We always ponder upon the status of many marriages around us and what makes some of them successful and what leads others to dissatisfaction. Reading literature on understanding, communication or even intimacy could answer part of the question. However, does it mean that couples with good communication skills and openness are always happy with their marriages? Or are all intimate couples happy? The answer is not easy to define. However, as a coach where I was fortunate enough to meet many couples and discuss marital issues, I have come to realize that the key to happiness in marriages is confined in one word: responsibility.

By the term responsibility, I do not mean maturity and taking care of one’s self or financially supporting a family. By responsibility I mean to be responsible for one’s happiness. Our mistaken belief that marriage makes a person happier has been in our subconscious far too long, and we seem to extend it to generations ahead. Reality is, marriage does not make a person happier – it’s one’s choice to be happy that makes a person happier.

Our teens must be trained on such an essential point, as not to depend on anyone to make them feel better about themselves or to even make them feel like a whole person. If you want to be happy, make that choice to do whatever you can that could make you ethically happy and content with one’s personal and spiritual development. Effectively, this will reflect positively in your marriage and with your friends and coworkers.

A spouse could help you develop into a better human being or could even make you see life from a different perspective, but when it comes to happiness, it’s your responsibility.