9 Signs Your Marriage Is Worth Saving, According To Experts

"If the relationship was vibrant at one point, with the right guidance, those feelings can be captured once again.”
04/22/2016 02:22pm ET
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Just because you've lost that spark doesn't mean your marriage is doomed.

The honeymoon phase was never going to last forever. Between parenting stresses, money issues and meddling in-laws, marriage troubles are pretty much inevitable.

But don't throw in the towel just yet. Here are ten signs your marriage is worth saving, according to experts.

1. You're tormented with doubt about leaving.
"Chances are, if you can't sleep at night because you feel so torn about your thoughts about leaving, it means that there are some valid reasons to consider staying and fixing what isn't working. When people are done, they get to a point where there's no turning back. Feeling overwhelmed with ambivalence simply means you haven't been giving the positive aspects of your marriage enough weight. Shine a light on what has worked in your marriage and get some help." -- Michele Weiner-Davis, a relationship expert and the best-selling author of Divorce Busting and The Sex-Starved Marriage

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Alison Patton, a licensed attorney and mediator, says that most couples experience relationship challenges after having kids. 

2. Strain on the relationship can be attributed to the kids.

"If you have children together and have drifted apart, this is not in and of itself a reason to get divorced. Children kill romance. It's a fact. You're tired, stressed and distracted once you become a parent. Most couples go through hard times after having kids. The ones who stay together realize this normal stage of marriage isn't a deal breaker, it's a challenge to be addressed. As long as there's still some respect and love, a marriage can survive. Realize you'll still have to be connected to your spouse after divorce because of your kids, so there's every incentive to make the marriage work." -- Alison Patton, a licensed attorney and mediator

3. You still feel respected in the marriage.

"A sign that your relationship is worth saving is if you still respect your spouse and feel respected in the marriage." -- Elisabeth LaMotte, a psychotherapist and the founder of the DC Counseling and Psychotherapy Center

4. You're both willing to put in the work.

"Sometimes, a couple drifts apart because neither person put in enough effort to keep the relationship healthy. If both people are willing to do the work to rebuild and maintain the relationship, and if they still love and respect one-another, the marriage is worth salvaging." -- Marcia Sirota, a psychiatrist and founder of the Ruthless Compassion Institute

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If you can remember the qualities that made you fall in love to begin with -- and still see those in your spouse -- the marriage may be worth saving, says Nikki Martinez, a counselor and adjunct professor. 

5. You can't picture your life without each other.

"If you are still able to see hints of what made you fall in love with the person in the first place, and you cannot picture your life without them, this relationship is worth working on. You owe it to yourself, and to each other, to try and address what is causing issues, and see if they can be fixed." -- Nikki Martinez, a counselor and adjunct professor

6. The spark is gone -- but you think you can bring it back.

"If you clearly love your partner but just need to add some spark back in the relationship, your marriage may be worth saving. There are many ways to do this, and every marriage hits periods of lulls or monotony. That doesn’t mean throwing in the towel is the best answer. Little gestures every day build connection and are the glue that hold a relationship together. If you have hit a lull, discuss it with your partner and talk about ways that you can infuse some excitement into your relationship." -- Leslie Petruk, the director of The Stone Center for Counseling & Leadership in Charlotte, North Carolina

7. Your problems aren't specific to the relationship.

"When things become challenging or frustrating or unsatisfying in a marriage, it is common to develop the fantasy that there must be something out there that’s better. And the truth is, there probably is something out there that’s easier or more exciting or more fun -- in the beginning. But, typically, the challenges you are facing in your marriage are ones that will eventually surface with someone else as well, so it is worth connecting with a professional to see if you can revive the relationship." --Elisabeth LaMotte

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Still have hobbies in common? That's a sign you have what it takes to make the marriage work, says psychiatrist Marcia Sirota.

8. You still enjoy spending time together.

"Sometimes a couple grows apart over the years because of poor communication. If both people want the same things in life, enjoy doing various activities together and get along on a day-to-day basis, and if they’re willing to work on improving their communication, the marriage is worth salvaging." --Marcia Sirota

9. At some point in your marriage, you had "it."

"Even though things might seem bleak right now, if early in your marriage or, for that matter, at any time in your marriage, you had good feelings, a solid connection, passion and so on, there's reason to believe it can be rekindled. I've worked with people who say that, even early on, they never felt a spark or a connection. They married for all the wrong reasons. If the relationship was vibrant at one point, with the right guidance, those feelings can be captured once again." -- Michele Weiner-Davis

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