PETALING JAYA, MALAYSIA - There are three “Cs” couples should abide by to keep their marriages strong, say family groups.
Focus on The Family Malaysia executive director Lee Wee Min said practising Commitment, Communication and Consecrate Time would help bring down divorce rates.
“Commitment is the safety net to a relationship. Married couples need to be committed and show it by giving each other priority and unconditional love,” said Lee.
The second “C”, “communication”, he likened to blood in a human body.
“When blood stops flowing, the body will not function. Similarly, when communication ceases, the relationship stops functioning.
“Positive and meaningful communication where both can express themselves freely and respectfully is very important for a healthy marriage.
“Each spouse must learn to communicate what he or she wants, rather than expecting the other to know.”
A 2011 report by the Malaysian Quality of Life (MQLI) showed that the number of divorces last year had doubled compared to the previous year.
Meanwhile, figures from the Economic Planning Unit (EPU) showed that as of 2010, 33,788 out of 207,553 marriages had ended in divorce.
Lee said that the final “C” stands for “consecrate time”, and used the building of a concrete structure as an illustration.
“Consecrate means set apart'. While building a concrete structure, the concrete must be allowed 28 days to gain structural strength before the structure can be utilised.
“In the same way, couples must set aside time to strengthen their bonds that is, to get to know, understand and accept each other which cannot happen overnight,” said Lee.
Family counsellor Yvonne Lee said that marriage cannot work on a “trial basis”.
“It is a lifelong commitment, and takes lifelong effort for it to work.
“However, the perception towards marriage nowadays is let's just give it a try, and if it does not work we'll just split up',” she said.