I’ve seen it a thousand times. A couple comes to me in crisis. They have been struggling with issues for some time and believe their relationship is at its breaking point. They are in pain. They are full of anger, resentment, resignation, and anxiety. They are locked in a no win power struggle and can’t find their way back to each other. They come to me feeling desperate. They look to me as their last chance of saving the relationship. And sometimes, it’s simply too late.
I share this seemingly dramatic depiction of a couple in crisis because I don’t want YOU to be that couple. Most couples struggle with significant relationship issues for YEARS before seeking help. It’s akin to someone knowing that something feels askew in their body but they don’t go to the doctor for fear of what they will find out. Will it be cancer? Is it life threatening? Many people are simply scared, preferring to muddle through in denial or find ways to mask the symptoms and put the reality at bay.
When a couple waits too long to seek out help, the damage is so severe that it may have become irreparable. Sometimes the cancer in the relationship has taken its hold systemically and cannot be stopped. I don’t want this to happen to you or someone you love. Just as the chances of curing a disease goes up with prevention and early intervention so does the chances of healing and transforming a relationship in trouble. Too many relationships end unnecessarily. With the right information, guidance, and tools, most relationships have the possibility of transforming into powerful, healthy, and intimate connections. The trick? Know the early warning signs and get help. Don’t wait. Relationship problems typically don’t get better over time and don’t magically go away just because you want them to.
Here are 5 signals that indicate your relationship is in trouble.
- You are fighting more often and over more and more trivial things.
- You are distancing yourself from your mate, spending more time away and communicating less
- You find yourself less attracted to your partner. You fantasize about being with another person or what it would be like to be single again.
- You find it difficult to forgive and let things go. You find yourself feeling resentful and hurt for longer periods of time than you did in the past.
- You start to do things behind your partner’s back—for example, it becomes easier to go shopping alone and buy what you want rather than deal with the conflict that occurs from shopping and making purchasing decisions together.
If you identify with two or more of the warning signs listed above, please contact me. While all relationships have their ups and downs and no relationship is perfect, you don’t want to take the chance that these problems will fester into irreparable damage down the line. Just as your body gives you signals that tell you to seek out medical help, your relationship gives you signals as well. It is telling you that there is something that needs to be seen, understood, healed, and transformed for both you and your loved one. Listen to your relationship. You won’t regret it.
As always, I’m here to support you in creating strong and powerful relationships.
Julie Orlov, psychotherapist, speaker, and author of The Pathway to Love: Create Intimacy and Transform Your Relationships through Self-Discovery
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