Marriage as a Business Relationship – Part 8
Hal and Sidra Stone
Life is very complicated. There are myriads of details that seem to increase as the years roll along.
Each day has its own list of chores and activities and plans and planning and car pools and house cleaning and gardening and bills to be paid and calls to be made and cars to be repaired and purchases to be investigated and shopping to be done. It is always amazing how much there is to do in what seems should be the rather simple business of running a modern household.
The vulnerable child within is generally very anxious about the world, and it is very important from the child’s standpoint that the details of living are taken care of properly; otherwise there is a great deal of anxiety. What this means in family relationships is that the couple, in addition to everything else that they are doing, are running a business and are business partners.
Being good business partners is not necessarily conducive to the maintenance of a romantic relationship. Not being good business partners and allowing the details of life to be ignored is guaranteed to be destructive to relationship.
If we accept marriage as, in part, a business relationship, then we have to honor this by providing time for the business to be transacted. Otherwise, the business enters into every facet of one’s life.
We personally feel it is very valuable to have regular business meetings. At these times, we talk over everything that has to be done, establish priorities, and then decide who is to do what. We find that it is extremely valuable for us to give the business side of our relationship this kind of structure, particularly because our professional and our personal lives are intermingled.
It helps very much in containing the business side of the relationship and not allowing it to spill over into the rest of our lives. It also helps us in the containing of pusher energy by providing a structure as to what needs to be done.
What we are all struggling with is the issue of maximizing the amount of intimacy we can have in our relationships. Too much attention being paid to business can destroy intimacy. Too little attention being paid to business can destroy intimacy through the anxiety that is created. It is a difficult balance that each of us must wrestle with in our lives.