Marital relationships have endless nuances to them. They are a reflection of the people involved, their shared history and other factors. It can result in a seeming mind-meld where the spouses can read body language in a split second or ongoing incidences where differences surface (which some believe keeps life interesting).
Regardless of the relationship chemistry, the question couples should ask themselves is: “Does it work?” Below are four reasons psychologists believe point to an answer of “no.”
- Not enjoying time together: It may work differently for some, but happy spouses often prefer time with their husband or wife more than with anyone else (kids excepted!). Perhaps it used to be that way earlier in the relationship, but no longer is.
- No conflicts: Fiery relations are exhausting for some, but engagement usually means differing viewpoints that are healthy to debate. A comfortable or detached complacency generally points to a relationship that no longer thoroughly nourishes the spouses.
- Constant criticism: Healthy disagreements are one thing, but dialogue involving ongoing nitpicking over every annoying behavior or bad habit signifies disapproval at the surface and at a more profound level. It is also symptomatic of a loss of attraction.
- Lack of appreciation: There is no such thing as being too grateful for a partner. Conversely, not appreciating them or taking a spouse for granted is a serious problem. It generally is a sign of unhappiness with the spouse and relationship.
Is it time to contemplate a split?
Many divorces occur after recognizing these and other signs. Couples can soldier on as essentially two individuals living separately under the same roof, but that is not a loving partnership that feeds either spouse’s soul. Those interested in a change can discuss how their divorce would look by discussing the matter with an experienced family law attorney. Pre-divorce planning with a family law professional can outline and help you to weigh options for a fair and equitable outcome.