Your marriage may not be perfect, but all relationships have issues and you are content and happy with your situation. Your spouse isn’t and has asked for a divorce. By all accounts, you are probably shocked by the admission and don’t understand why. Your partner might complain now and then about things, but who doesn’t complain a little?

You may feel emotions of anger and resentment toward your spouse for not sharing these ill feelings with you before asking for a divorce but haven’t fallen out of love and still would like to salvage and hopefully strengthen the marriage.

Feel free to heed the following five tips as guidance toward strengthening your marriage and preventing divorce.

  1. Connect with your spouse every day: You’re busy. We understand that, but devoting time and affection toward your spouse can make all the difference. Even it’s for only 15 minutes, spend some extra quality time in bed in the morning, sing, dance or choose from a myriad of other options to reaffirm your love for each other.
  2. Compliment your spouse daily: Your spouse may feel embarrassed and you may feel anxious, but sending compliments your partner’s way, in private or in public, often has positive results.
  3. Stop letting yourself go: Put more effort into your mental and physical appearance. Whether that means eating better, following self-help guides, throwing away the dirty and ratty pajamas, getting in the gym or practicing yoga, your spouse will appreciate the effort.
  4. Communicate effectively: From financial ups and downs to expressing changes you’d like to see made in the relationship and the bedroom, poor communication is the root of all evils. Learn to effectively communicate your frustrations and your goals to your partner to work toward solutions together and in agreement.
  5. Spend time together and apart: In long-term and happy marriages, couples do things together. You may differ in many aspects, but there are a few things that brought you together — access those memories and re-enter it into the relationship. Conversely, you and your partner don’t have to love all the same things. Time apart to focus on your own hobbies and activities can also strengthen a relationship as everyone needs time to themselves. Happy relationships understand this and find a balance.

Lastly, you and your partner must agree to say “I love you” every day. Even if you two are feeling resentful, saying those three words, partnered with other loving gestures, even if the gestures are small, will strengthen your relationship over time, and hopefully, quell the feelings of wanting to divorce.