This month, June 2014, marks the five-year anniversary of the end of the period between December 2007 and June 2009 that the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) officially dubbed the Great Recession. While we certainly have seen some economic recovery in both corporate profits and the stock market, the feeling on Main Street remains pessimistic. Family relationships are buckling under the strain. But, are economic or relational deficits more responsible?
It is true that stagnation in both unemployment and housing markets continue to heavily weigh on working and middle class America. In fact, a recent NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll showed that the majority of American adults (57%) believe that the U.S. economy is still in a recession despite what the NBER reports. These economic strains have significantly impacted family life.
Countless couples cite financial problems as a primary reason for their family struggles—especially marital strain. It is difficult to listen to the stories of sorrow that come from many of these couples.
These stories, however, have led me to believe that relational rather than economic deficits are the truer source of our sorrows.