Thursday 22 August 2019

Should anyone leave a marriage after seven months?

Did Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth really give their marriage a shot before deciding to end it?

Miley Cyrus (R) and Liam Hemsworth arrive for the 2019 Met Gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 6, 2019, in New York. - The Gala raises money for the Metropolitan Museum of Arts Costume Institute. The Gala's 2019 theme is Camp: Notes on Fashion
Miley Cyrus (R) and Liam Hemsworth arrive for the 2019 Met Gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 6, 2019, in New York. - The Gala raises money for the Metropolitan Museum of Arts Costume Institute. The Gala's 2019 theme is Camp: Notes on Fashion" inspired by Susan Sontag's 1964 essay "Notes on Camp". (Photo by ANGELA WEISS / AFP)

Sheena McGinley

One could argue that Liam Hemsworth and Miley Cyrus were doomed from the start — that is, when the couple ended their first engagement in 2013 before eventually marrying in 2018.

However, as hindsight suggests, things seemed to nosedive most notably around the time of the Met Gala in May. The pair were snapped on the red carpet and didn’t portray their usual unified front. Liam was suitably stoic, while Miley channelled her 2013 “twerky” self, animatedly licking his face and arguably acting the goat. They haven’t been photographed together at a public event since.

Speaking of the breakup, Miley was first to come forth with her two cents via her rep, who released this statement: “Ever-evolving, changing as partners and individuals, they have decided this is what’s best while they both focus on themselves and careers. They still remain dedicated parents to all of their animals they share while lovingly taking this time apart. Please respect their process and privacy.”

Additionally, Miley posted the following musings: “Don’t fight evolution, because you will never win. Like the mountain I am standing on top of [somewhere in Italy], which was once under water, connected with Africa, change is inevitable. The Dolomites were not created over night, it was over millions of years that this magnificent beauty was formed. My dad always told me, ‘Nature never hurries but it is always on time’... it fills my heart with peace and hope KNOWING that is true. I was taught to respect the planet and its process and I am committed to doing the same with my own.” Indeed.

Liam Hemsworth and Miley Cyrus attends The Women's Cancer Research Fund's An Unforgettable Evening Benefit Gala at the Beverly Wilshire Four Seasons Hotel on February 28, 2019 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)
Liam Hemsworth and Miley Cyrus attends The Women's Cancer Research Fund's An Unforgettable Evening Benefit Gala at the Beverly Wilshire Four Seasons Hotel on February 28, 2019 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

Liam, meanwhile, wasn’t as prepared when doorstepped by a reporter in Byron Bay, Australia yesterday. When queried about the split, the 29-year-old actor said: “You don’t understand what it’s like. I don’t want to talk about it, mate.”

Understandably, things are still incredibly raw for Liam, especially in light of the fact that Miley was snapped smooching her travelling buddy, Kaitlynn Carter, over the weekend. The 30-year-old star of The Hills reboot also recently split from her partner, Brody Jenner. Luckily for them, they weren’t legally married.

SIGNS A MARRIAGE is OVER...

Sometimes, it may seem the easier option to just ignore your niggling gut, bottle up the feelings and sleepwalk through the rest of your married life. But that’s just it — life is short and (at the risk of sounding like a bumper sticker) it’s not a dress rehearsal. Therefore, consider the following.

  • Are you happier with or without your partner? This isn’t quite the same as “do the good times outweigh the bad?” You could be going through the worst time in the world and still feel nurtured, loved and supported by your partner, and vice versa. To break it down to brass tacks: what’s the feeling when the key goes in the front door? Does your gut do a little skip, or does it sink under the floorboards? If you feel neither, there is another way of weighing up your relationship; there should be five positive interactions for each negative interaction. Worth remembering.

  • There are some other red flags or indicators that may be worth some contemplation — apart from bouts of adultery. For example, do you still touch each other? While sex is obviously important in a relationship, so is incidental touching such as hand holding, hugging, and the odd cheeky pat on the bum — all of it is necessary for a feeling of connectivity.

  • Do you still listen to each other? We’re not just talking the perfunctory heeding of day-to-day orders, but amusing anecdotes that mean something to each other. Are you still interested in hearing what your partner has to say?

  • Does the thought of packing a bag and fleeing far, far away make you feel free? Well, then it’s probably time to consider couples therapy. If your partner is in denial, or refuses to attend therapy with you, that is another sign your relationship has run its course. If you both attend therapy and it doesn’t change anything, well, at least you know you’ve both tried.

Annie Lavin, a psychology lecturer and relationship coach, has this to offer regarding a relationship on the wane: “People can leave a relationship or marriage for any number of reasons, but it generally happens when their love needs are no longer being met within their current relationship.

“Relationship breakdown can be very traumatic; consider seeking the help of a relationship coach or therapist to support you through the decision making process.”

For those of you out there still willing to make it work, Lavin adds: “Assess the health of your current relationship at least once a year. You can do this by completing a ‘relationship check-up’ with a qualified relationship coach to identify areas of strength and challenge in your relationship.

“Couples find these results provides them with useful suggestions to enhance their relationship skills and support the maintenance of their relationship. Focusing on what you can do as a couple to improve your relationship can breathe new life into it.”

Annie Lavin is based in Dublin and works with people face-to-face and remotely. For further details visit therelationshipcoach.ie.

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