relationship

  • Face your greatest fears about the relationship.
  • Face your greatest wants and desires for the relationship.
  • Face the feelings of possibly not having what you want.
  • Face your fears of losing the relationship.
  • Face your fears of disappointment and heartache.

In facing your fears, you will confront those worst possible scenarios that make you want to run while you are trying to put your relationship back together. It will help you to remember that your fears are only possibilities, not certainties.

3. Devise a strategy of what you will do if your greatest fears come true

Put the strategy down on paper and brainstorm or research real-world solutions and steps to take in case your relationship does not work out as planned. Having this strategy will give you a sense of power, and help you realize that you will be fine. Give yourself the comfort of knowing that, regardless of the situation, you will be able to take care of yourself and your life.

4. Practice a spiritual discipline such as meditation, prayer, communing with nature, sitting quietly, going to church, etc.

You need to learn how to be with what IS. Spiritual discipline can teach you how to accept the now when it’s not what you want, not what you hoped for and not what you would choose for yourself. Learning to be with what IS will give you peace in any circumstance, which will make it easier during the difficult period of trying to save your relationship.

5. Work on gratitude

So often when important situations in life are not going as we want, we tend to discount or ignore the other things that are going well.

Gratitude for those things that are going well will help you feel better and give you more patience and resilience to survive this trying period in your relationship.

A practice of making or reviewing a gratitude list each day can make a big difference in the level of happiness and well-being you experience.

6. Keep to a healthy routine and take care of yourself well

Go for walks. Go to sleep early. Meditate. Drink plenty of water. Get support. Do activities that bring you joy. Eat good food. Do things you like doing. The more you take care of yourself, the more resilience you will bring to your relationship situation, and the more patient you will be during the getting back together process.

7. Do your personal work

Delve into your personality and your issues. Look at what brought you to the point of breakup or separation in your relationship. For the moment, forget about your partner and look at why you are here and what you are trying to work out.

Work with a coach or a counselor, read books, or take workshops to help yourself grow.

8. Go deeper into your career, your work, your family or your volunteer activities

While you and your partner are trying to get back together, and you don’t yet know where the relationship will end up, dig into other meaningful areas of your life. Give time and effort to those parts of your life that bring rich returns.

9. Allow happiness

Often when major situations are not working as we would like, we feel guilty for experiencing happiness in other areas of life. It is as if we feel we need to be loyal to the unhappiness. Give yourself permission to be happy and to laugh. Give yourself moments of happiness daily.

So how do you make getting back together stick, so that the two of you save your relationship or marriage?

Don’t just get together and hope that this time it will magically work out. When couples do only this, they fail – every time!

Instead:

  • Put in time and effort and grow both of yourselves and the relationship.
  • Take real, concrete steps to fix and change specifically the problems that brought you to the breakup or separation.
  • Get knowledgeable, expert help with resolving the conflict between the two of you.
  • Be patient with each other and commit yourselves to personal growth.

Only then will your effort of trying to save your relationship or marriage will reap the rewards of a lasting, deep, fulfilling relationship.

To get help with your relationship, try working with me as your coach. To learn about how you can try coaching for individuals go here. To learn about how you can try coaching for couples go here.

 

{ 24 comments }

nesha May 18, 2012 at 11:36 am

me and my boyfriend have been together goin on 3 yrs now. We are about to have our first child in november but we juss had a big fight and said a lot of mean and nasty things that left him getting his stuff packed up and moving with 30 days. I love him to death with my whole heart and I been stickin through wantin this to work its just now I think he is really done so we can’t be the happy family we always wanted. I’m just stressed out and tired I want to be with him and nobody else its just things haven’t been working lately. But I’m a keep my head up and put it through for our child cause I love him and want our child to have both parents not us arguin between who has who. Idk

Ceane February 15, 2012 at 2:48 am

Really good advice, I am in a situation for a second chance and was worried about how to make things different, better this time. I feel confident this info is going to benefit us , giving it a go.

Going within me, instead of just focusing on him, working on what I need to change, not him, talking, and walking that talk, and keep busy else where not just with him, while we are working on our stuff.

Thank you.

ben February 5, 2012 at 11:38 pm

I have been having issues with my baby mama is not a faithfull girlfriend but i still love her very much but its really hard to forgive her i have tried another relationship but i know i still love my sons mother but she dose not have some qulities i want in a wife she is not inteligent at all.plz what do i do.

