Should a person who struggles with emotional and psychological issues get married?


#1

I know i ask a LOT of these kind of questions, but I promise I won’t try to be selfish and turn this discussion about me. I just wonder if people who struggle with emotional and psych issues, as well as things like empathy and maturity, should refrain from being married?

I’m asking this because people who struggle with these things often end up hurting others in relationships and in the case where this happens, should a person who is more likley to hurt someone stay single instead of getting married?

For example if a man struggles with anger, would the smart thing be for him to stay single rather than getting married and potentially hurting his spouse, even if he doesn’t mean to?


#2

I do not think that emotional or psychological issues are an automatic disqualifier for being in a relationship. I do, however, believe that it is the responsibility of the person with said issues to do everything in their power to learn to control/live with said issues in a responsible manner before in engaging in a serious relationship.

I also believe that if one is going to get involved in a relationship, that one must be honest & up-front about said issues with the perspective mate.


#3

This is not a yes or no answer.

It depends upon the individuals and the issues.

Well, the smart thing would be for him to work with a counselor to overcome his issues in preparation for whatever vocation God has in mind for him.


#4

I believe it’s a matter of personal choice, but as long as the person is honest with the other who they want to marry it should be okay. If one is very angry and is worried they may harm their spouse, then perhaps it’s best they should not marry. Either way, it is a good idea to ask a therapist or marriage counselor.


#5

It depends on:

  • The severity of the emotional or psychological problem;
  • The affected partner’s willingness and ability to manage the problem;
  • The other partner’s willingness and ability to accomodate the affected partner’s needs;
  • Both partners’ willingness to maintain a healthy marriage.

#6

There is not magic bullet here and it very much depends on the people involved. The best preparation for marriage is to learn how to be selfless instead of selfish. The more giving you are to others, the more other focus you become, the less struggle you will have if and when you marry. It takes a lifetime for this. Remember that marriage is a journey and no two people who enter into it are perfect and have things they need to work on but when they marry, they should work on growth together. Going back to the example of anger, if someone has a quick temper or anger, it would be better for them to work on that before hand. If someone is dating someone with a quick temper, they should think twice about it or wait. The best think for you is to focus on becoming the best marriage partner instead of looking for the best marriage partner.


#7

None of use is “perfect”. We all have shortcoming and issues within ourselves.Emotional instability is becoming more prevalent in our society. A individual whose understands that they may have emotional problems that may harm, a permanant union in the Church should, without hesitation, consult a medical professional, priest or minister, fully seeking a way to successfully alleviate those issues that may case future harm or damage to a marriage. The Church has a pre-marital process that seeks to discover any instabilities that may interfere with a marriage. The support and direction of the church has come a long ways towards supporting and guiding those contemplating marriage. Before, during, and even with failed marriages the Church has been wonderful in their help. Do not hesitate to talk with your parish priest or your local Diocese Headquarters for help. Also, get on your knees every day asking God for support in your daily needs.


#8

That's not a question that can be answered across the board. However, if the person entering into marriage struggles to the point that after some serious discernment they cannot consent to the vocation of marriage and what it entails then, no, they should not get married. It would not be fair to the other person. This is my opinion. I am saying this is an extreme case. For instance if someone struggles with empathy to the point where they cannot feel any compassion if their spouse is in the hospital that would be an issue, etc. I lived through a "marriage" with someone like that and it became highly abusive very quickly. But if the psych issues are not that extreme and both partners are willing to work through them with God's help then let God do the rest and bless them both.


#9

Wonderful and insightful response. I agree with you totally. I have also been through mental abuse in a marriage. (I am a male) and my children and I are fine by this divorce. The Church helped and supported us fully and we are forever greatful. Peace


#10

[quote="jimperu, post:9, topic:311195"]
Wonderful and insightful response. I agree with you totally. I have also been through mental abuse in a marriage. (I am a male) and my children and I are fine by this divorce. The Church helped and supported us fully and we are forever greatful. Peace

[/quote]

Thank you Jim, I too, have a male friend going through a divorce from an abusive wife. I think the problem of abusive wives is often not one that we speak enough about. I apologize for this on behalf of all of us if your issue has been minimized in any way by those of us women who have been speaking out about domestic violence at the hands of men. May God bless you and St. Rita of Cascia pray a prayer of intercession for your healing.


#11

Thanks for the answer. I guess the thing I hear a lot of people worry about though is that their spouse will leave them if they findout they have these issues or it becomes a major problem rather than try to work it out and so they say they’d rather not be in a relationship than be in one and have their spouse leave. So how would people avoid these feelings, and is it okay to use as a reason not to get married?


#12

I think these are all things that need to be worked out before a couple says their vows. Than proper discernment needs to be made.


#13

One thing here that I might caution you is that just like I am saying about informing a potential spouse about any psychological issues, one should also form a potential community. A community will then discern as will the individual if this vocation is correct for this person.


#14

wrong thread :expressionless:


#15

Ooops…:shrug:


#16

I'd guess that every man who is civilized struggles with anger.


#17

It sounds like rejecting marriage to avoid being rejected in marriage.

Some people can tolerate this. If they’re satisfied with their decision, so be it.

But it’s a great way to stay lonely. If you live for fear of failure, what do you expect to gain?


#18

[quote="benjammin, post:11, topic:311195"]
Thanks for the answer. I guess the thing I hear a lot of people worry about though is that their spouse will leave them if they findout they have these issues

[/quote]

If one has a mental illness, it is necessary to disclose this fact to the potential spouse (sooner rather than later) and the pastor preparing the couple for marriage.

[quote="benjammin, post:11, topic:311195"]
how would people avoid these feelings, and is it okay to use as a reason not to get married?

[/quote]

One need not have a reason to not marry. If one does not feel called to marry, or capable of marrying due to a mental illness, then one should not marry. But, if one simply has the garden variety character flaws common to all humanity-- well, then no one would marry if they felt they had to be perfect first. Spouses are called to sacrficial love, which often times means overlooking or forgiving the shortcomings of others.


#19

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.