How do we know if we should stay together or call it off? Think about it. Roughly half of all first marriages end in divorce. The divorce rate for second and third marriages is substantially higher. Then we have all the committed relationships in which the partners didn’t get married. It is virtually impossible to calculate how high their separation rate is. All of this adds up to make it quite reasonable to ponder the sustainability of our relationships. But…how do we know? Are we meant to be?
Are We Meant to Be? Common Reasons Why Relationships End
Of course, major crises like infidelity or abuse (physical and/or emotional) are all too common. But, in such cases, the stakes usually feel higher and more obvious. But what about those times when something just doesn’t feel right but it’s not so simple to identify?
Loss of Communication: Are we meant to be?
Without steady, healthy communication, a relationship grows more vulnerable by the day. It is virtually impossible to navigate tough paths without the benefit of productive communication styles.
A Crisis Has Shifted the Dynamics
It might be a job loss, a death in the family, or a variety of other unexpected traumas. Whatever the root cause, the end result may eventually be distance and detachment. This one can sort of sneak up on us.
Boredom or Staleness
It’s cliché but it’s true. Variety is the spice of life and the spice of life partners. Perhaps the most common area into which boredom can creep is intimacy. Poor communication can lay the groundwork for staleness.
Loss of Compatibility
Love can be enduring. Compatibility, on the other hand, is fluid and ever-evolving. It requires our vigilant attention to monitor and maintain.
Should You Stay or Should You Go? Are We Meant to Be?(5 Questions to Ask Yourself)
1. How’s our sex life?
Of course, there is much more to a relationship than sex. That said, sex is really, really important. It not only brings pleasure and deepens bonds. It also serves as a very useful barometer for gauging where a relationship is at. And remember, intimacy goes far beyond a single sex act.
2. Do we have shared interests?
FYI: Scrolling on your phone doesn’t count as a shared interest. Communicate regularly to find new and stimulating ways to grow and learn as a couple.
3. Do we have shared goals?
Staying present is crucial to relationship success. This does not mean, though, that we don’t talk about and plan for the future. Shared goals create excitement, teamwork, and anticipation.
4. Do we each have fulfilling independent interests, goals, and lives?
Codependence is a relationship killer. An uneven dynamic is also a relationship killer. Balance is the goal and a big part of that is developing strong lives outside your relationship. It is all that much more exciting to reconnect with your partner after spending quality time with friends (or solo).
5. How well and how often do we communicate?
As stated above, healthy communication acts as a bulwark against relationship vulnerability. Commit to the never-ending process of adapting your communication style to each new development.
Couples Counseling: Getting an Outside Opinion on Whether We are Meant to Be
A relationship is an ongoing process. It is a journey more so than a destination. Therefore, it only makes sense that we’d need a roadmap on occasion. Emotions can cloud our vision and skew our perception. With the benefit of an unbiased guide, therapy can bring much-needed clarity. Daunting questions become less of a challenge. Patterns are identified and solutions feel far more possible. There is no shame in asking for help when your connection with your partner becomes a struggle. If you need guidance about the future of your relationship, it’s just a phone call away. Please reach out for a consultation soon.