Once you pass the honeymoon stage of your marriage, things start to get real. Bills are not getting paid. You argue all the time. You do not spend as much time together as you used to. You are exhausted.
While these signs do not necessarily mean your marriage is troubled, it does mean you have some work to do. Once your marriage starts to see some stress, you need to work on it. A lot of issues can be resolved with communication. But when a couple fails to communicate, things start to go downhill from there.
Do not ignore your problems and expect your marriage to get better. Things will only go downhill from there. However, that does not mean that your marriage is doomed. You do have some time to recognize the problems you and your partner are facing and work on them. Read on to learn the signs of a failing marriage and what you can do to save it.
Signs of a Failing Marriage
No marriage is perfect. There will be ups and downs, but if you are seeing more and more negativity, your marriage could be on the rocks. Not sure? Here are some signs to look for:
- There is too much criticism. Constructive criticism can be good, but when all you are doing is dishing out nasty comments, then it does not bode well for your marriage. You need compliments and positive interactions to balance things out. In fact, to keep your marriage on good terms, research shows that you need at least five positive interactions to counteract every negative one.
- You have the same argument over and over. Every couple fights. In fact, having arguments (to some degree) can make your marriage happier. That is because you are addressing your issue and not simply ignoring them. But if you are rehashing the same topic over and over, then there is no resolution. You and your spouse will start ignoring each other rather than have the same argument again, and that is not healthy. It means you have both given up, and that does not bode well for your marriage.
- You do not spend time together. You do not need to spend every minute together—in fact, you shouldn’t. But if you are coming up with excuses to not do things together or would rather spend your time with someone else, then you might as well break up.
- There is no more sex. While you do not need to have hot, passionate sex every night, sex should still be on the table if you are both healthy. If you are going months or years without sex, that is a huge red flag. Sex is a healthy part of a romantic relationship, and if you and your spouse are no longer being intimate with each other, then that is a warning sign that needs to be fixed ASAP.
- You think about having an affair. While it is normal to find other people besides your spouse attractive, if you are constantly fantasizing about being with someone else and an affair is at the top of your mind, then your marriage is in trouble. Something is missing and you need to figure out what that is before it is too late.
How to Save Your Marriage
While these signs can be troubling, your marriage can still be salvaged. Here are some ways to get your marriage back on track:
- Talk to your partner. Communication is key in any relationship. Do not ever make assumptions. You may think the problems in your marriage are clear, but maybe your partner does not think that way. They cannot read your mind, so talk to them about your issues and feelings. If you need to, write everything down and ask your spouse for a time when you two can talk. Find a time and space where you will not be distracted. Prepare your thoughts and discuss them in a calm manner. Ask your partner what they need as well and work on a solution. This is important; your marriage is on the line.
- Check in with each other. After discussing your issues, you and your partner should agree on a time when you can check in and talk about your feelings. For example, you might want to check in one month from the first conversation and see if any improvements have been made. If not, then you may want to come up with a different plan. Ideally, you and your partner should grow together through this hardship.
- See a marriage counselor. If discussions and check-ins are not helping, then your last resort is to see a marriage counselor. A neutral third party can help you and your partner have difficult conversations and help you make changes in your marriage. A marriage counselor is skilled at helping you learn your patterns, build skills, and set goals without judgment. Ideally, you and your spouse should learn communication and conflict resolution skills that you can incorporate into your marriage. Keep in mind that each counselor is different. You and your spouse should look for the right counselor together so you can both be part of the process.
Seek Legal Help
Marriage is not for the faint at heart. It is never easy. There will be problems from time to time. Some couples can weather these storms; others cannot and they end up divorcing.
If you cannot save your failing marriage, you are not alone. Seek legal help from Broward County divorce attorney Scott J. Stadler. We can save you from your marriage and give you the advice you need to move on. Schedule a consultation with our office today by calling (954) 398-5712 or filling out the online form.