Ceane February 15, 2012 at 3:00 am

o poor man, your in love, she did wrong by you, you tried else where, but you still love your Son s Mama, BUT you think she is not INTELLIGENT for a wife.

I am just reiterating whet you have written so you can see how I have understood what you have written!

I think you need to look at how you were in the relationship and try understand why she did what she did, cause I am sure she loves you too. Why would she stray?

Be prepared for the answer, really listen and understand. Then be open minded and see if she really is the unfaithful type, or she did this as a reaction to an action between you two!!!!!

Ask your self is she really unintelligent, or are your expectations too high????? Can she be her self??? or does she have to reach your water level mark you have set that she will always be unable to reach????

If you want her back, make peace with the goings on between you two, really understand what went on, and take the advice of the how to try again knowledge.

Take care,

C

D CIRO January 22, 2012 at 8:53 am

WE ALL MAKE MISTAKES IT ALL IN HOW YOU CORRECT THEM 16 YEARS
IS ALONG TIME TO JUST WALK AWAY FROM TO DAUGHTERS 13@7yrs old
they are my life.I HAVE NEVER BEEN A ANGEL 1ST TO ADMIT NEVER RAN FROM THAT I DID CHEAT THATS WHERE IT ALL STARTED THAT WAS MY
BIGGEST MISTAKE I NEVER COULD GET OVER THE GUILT MYSELF HONESTLY DONT EVEN KNOW WHY I DID IT,BUT CAME CLEAN AND TRYED TO CORRECT IT THEN THE TIT FOR TAT STARTED I HAVE CUST OF MY TO GIRLS AND HAVE BEEN RAISEING THEM FOR 2.5YRS ON MY OWN I DONT DATE DONT HAVE THE WANT TOO.WE HAVE BEEN TRYN THE FEW MONTHS TO PUT THINGS BACK TOGETHER WE DO LOVE ONENOTHER SO TO ME ITS WORTH THE FIGHT OR WAIT NEVER GIVE UP KEEP THE FAITH IF ITS MENT TO BE IT WILL BE!

D CIRO January 22, 2012 at 8:42 am

THIS IS SO TRUE,AND VERY HELPFULL YOU HAVE TO WORK HARD ON
IT AND SHOW ITS WORTH IN THE END..

Ceane February 15, 2012 at 3:07 am

I agree, good on you for coming clean, even though tensions are not good, truth is the best way, because otherwise we weave a tangled basket, and then become a basket case when we lie. Best of luck, it is worth the fight. Do me a favor and try and work out why you slept with some one in the first place.

colette cave November 5, 2011 at 6:07 pm

i been going thru with my fincee for 2 yrs but everything went good afirst year but after that time i leave to another country for time being it all boil down that sumthing aint right to me like i could tell his face expression but he ended up told me that he did .my mouth went dropp open and couldn’t believe what he was really tell me about the party having sex in the batheroom ,it broke myheart so much and i couldn’t barley breathe or say a word to him i cry alot and i couldn’t get no sleep nor eat anything al that time beofre i was excited to visit him but i couldnt face him or give him a chance at the same time i really loves him with all my heart but it hurts me the most and i told him ,”i will never ever hurt you as the way you hurt me “.frum there ikeep on thinking all the time tha he will contnue to cheat on me but i am not around him ,he ask me to marry him and i say “yes”, then pu a ring on my finger ,i do halp him alot of his paper to get a visa snd everything i do for him i never cheat ona man befo in my entire life or how it will ever to trust another person again ,so yet still not sure yet but i already told my fiancee that i forgive him but in my mind tellin me that he will not believe me of waht im saying to him his own word “I DON’T CARE”,i couldnt facew him because i’m afraid of letting it go and i kept it inside me all that time so he blaiming me for nothing that i did n’t do i don’t know if he trying to use me for a fool or to make fun at me cause i’m always unhappy and left out

Ceane February 15, 2012 at 3:15 am

He does not care by te sounds of it!!!! What is he doing while you are away from him, while you are thinking of how excited you will be to see him again!!!!

Sounds like you are from different countries! I hope you take the advice of the ‘Try again writings”, but only if he shows signs that he wants to try again, and he is equally working towards a better you and him, not just you working towards it! I reckon either way a loving and devoted person like you needs to be feeling happy and having peace, having fun! Think of you more than you think of him. Good Luck.

