Many things can make you doubt your partner or relationships in general. But arguments, suspicion or irritation do not always have to mean the end of a relationship. According to author and psychotherapist Kathy McCoy, there is much to save in relationships, but there are also signs that point to a possible breakup.
Award-winning author and psychotherapist McCoy shares his experiences from his own couples therapy sessions in the US Psychology today. Because according to the psychotherapist, a rut, irritation or argument does not always have to mean the end of a relationship. On the contrary, McCoy explains that some are on the verge of divorce and yet found each other after couples therapy and changes here and there.
Seven ominous signs in a relationship
But McCoy also saw plenty of couples who were ultimately unable to save the relationship. And a number of signals turned out to be disastrous for a relationship. The psychotherapist highlights seven signs, from which, according to her, you can conclude that a relationship is in danger of running aground.
1. Unrealistic expectations
According to McCoy, an ideal image of a relationship is not always realistic. She points out that the ‘perfect relationship’ does not exist and we are all human. For example, the psychotherapist mentions an example where the woman “wanted to be treated like a princess.” The partner proved unable to meet such a requirement, also financially. His girlfriend wanted gifts and romantic surprises for almost every occasion. That while she didn’t give anything back or show gratitude in return.
Holding on to unrealistic expectations and hoping for a ‘perfect picture’, according to McCoy, only prevents a person from finding an imperfect but loving relationship.
2. Uncompromising attitude
In other words, the ‘my will is the law’ principle, where we assume that only you yourself are right. We do not consider other people’s views or feelings. According to McCoy, an unwillingness to compromise can lead to contempt. You even look down on your partner. If you are not willing to compromise at times, the chances of a breakup only increase.
3. Lack of conflict
We can sometimes think that arguments are a sign of “struggling” in a relationship. But McCoy argues that little or no arguing can indicate emotional detachment and an unwillingness to resolve a conflict. Anger and anger pile up without a fight. According to the therapist, it is precisely the pent-up emotions that make things stick.
4. Difference in sexual desire and unwillingness to compromise
It is not surprising that we do not all have the same sexual fantasies. But in a healthy relationship, couples are often able to work things out.
But there are of course cases where these wishes diverge completely. The most complicated scenario is a relationship where one person doesn’t want sex at all and the other does. If the differences are so great that it ultimately affects the love and connection between two partners, then according to McCoy, there is a threat of an impending breakup.
Relationship problems that arise from addiction are difficult to resolve, according to McCoy. And according to the therapist, it involves all kinds of addiction. Not just drug or alcohol addiction, but also gambling or cheating. Broken promises, betrayal or damaged trust and hope make surviving a relationship together a huge challenge.
6. Negative expectations
According to the therapist, research shows that suspicion or doubt in advance is a bad start for a relationship. As an example, she mentions someone who has been cheated on several times in other relationships, and who has also destroyed new relationships with his jealousy and mistrust. If you enter a relationship with negative expectations, the chances of a breakup are all the greater.
7. Lack of affection and appreciation
Some couples eventually become roommates and stop showing small but important forms of affection. Think cuddling, kissing, holding hands, shared humor or enjoying experiences together. In addition, a lack of appreciation or gratitude can result in constant criticism, blame and pointing out each other’s shortcomings.
Instead, you should emphasize the positive qualities of your partner and feel grateful that this person, no matter how imperfect, is in your life. According to McCoy, it can make a big difference in your relationship.
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