Arguments are a part of every relationship. No one is 100% happy, all the time. There is, however, a distinction between normal back and forth arguments and reaching a critical stage in a failing relationship.
Here’s how to know if your relationship is in trouble.
You’re Always Wrong
When your relationship is in trouble there’s always hot button issues at the root of the problem. Since you can’t continuously focus on these core issues everyday, the anger and frustration begin to take other forms.
Something’s wrong and they want to vent and argue. So that’s what they do.
They’re upset and are essentially trying to pick a fight. If you feel like you’re always wrong and no matter what your decision or opinion it’s going to be wrong, the relationship is in trouble.
If you can identify with the phrase “walking on eggshells”, you’ve reached a critical stage.
Decline In Intimacy
Our need for intimacy and physical contact is more than just sex. It’s holding hands, a touch on the shoulder, or simply walking over and embracing. Intimacy is what solidifies the bond between two people.
When there’s a noticeable decline in intimacy, it can diminish your need or desire to continue the relationship. It’s also a contributing factor in many affairs.
Related: 10 ways to cope with anxiety
You’re Keeping Secrets
It always starts small. It could be something as small and insignificant as spending a few dollars a day on something for yourself. You choose not to tell them, and the problem grows from there.
You can correlate the amount and frequency of the secrets with how unhappy you’ve become. Several months down the line you may find yourself on secret coffee dates with a co-worker that you’ve decided not to share with your partner.
This can snowball into secret email or text relationships that cause further distance in the relationship.
You’re Repeating The Same Argument
If you’re stuck in the loop of a repeating argument without being able to reach a resolution it’s not something that can fix itself. Sometimes the issue is small, but important, and other times it can involve personal beliefs that divide you.
If you’re unable to move forward and reach a resolution on a recurring argument, you may need the help of a marriage or relationship counselor to reach an acceptable compromise.
You’re Not The First To Know Anymore
Remember when the relationship was in the initial stages? You were each other’s best friend, and the first to know when something significant happened. You couldn’t wait to share, and get their reaction.
You begin to drift down the order of importance when there’s a relationship fracture. It can be due to a lack of trust, or they already know what your response will be and they’re avoiding confrontation.
If you feel like you’re becoming the “last to know”, something’s wrong.
See Also: Five habits that make you unhappy
Letting Themselves Go
When you’ve been in a relationship for several years, it’s a reasonable expectation for the attempts to impress you physically to diminish. It’s normal. You get comfortable with one another and you aren’t constantly concerned about looking perfect.
You and your partner cross the line of normal, and okay, when you stop caring and in a very passive aggressive way are trying to repel one another. When hygiene and appearance reach a critical low in the relationship, it can be a subconscious effort to avoid intimacy and physical contact.
Trying To Ignore Problems
Constant fighting is taxing physically, mentally and emotionally. Everyone will reach a point where they simply “don’t want to fight anymore”. You’re both acknowledging there are serious problems, but you can’t reach a resolution and choose to avoid the problem entirely.
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