What is it about a burning building that makes people stare in wonder? A marriage gone wrong is very much like a burning building.

Love ignites passion, passion ignites flame and if not carefully tended and maintained the fire can run wild, destroying everything in its wake. Ego, greed, anger, hate, mistrust, carelessness, deafness, sloth, jealousy, infidelity are a few of the fuels that feed the fire that burns down the house of love. It can flame in an instant or slow burn depending on the personalities of the caretakers.

What remains is often not worth saving as there is so much damage left. It’s integral to properly repair the house by opening it up to thorough  inspection and seeking the cause or causes of the blaze. If these were minor, then what remains has to be gutted and rebuilt, albeit, often without the same passion that built the original house.

Sometimes, the property is remade for the better. The original foundation has to be very strong for any kind of real success in this venture. Where there was a residence surrounded by weak support boards, leaky plumbing and faulty wiring, with honest communication the builders can accurately state what is needed to make the accommodations better,  a stronger, safer structure where the new owners can flourish.  

Couples will often stay in a burning house of love for many reasons, children, financial security, convenience and for other dark reasons such as power, obsession and control. In these instances, the key players can get seriously charred while the onlookers suffer from smoke inhalation. They survive, but all are unhealthy and scarred.

We all recognize the signs when our refuge starts to singe but for many it’s too hard to yell the house is on fire. My tendency is to scream, scratch, crawl and get help when my asylum is at risk. When that fails, when you have gone hoarse, when the acrid smoke of lost love burns your lungs, it’s time to run, not walk away. If not for your survival but to get help for the people who refuse to leave the house aflame.  And, when you run, pray. Pray the intensity of the heat won’t burn your back, that the heat won’t cause further damage.

One day if you are lucky, if you made good choices you will look back and appreciate what a beautiful house it once was, how you thought that house would stand forever.

Try not to look when you’re standing in the ashes.

There is no remedy for love but to love more.

~Henry David Thoreau