Ang November 3, 2011 at 8:47 am

I met a man 14 years ago and fell in love with him, we were both in marriages that were not going anywhere. Our love from the beginning was strained due to hurting the other partners and there were children involved. We also started to run a business together, the stress that was put on us was immense but we managed to stay together, but my partner took a lot of his anger out on me in the relationship, after five years I then started to resent this anger and withdrew from him. He then realised that I had done that and tried to win my feelings back, he supported me through lots of problems with my wayward teenage daughter and other family matters and I appreciated him for that, also my partner and I got in a lot of debt, some of the debt he kept from me and didnt tell me, this has been going on for years, in the end I closed down and wouldnt let him in at all and moved out a month ago, I miss him so much and realise that I loved him so much , we have a strong bond but we are both so broken about splitting up. He has a casual girlfriend in which I dont blame him as I kept refusing his love and told him to find someone else in my anger and hurt , but now I am absolutely gutted and would love to start all over again but this time with no debt and not living beyond our means. I have never felt a passion and strong heartfelt hold as I have for this man.

Ceane February 15, 2012 at 3:27 am

Why do men do that? My experience men need always to have someone, while women can do it alone for a while. You must be gutted! I would be too. I think that if he was angry alot, why you decided you had enough, and he spent no time with him self, he jumped into another relationship straight away, did not give himself time to fix his defects up, well I think he will be the same in the next relationship eventually. I wish men would stop to think like women do, but then again they are not women, and dont stop alot to see what it is they do wrong, and have the courage to try and see that and fix it, if they are serious. At the end of the day we all speak different languages, and we all need to communicate better, and women need to keep their emotions in check, cause men do not understand that!!! Hope it works out with you. You might need to show interests else where, he will either come running or not, but I think you may have a better chance not begging cause men dont like that!

joan May 14, 2011 at 10:13 am

I fell in love with a really wonderful person and just as life was getting good he started to show me the abandonment parts of his life… even when i have nothing to do with his abandonment issues he blames them on me…Your artilce was beyond excellent… i want to use some of your suggestions to try to make it work.,. but am i not being realisitc about what can change with in him to make it work!!!

Ceane February 15, 2012 at 3:35 am

Do you mean he started to abandon you, or he talks of when he was abandoned in his past and he feels you abandon him? Is he co dependent???

RJ May 2, 2011 at 6:49 am

After an 18 month relationship, we broke up for about a month and decided to go back. Things are so different now. The magic we once had is now gone, he seems to be very distant. I want this to work, but don’t quite know how.

Matt February 28, 2011 at 11:24 pm

I really like this article, I was in my relationship for three and a half great years and she decided to break it off out of the blue and told me that she is not happy anymore and that I’m not changing. We met up a few days later and had a good long talk and in the end it was still a little unclear what needed to happen but we were able to get everything off our chests in what went wrong and what we want in the future. She wanted to take it very slow and start off sometime by meeting up for coffee, however I called her every few days and dragged on conversations with her and talked more about other peoples problems and the things I was changing already, which was a mistake as I realize she wants to see the change eventually and not hear about it all the time. She told me a couple weeks later a lot of things that contradicted her self and what she had been saying earlier and told me that she loves me but she is not in love with me anymore and that she has not thought about me at all the last few weeks. I tried to explain to her that I have damaged things in the relationship so bad over the last year that I can understand yes she may not be in love with me anymore but I have to change the things that I have been doing the last year and have been doing to my self due to depression and laziness and getting to comfortable in a routine that was unhealthy in all aspects. I miss her and love her more than she will ever know, I’ve changed a lot of things in the last month and am very proud of my self for the changes that I have made for my self. The last conversation we had left things kind of open but I do feel she said a lot of things out of anger cause I was not listening to what she wanted which was time and space, both for her and me to recognize the things I need to change for my self and not for her as she believed that I was changing just to be what she always wanted however I am making the changes now due to the rude awakening she gave me and the power she has given me to find my true self and to be the man that I know I am and have always wanted from my self. I really hope when I call her again in time that we start off slow as friends like she wanted and grow together back in to a relationship and become stronger after this and never look back. I really need to hope that things can work out for us and never give up both on change and on her.

Ceane February 15, 2012 at 3:50 am

Congratulations on your openness and honesty with your self, and your willingness to listen to others and change your faults. Please change for your self though not for her. Please do it for you. She may have the level too high and unrealistic and you may never meet the level she EXPECTS, cause she could always change the level, and EXPECT you to jump to it, and you may never be happy with her!!!. She sounds like she may have had too many expectations, and what about her, I am sure she had some things that could have changed too, not just you!!! So go easy on your self. I do not mean too put her down, just keep your self in the process of all this saga, do it for you not for her!!!

