For as much envying as we do of other couples, the truth is - even the most wonderful, ‘perfect’ couple can end up divorced.
We’ve all seen it: Two genuinely great people start off head-over-heels in love, but then somewhere along the way (despite everything looking rosy on the surface) they shock their family and friends and announce their marriage is over. This unleashes a bloodbath of sorts and plunges those who love them into unhappiness because they feel forced to take sides.
What happened? They seemed so happy together!
“Despite how happy they started off as a couple, the pair was likely hiding an unending cycle of unhappiness within their relationship. And after keeping that all below the surface for too long, they felt like separating was their only option,” says Mumbai-based counsellor Anita Singh, who has helped dozens of couples bring love and passion back into their marriages.
This isn’t unusual at all.
“Many couples struggle to maintain a ‘happy relationship,’ but their marriage still falls apart,” adds Kolkata-based psychologist and counsellor Polly Sengupta.
Below are 11 bad habits partners often do not address that slowly, but surely, erode love and connection between them. Don’t let your marriage suffer the same fate:
1. Not being on the same page with each other. Often couples lack alignment on the things that matter most, and feel like their own personal goals/feelings are the most important ones to focus on.
2. Not meeting each other’s needs. Every person has unique needs they hope their partner will fulfill. But often couples fail to speak up about those needs or presume their partner’s needs are the same as their own.
3. Turning your attention (and affection) elsewhere. Whether by having an affair or pouring all of your attention into the kids, one or both of you checked out and sought attention and affection elsewhere. After that, it’s easy to completely give up.
4.Not dealing with things head on. You know things are off, but it’s easier to do nothing about it. You avoid facing the truth or handling the real issues in your marriage.
5. Letting disconnect become the norm. This is when couples start to say things like “I love you, but I am no longer ‘in love’ with you.”
6. Letting stress control your lives.Life is hectic and many couples accidently let stress (big and small) come between them. But once stress takes over and fractures togetherness, it can feel incredibly difficult (if not impossible) to get it back.
7. Allowing intimacy to dwindle. The affection, connection and tenderness you once shared dries up from lack of effort, leaving you merely roommates.
8.Fighting to win. When you’re more focused on ‘being right’ than truly connecting, attempts to ‘talk about it’ usually make things worse.
9. Neglecting each other. Blowing each other off, forgetting to follow through on things promised, failing to pay attention. Neither of you necessarily meant to make other things more important than your spouse, but you did.
10. Harbouring resentment for each other. Unspoken or unresolved resentment festers and severely poisons a once healthy relationship. One partner (or even both) can think: You did this thing to me, and I can’t get over it.
11. Criticising each other. When you nitpick each other in your minds and out loud, soon you only see your partner’s faults. After awhile, complaining and criticizing become a comfortable habit which compromises your willingness to communicate and interact in a compassionate, supportive way.