Early Signs Your Marriage Is Falling Apart
Insight from Our Orange County Divorce Attorneys
While many marital relationships last forever, several begin crumbling after a few years, and close to half of all marriages in the US end in a divorce. The quirks, behaviors, and habits that people find endearing about each other at the start of a life journey may sometimes begin to feel like a burden as the years go by. Below are early warning signs that your marriage may be falling apart. If you notice these, you should take an active role and attempt to resolve them before a divorce becomes inevitable.
1. You Both Used to Talk a Lot, but Now You Hardly Do
Communication is the foundation of a healthy relationship. In a strong marriage, either partner will want to talk to each other about their daily lives, goals, memories, etc. The need for consulting, arguing, and listening to each other’s opinions is the basis of an active connection between married couples. If you don’t remember the last time you felt like talking to your husband or wife, it may be time to work together and change this behavior.
2. Contempt Is Slowly Taking the Place of Mutual Respect
When your partner talks, do you roll your eyes, sneer or make caustic comments? People who have a healthy relationship value each other’s opinions and thoughts and do not mind listening to the other’s viewpoint with patience and understanding. This is even more important when they disagree.
No matter how annoying your partner’s argument may be, they deserve your attention, time, understanding, and respect. If you feel that you and your partner are becoming intolerant of each other’s feelings or thoughts, chances are that your marriage is getting into trouble.
3. You Are Both Becoming Rigid in Your Arguments
Do you rush to defend your viewpoint during every argument with your spouse? Do your discussions become endless sagas of heated comments in which neither of you concedes, but only protects their own position?
A highly defensive and rigid stance signals that you do not want to participate in a fair discussion with your partner. If every debate leaves you justifying your actions or behavior, it is possible that the foundation of your marriage is under stress.
4. Intimacy Is Rapidly Fading
Intimacy is integral to the close bond shared by a married couple. Intimacy does not mean only sexual intimacy, but also romance, handholding, and cuddling.
If you can’t remember the last time you snuggled up to your partner or had a date night, you may be in the midst of a withering marriage. An intimate bond adds a higher dimension of closeness and affection to a married relationship, and the lack of it could be quite detrimental to it in the long-term.
5. Every Little Effort for the Spouse Feels Like too Much Effort
If making the tiniest of effort for your spouse feels like a huge burden, it may be a sign of trouble. In a healthy marriage, you feel motivated to care for each other. Tending to a spouse who is ill, or planning a sumptuous breakfast spread seem like activities born out of concern for each other’s happiness and well-being.
6. You Start Shutting Off or Disconnecting Emotionally
The lack of empathy is another sign of a collapsing marriage. A marriage is made of two people, each of whom has an equal role in driving the relationship forward. But what happens if you stop empathizing with your partner? Sometimes you may start feeling that your spouse’s problems are not yours and begin distancing yourself from him or her.
Your partner might try to connect with you or share some issues, but you don’t want to get involved or give your opinion. This usually happens when you feel that you both do not value each other’s views enough.
7. Two Negatives Don’t Make a Positive
Positive interaction between married couples is respectful and cheerful. Arguments will happen sometimes, but the couple is not demeaning or scornful of each other.
However, if the arguments with your spouse seem more like quarrels than the airing of strong opinions, your marriage could be developing some very early cracks.
A fight does not mean that there’s a problem in your marriage, but constant negativity and hurtful arguments may indicate that you are losing the basic affection and regard for each other.
8. Your Spouse’s Absence Makes You Happier
Most happily married men or women await their spouse’s return from work and cherish each other’s company. Two partners can also have separate hobbies and friends, but at the end of the day, they want to share quality time with their partner.
But if you feel relieved or less stressed when your spouse is away or not around you, it could be a sign that your relationship is starting to fizzle out.
9. You Both Don’t Look Forward to a Brighter Future
Do you find yourself reminiscing about past activities that you shared with your partner but have no recent memories of happy moments and togetherness? A married couple often makes plans for their future and looks forward to mutual growth and a prosperous and happy life together. However, you may be increasingly feeling that the best time in your marriage is over or is quickly fading.
10. When Two Worlds Collide
Do you withhold stuff from your partner? Are you suspicious of your partner or unwilling to tell him or her about your life’s details? Honesty is the key to developing a robust married bond and secrets can be devastating to any relationship.
The reasons for wanting to keep things to yourself could be many but no matter the cause, a couple who would rather hide their feelings and actions than share them may slowly nearing the end of their life as a married couple.
Not all marriages are made in heaven. It may be time to take a good hard look at your relationship with your spouse. Pay heed to the early warning signs of a failing marriage and take firm steps towards restoring the old charm and the warmth in your marital relationship once again.
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