When your relationships become weakening mesocylones…

What the heck is a mesocycle, you ask, and what does it have to do with relationships?!?  Great question…

There is a young couple that my wife and I know that moved away from our hometown a few years ago.  They seemed like a happy couple with a healthy marriage.  We recently received a photo Christmas card from the family but the husband is no longer in the picture (literally).  Turns out their marriage ended earlier in the year.  I was very sorry to hear that.  While I don’t know the specifics of what caused the divorce, it did make me think about something.  Here’s where the weather comes in…

A mesocyclone is a rotating storm.  Mesocyclones can strengthen into full-bore supercells which in turn can produce tornadoes.  They can be very destructive and are not taken lightly by meteorologists when they show up on a radar screen.   But today, I don’t want to focus the potential danger of mesocyclones; I want to focus on their life cycle for a moment.   

Once a mesocyclone has formed and is in the mature stage, it can only continue if the circulation stays strong.  These storms are an amazing interdependent system of wind, pressure and moisture.  The strongest ones can even overcome external forces that work to tear them apart.   But during the weakening stage, the rotation begins to slow, spread out and pull apart until eventually it dissipates. 

Relationships can be much the same – they often resist the outside negative influences of the world when they are strong but fall apart when spouses begin to pull apart from one another.  Take the following scenario…  You begin to withdraw emotionally and physically from your spouse because he or she seems to be focused on something else more than you (i.e. career, money, hobby, another person, etc).  Your spouse senses your withdrawal and coldness and responds by spending even less time with you.  In turn, you get even more frustrated and close your emotional door even more.  Now, your spouse does the same.   This keeps happening more and more;  them more closed-off you are, the more focus your spouse places on those other things that make him or her happy.   Pulling away has led to even more of what was causing you to be upset in the first place.  Eventually, you only seem to argue with your spouse during the few times you speak to one another at all.  This is a very dangerous cycle.  The more you close off, the more your spouse does too.  Eventually the relationship weakens, slows and separates just like the dying mesocyclone.  What once was a formidable force that could resist the outside negative influences of the world is now just a whisper in the wind.  Sad.  What’s even more sad is that much of this “pulling apart” of the relationship can likely be avoided, but it takes guts and it takes willingness to swallow some pride.  If you find your natural reaction is to pull away when your spouse seems to be doing the same, one of you HAS to stop and turn around or you’ll both keep going in opposite directions.  One of you has to begin running toward the other rather than continuing to run away.  Show your spouse that you don’t want to go in this direction and begin working on the real problem at hand, which is whatever is causing the hard feelings in the first place.  Far too many relationships vanish into thin air simply because one person won’t take the time, make the effort or let down their wall of pride and turn around.  I’ve found that those with the most successful marriages don’t get caught in this cycle of walking in opposite directions.  Talk about your problems.  Don’t be passive aggressive.  Share your feelings.  Don’t get defensive when your wife or husband voices concerns.  Listen and then work together for a solution.  If you need to, seek outside counsel.  This obviously wouldn’t solve all marriages but it sure would help many.

So, there’s your answer…  That’s how relationships can be like weakening mesocyclones.  Don’t let yours become one…

2 Responses

  1. Some really good words of wisdom. Sometimes careers
    can put a strain or “weaken” a relationship. My wife and
    I try not to have this problem, but with the fast-paced
    life style these days its hard not to slip in this rut!

  2. Great words of wisdom!

    Even when in balance it is very easy to
    weaken due to the fast-passed life styles
    these days. You must have faith and
    depend on each other. My wife is my best friend
    and I am hers also. This seems to keep
    us going.

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