By Ron Price … I went to the dentist a week ago. I had endured terrific pain for about three years and decided enough was enough. The week prior, I visited my mechanic because my truck had been running poorly again for about three years. I must be in the mood to get things fixed as I also recently called a plumber to fix a sink that had been clogged, you guessed it, for about three years.

I think I know what facetious means, and I’m pretty sure I just gave you an example.  If you believe any of those statements, you likely should question my sanity and wonder why you should care what I have to say – or write.

I’m happy to say those experiences were all made up, but please get the point I want to make. Researchers have determined that most couples in a distressed marriage endure their pain about three years before they reach out for help. I can think of various words to define this behavior, but none I care to use in public.

All relationships will endure periods of discord and distress from time to time. To expect otherwise is foolhardy at best. So if you find yourself in a challenging marriage (or other relationship), please do not hesitate to do whatever it takes to get you to a better place. And, contrary to apparent popular opinion, sooner is far better than later.

Relationship guidance, support, and help are plentiful and easy to find in our internet age. To prove my point, here’s a link to a brief (6:07) video I made that will help you prevent ugly confrontations from getting out of hand

I can think of lots of lousy excuses for failing to seek help for a troubled relationship, but few, if any, good ones. Please, don’t wait.

— Ron Price MA writes a regular column on  He is the owner/operator of Productive Outcomes, Inc., and has spent the last 30+ years as a mediator, helping people resolve their differences with others. He provides in-person and virtual training on a variety of life skills. He is a member of Piñon Hills Seventh-day Adventist Church in Farmington, New Mexico and a member of the RMC Executive Committee. For more information, visit To add your name to his weekly mailing list, please send him an email at [email protected]. Photo supplied

This article was reprinted with permission