Unknown February 5, 2010 at 7:10 am

I love my girlfriend and we are or were engaged but we hit a big bump in our relationship and now she cant seem to forgive me
she now i lover her and she says she loves me to
idk what to do idk what to think
the pain is big and my heart is weak
i want you know that i want us to be
but what would it be if we cant see
i love you baby and im sorry i did
i just dont wanna lose you your the best thing that ever happened to me
and i want us to get married and be happy
like we use to before everything happened
i truly do miss you
i need you baby
.-= Unknown´s last blog ..By: tammy =-.

tammy September 16, 2009 at 3:09 pm

i love this article. ima talk to my boyfriend about everything.we have been going out on and off for 5 months , and we both love eachother so muchh.we just started goin back out again.but lately our relationship has been on the rocks and im trying my best to make it stronger cause im scared of losin him hes the only one i can say i want to have a family with and want to spent the rest of my life with.its just really hardd.

christena November 21, 2007 at 1:33 pm

I loved your article. It gave me very insightful ideas to help me keep my broken down relationship together.The baby is involed and at least we both agree that both parents in a child’s life is important.

Cheryl May 23, 2007 at 12:23 pm

I’m embarking on rekindle a relationship with my ex-husband. We are trying to make this work. But I am scared and not sure if I’m making the right decision. He has hurt me so much in the past, and even during our time of reconciling he let another woman spend the night, although he stated nothing happened, this is part of his MO. I want so much to trust him, but I am afraid to give him my heart for him to hurt me again. I’m looking for ways to trust and rekindle, but I’m running out of energy really fast.

TONYA January 7, 2007 at 7:56 am

I MADE A MISTAKE. I WENT TO MEET SOMEONE FOR A DRINK AND LAUHGS AND NOW THE LAUGH IS ON ME. I LOVE MY MAN MORE THAN ANYTHING IN THE WORLD AND NOW I HAVE HURT HIM SO BAD.AND NOW IF HE WILL JUST GIVE ME A CHANCE TO SHOW HIM I LOVE HIM AND I WILL NEVER MAKE THAT MISTAKE AGAIN. IT IS TOUGH TO GET BACK THE TRUST HE ONCE HAD WITH ME, BUT IF IT TAKES OUR LIFETIME I WILL PROVE TO HIM THAT I LOVE HIM MORE THAN ANYTHING.I LOVE YOU BABY

chaicork March 7, 2006 at 1:59 pm

It seems whenever I try to find material to fit my situation I find the “focus on the love foundation” stuff. I am not saying it’s pithy at all. It just doesn’t fit because we don’t love eachother. We’re trying again and again and again because we have children (me) and we don’t want to fail (us) and we don’t think anyone else has it any better in the end so why jump out of the frying pan and into the flame (him.) So, without the love foundation, what are we to build on?

Lotus March 5, 2006 at 6:38 pm

I found this article very helpful for me, in trying to focus on what is most important in trying to survive beyond the first five months of my marriage. I have decided to give this marriage at least a year’s commitment, before considering other options–and it’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done! I have found it difficult dealing with my husband’s angry outbursts, his isolation, and his apparent inability to be close and loving, and plan for the future together. My fairy tale bubble has broken, and the day-to-day realities listed in this article are good focus for me. The daily rejection and loneliness is difficult, although it helps to consider that these are expressions of his problems and issues more than mine. I’m continuing to learn through each of my relationships, and growing stronger through them.
I recommend Imago Therapy (a local therapist in trained in this technique) for dealing with issues from one’s family of origin. Thanks for writing all!

Trixie December 11, 2005 at 2:59 pm

Great article Coach!
I can relate to ‘try again’ (more than twice) without the right approach. Trying again is not repeating the same scripts or behaviours, hoping that this time will ‘delete’ the previous experiences within the relationship. I think if we have to ‘try again’ in a relationship, it is because that relationship has already created baggage. That baggage has to be accepted, but not repeated. I tried that way, but, my ex partner had his own perspective and didn’t want to lose that feeling of the ‘perfect relationship’ by acknowledging the wrong turns we took.

Anyway, Thank you for making it so clear
Trix

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