Video: Breaking Through

When you feel stuck in your marriage, unable to move forward, we call it relationship gridlock. Accumulated hurts keep you both stuck in resentment and defensive. Sometimes it feels like your only choice is to stay and be miserable or leave and start again.

But there is another way…

Find out about the BreakThrough Online Course

About the Author:

Francine & Byron Pirola
Francine & Byron Pirola are the founders and principal authors of the SmartLoving series. They are passionate about living Catholic marriage to the full and helping couples reach their marital potential. They have been married since 1988 and have five children. Their articles may be reproduced for non commercial purposes with appropriate acknowledgement and back links.


  1. breakfreerut April 18, 2016 at 12:52 pm - Reply

    I wish forgiveness like you say is the solution. Tell me, if your spouse continually repeats her shoving and intimidation and emotional blackmail WITHOUT even recognizing it and EVEN tries to justify her own actions, ALL the forgiveness in the world WON’T change a thing! email me an practical solution please.

    • Francine & Byron Pirola
      Francine & Byron Pirola April 18, 2016 at 2:50 pm - Reply

      Dear Breakfreerut,
      Thank you for reaching out – it shows that you are invested in your marriage and that you love your wife, even though it is difficult.

      Forgiveness is not about your spouse as much as it is about you and your mental health. If your wife is emotionally abusive and physically aggressive towards you, that is not acceptable and forgiveness won’t change her behaviour. What it does do is that it enables you to approach your situation from a position of strength and calm and genuine love. A love that can honour your own dignity as well as challenge her to reform her behaviour.

      In situations like this, it may be that you need to separate for a period in order for you both to do the work required to address your difficulties. It is always preferrable to get professional assisstance to ensure that you are always acting in a way that honours you, your wife and the vows you made on your wedding day.

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