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When Love Feels Dead, Should The Marriage End

I understand why some think their marriage is over when the love they used to feel for their spouse now feels dead. After all, it seems ingrained in our thinking if something dies you must get rid of it and replace it.
A lot of people view love as something akin to planting a tree in the backyard. If it dies you dig it up and replace it with a new one. Or, when a pet dies and you replace it with a new one. We do the same with a lot of our relationships with other people as well. When friendships fade and die off, we look for new ones. When leaders or mentors lose their place in our lives, we find replacements.
feels dead 
It’s no wonder we approach marriage with the same mindset as we do all these other relationships. The feelings of love can and often do fade. And there are times when those feelings can be outright flat lined, dead, completely gone. But does this mean the marriage has to be over?

 
No, you don’t have to pronounce the marriage dead because the love feels dead. You can bring love back to life. You can recreate love and restored it.

Two types of love 

There are two basic types of love. The love you feel and the love you do. 
 
Some think the doing kind of love is only in response to the feeling type of love. And most of the time that is the normal way it works. We are usually motivated to act out of strong emotional love in our hearts. That’s when kindness and devotion show up in our actions toward the person who has captured our heart.
 
But there are times when the feelings of love come as a result of first doing love. When we commit ourselves to actions of love. Regardless of what feelings we have, something amazing happens. Our feelings start lining up with our actions. And thus we discover that love is a choice. It is a decision we make of our own free will.
 
We can choose to keep that love alive, or we can choose to let it die. Even in the most difficult circumstances. Even if the love we give is one sided and the pain of rejection threatens to quench the flame of our heart. We still get to chose if we will hold onto love, or if we will let love die.
 
Feelings of love are no different than feelings of happiness. There is always a trigger that gets the feeling going. Like happiness, you can lose the feeling of love at some point, but then with the right trigger, it can come back again. So when love feels dead, all you need is the right trigger. Or the right spark and you can bet that flame of love will come roaring back.

When love feels dead

Marriage is not meant to only be the result of love. Marriage is also designed as a relationship that produces love.
 
I found, through my own struggles in marriage, it was the marriage that saved our relationship. It was not our great love that first saved our marriage. It was first because of the importance of marriage we had to choose acts of love. Then our actions of choosing love began to save our relationship. And we kept choosing love as we rebuilt our marriage stronger than it had ever been before.
 
If we were dating when our feelings of love faded and died, we would have moved on. But the marriage motivated us to give more effort than we had ever given before. And that recreated a love that is more beautiful than any emotion that first brought us together. A love not birthed out of emotion and attraction. It’s a love that comes from deep down, gut wrenching will power, choice, and commitment. A choice and commitment that will carry us for the rest of our lives.

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