How Healthy is Your Marriage?
By Leslie Vernick
Marriage isn’t just a legal contract, it is a living dynamic relationship. Sadly, many marriages, even among Christians are not doing so well. As a Christian counselor and coach I’ve seen hundreds if not thousands of couples over the past 45 years who seek counseling to deal with their marital distress.
Sometimes when you’re in the fog of the problem, it’s difficult to tell the difference whether you are in a difficult marriage, a disappointing marriage and a destructive marriage.
To help you figure that out, I’ve listed 16 traits of a healthy marriage. Answer the questions to see whether your marriage is relatively healthy, even if it is going through a season of disappointing or difficult. First answer the questions about your spouse. Then answer them again, but ask yourself if you do these things for your spouse.
- My spouse shows care and concern for me and my needs. Yes No
- My spouse has my best interest in mind. Yes No
- My spouse asks my opinion on things. Yes No
- My spouse trusts me. Yes No
- My spouse works with me as a partner to parent our children. Yes No
- My spouse is willing to get help for our marriage problems. Yes No
- My spouse takes responsibility and apologizes when he or she is wrong. Yes No
- My spouse asks me how I feel our marriage is going. Yes No
- My spouse is considerate of my feelings. Yes No
- When we have a problem, my spouse is willing to talk about it. Yes No
- My spouse uses the Bible to correct his or her own life. Yes No
- My spouse listens to advice from wise people. Yes No
- My spouse allows me to be myself. Yes No
- My spouse allows me to make my own decisions. Yes No
- My spouse allows me to disagree. Yes No
- My spouse is a good steward of our finances. Yes No
If you answered “yes” to most of these questions, your marriage is relatively healthy, even if you’re having some conflict or difficulties. One or two “no” answers indicate where there are weak areas in your marriage. More than three “no” answers indicate an unhealthy marriage. More than five “no”s point toward a destructive relationship.