The Power Card In Marital Relationships

It is a common belief in western philosophy that one must first love oneself in order to love another person in a married relationship. In reality, a lot of encouragements tell us to be selfish and not display the cards in our hands, to control our emotions and keep them hidden, and to “don’t show how much you love” when it comes to spending time together, being affectionate, or doing good deeds.

an attitude and statement that says, “I don’t need you. “We appear to be modeling narcissism in our marriage in certain ways. This pattern also holds true in other interpersonal interactions. In groups, the most conceited and egocentric men and women are frequently the ones who are most praised and emulated, despite the fact that they exhibit the fewest emotions among their peers.

It seems that there are other people in our society who are also fooled by narcissism in a married partnership. Despite their outward appearance as loving partners, wives, or even lovers, narcissists are actually quite poor at maintaining marital relationships, according to a recent University of Amsterdam study. Nevertheless, despite the general public’s favorable opinion of narcissists, in terms of performance, narcissists really impede communication, which has a detrimental impact on the results of their marriages.

In light of the current high divorce rates, we would like to investigate why marriage can cause otherwise healthy relationships to fail. Should lies like maintaining control and the reins of power be held accountable? How may anger and poison arise from the power relationships in a marriage or other relationship?

Who holds power in a marital relationship?

There are a wide range of opinions resulting from the study of power dynamics in partnerships. Many views about power in marriage contend that control over income, sex, children, the home, food, entertainment, one’s body, and other aspects of one’s life are necessary for a woman to maintain her power in a marriage. Others think that since the guy is the family’s natural leader, the man should give up control of any power issues in the marriage. The wife must be the calm, meek, obedient follower, and the man must be the egotistical, brilliant guy.


According to this theory, power is more significant in relationships akin to leadership and has also been linked to masculinity. Niccolò Machiavelli states in The Prince, his well-known 16th-century work that the greatest way to gain power is often by manipulation and occasional cruelty: “It is much safer to be feared than loved.”

In the same vein, over the course of 500 years, there have been numerous conventional relationship gurus, philosophers, and believers who have held the view that for a man and woman to have a successful relationship, the woman must cede her authority to the man and allow him to take center stage. The bible actually states that a wife must follow her husband’s lead and submit to him at all times. As the Lord so commands, wives, submit to your husbands. —Colossians 3:18–19 Husbands, cherish your wives and do not harbor resentment toward them.

In addition, reputable ladies from the past like Gina Greco and Christine Rose write in The Good Wife’s Guide, Le Menagier de Paris, that a good wife and woman must be unselfish, ignore all of her husband’s wrongdoings, and never divulge his secrets. If he has acted improperly, she should not confront him about it; instead, she should keep her feelings and wishes to him a secret and choose to tolerate his wrongdoings with patience.

The 48 Laws of Power, a national bestseller written by Robert Greene, makes Machiavelli’s concepts look simple. Machiavelli is all over Greene’s work. A couple of his 48 laws are as follows:

Law 3, Conceal Your Intentions.

Law 6, Court Attention at All Costs.

Many people have come to believe that obtaining power necessitates the use of force, deceit, manipulation, and coercion, having been led by centuries of Machiavellian counsel such as the one mentioned above. In order to maintain a lifelong bond, women were actually required to yield to their narcissistic husbands desires. Similar to this, a greater portion of our culture believes that being in a position of authority necessitates this behavior, and that in order for a partnership to succeed, one of us must either abuse our power or allow our partner to abuse it.

Power is effective when used responsibly

A new science of power, however, would show that this is not at all false. In actuality, when power is used appropriately, it can be most effective. The most influential and trustworthy people are those who are used to interacting with and attending to the needs and interests of others. Power and leadership have been the subject of extensive research over many years, and the results indicate that emotional intelligence and empathy are far more significant than using force, deceit, fear, or power plays in relationships.

Returning to the original issue, what causes a perfectly wonderful relationship to fail after marriage, we think the concept of power dynamics in a post-marriage relationship holds the key to the answer. Something about being in a position of authority makes it all about winning, rather than always working toward the larger good. After being married, couples frequently feel entitled, at ease, and confident in the knowledge that their spouse will stick around. As a result, a wide range of rules and duties are established in the partnership. Who chooses when it’s time for sex, who gets to stay out late, who makes money, who puts the kids to bed and stays at home when they’re sick, who decides what matters to spend money on, etc.

How power imbalance can ruin a marital relationship

According to studies, persons who hold positions of authority are more likely to act aggressively, impulsively, and selfishly. They are also less likely to be able to see things from other people’s perspectives. For example, research has shown that those with power in tests are more prone to base their judgments on stereotypes and to ignore the qualities that make other people unique. They also proved to be less accurate in assessing the needs, attitudes, and interests of others. According to a survey, professors with higher authority tended to judge lower authority professors’ opinions more accurately than lower authority professors did their more powerful colleagues.

Therefore, it would appear that the abilities that are most crucial to gaining power (becoming a husband or wife) and successfully raising a family are also the ones that seem to decline with such authority. Relationships with power imbalance eventually cause the relationship to fail.

We recommend the following. Eight Guidelines to Prevent Power Differencies or Even Worse Than Powerlessness in Partnerships: Marriage does not entitle you to control someone else’s time, energy, or means of subsistence. Instead of forcing them to do anything, let them make the decision to do it. A couple can better assess their needs in a relationship by maintaining a healthy power dynamic. Always consider both feelings and thoughts when determining the best course of action, and contribute your two cents, no matter how little.

Remember that your marriage could end if things become worse over time, so don’t take it for granted. Treat your marriage the same way you did during the courting, when you had no idea when you would see them again.

It’s unrealistic to think that your contributions and your spouse’s contributions to the marriage must be equal. Contributions are subjective and depend on the recipient, not the giver, because men and women think and feel differently. Ask instead of assuming, and set an example for others to follow.

Refuse to accept that since you are not good at something, your spouse must always take the lead in your married relationship. If you decide not to, do so consciously, acknowledging and respecting your decision.

In order to maintain power in your married relationship, don’t withhold information, affection, money, or sex. One cannot compel reciprocity. Giving might not always result in receiving, but giving also robs you of the satisfying emotions that come with giving. Similar to this, an unequal distribution of power or wealth inside a marriage can be harmful to it.

Ask for love and support and admit that you both need each other instead of trying to be all-powerful.

The most powerful force is the silent but felt kindness.(If you have a child or a pet, you are aware of their power over you and understand what we mean.)