You meet a guy/girl. You’re both ecstatically happy. You’re sure he’s the one. But, as time goes on, things just don’t work out. But why?
Answering this question may allow us to avoid repeating the same relationship mistakes again and again, as so many do. We talked to our married, single and commited friends to get their insight. In hopes of learning from our mistakes, here’s 10 common reasons relationships break down.
1. Unrealistic Expectations
Before the relationship even begins, we’re surrounded by media that perpetuates the myth of two people meeting, falling in love and living happily ever after. This makes a great story line, but leaves out the part where relationships take work, time and effort to succeed.
2. Being too needy.
If you need your partner’s attention all the time and need to be with them 24/7 you’re not in love. A lasting love provides some breathing room for both of you to still have your own lives.
3. A Failure to Communicate
Any relationship whether it’s romantic, platonic or work-based needs communication. If you don’t tell each other what’s going on, what you’re thinking, how you’re feeling or what you expect, the other person is inevitably going to disappoint you. Open communication, even if it’s sometimes unpleasant, ensures you both know what your partner wants and needs.
4. Lack of Trust.
Some argue this is the biggest issue. After 20 years of studying marriages, scientist John Gottman argues that when trust dies, relationships fail. In The Science of Trust, he argues that if negative events are not fully processed, we fill in the information gaps with our own ideas. If we don’t trust our partner, the motives and actions we attribute to them are coloured with a negativity that grows eroding trust further.
5. Lack of Respect
One reader responded that lack of respect is the root of all relationship problems. No respect for your partner leads to everything from poor communication to infidelity. It’s the minimum requirement when it comes to making a relationship work.
6. Unwilling to Compromise.
This can also be seen as the desire to always be right. In some people it comes out as always being certain that their opinion is right. However expressed, your partner’s not going to appreciate always doing things your way. For a relationship to succeed, you’ve got to have the ability to adapt to another point of view.
7. Focusing on the Negative.
Regan Ross, of PEI responded to our question saying instead of a wife getting mad at the mud on her husband’s boots, she could focus on the fact they brought him home safely. Getting caught up in the negative makes every day harder…especially when someone else is always on the receiving end.
8. Being Defensive
This may be one of the hardest habits to break. None of us like being criticized. From the time we’re kids, our instinct is to come up with excuses or deny. In a mature and successful relationship, criticism should be constructive and should be listened to in the same manner.
It takes two to tango, you can’t always lead, and yours aren’t the only needs to be met.
10. Not making time.
Where you spend your time shows your priorities. If you’re always working late, your partner will get the message that work is more important. Make an effort for your partner and your relationship, or you may risk losing them.