A serious relationship requires teamwork. Blaming other people or circumstances seem may have been how you or your S.O. dealt with conflict or unpleasant situations in the past but cannot continue into your marriage. The climate of blame in a marital relationship will create many negative side-effects that can last throughout a marriage.
8 Ways Blame Can Negatively Impact a Marriage
- Fear of taking a risk. For marriages to succeed, we have to risk being hurt, risk being wrong, and risk trusting our spouse. The constant need to blame a spouse for problems in the marriage lessens one's willingness to take a risk on the marriage.
- Fear of taking responsibility.
- Fear of making a decision. Sometimes indecision stems from personal insecurities, which will likely manifest in other areas of his or her life. When the choice is left to a spouse for purely vindictive reasons—being able to criticize the choice after it is made or by bringing it up in a later argument as an example of the partner's unfair power—that is a red flag. Constant blame, especially with these motives, causes the other person to shut down and stop participating in the marriage.
- Feelings of resentment. If you're constantly being blamed for a problem, resentment is going to build. What happens when resentment builds? Intimacy breaks down and your marriage will likely follow.
- Increased emotional stress. Dumping all the blame for problems off onto the other spouse causes an increase in emotional stress and physical stress. You do your marriage and your spouse great harm if you can't take responsibility when it is yours to take.
- Decreased desire to communicate. Who wants to talk to someone who points fingers, refuses to listen and blames, blames, blames?
- A sense powerlessness. If one spouse understands the importance of working through marital problems and the other reverts to blaming instead of finding solutions, the more pro-active spouse is going to eventually begin to feel powerless and discouraged when it comes to solving problems in the marriage. This usually adds up to a lot of unhappiness, too.
- Decreased passion and intimacy. Who wants to have sex or be emotionally intimate with a spouse who constantly blames them for everything? If you are a blamer, don't be surprised when your spouse distances themselves from you in the bedroom.
Blame Protects One Spouse and Damages the Other
Blame allows a spouse to put responsibility on their mate and everything other than himself/herself. It means your spouse doesn’t have to experience the discomfort of looking at their own faults or take responsibility for the situation. If a spouse doesn’t have to look at their own faults or take responsibility that means they don’t have to change. It is the other person who needs to change…with the problems and the blaming spouse can stay in their comfort zone.
Next time your spouse blames you instead of taking responsibility tell him/her they are failing to have a responsible attitude. And, in doing so, are failing to get the most they can out of the situation.