5 Things That Can Ruin a Perfectly Healthy Marriage

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By Malini Bhatia, Marriage.com, Contributor - April 01, 2017 - Updated April 06, 2017

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Irrespective of how strong your marriage is, or howsoever much you may be in love with each other, there always are things that pull you apart. Like every other force that exists in nature, this pull creates tension. Relationships that are flexible enough to withstand this tension, flourish. Those that aren’t, perish.

So what goes wrong? Let’s see, here are 5 things that can ruin a healthy marriage

1. Financial problems

When you are low on the finances, and you are trying to squeeze things out of every last penny you’ve got, it becomes a real testing time for your relationship. You are trying to cope with unexpected expenses, trying to run your household, meet your financial obligations – things that often lead up to resentment, and not surprisingly, cause hurt, frustration and insecurity.

These are the times when tempers start to flare up, patience starts to wear thin, and within no time you realize you are fighting over petty things.

They say experience is like the comb that life gives you when you go bald. On that note, the one piece advice I offer is to take a deep breath, clear your perspectives and try not to be harsh to your partner. He/she is probably going through the same psychological trauma and arguments are only going to make things worse for the both of you. You need to get together, plan your budgets with an eye on the future, and try to see what other ways you could meet your mutual requirements.

2. The burden of unrealistic expectations

Seeking complete fulfillment from your partner, and holding them responsible when things don’t go as planned is probably the surest way of ruining your marriage. Sometimes, it is the issue of projecting the weight of your unfulfilled expectations on your partner that signals the beginning of the end.

Perhaps, you should try to examine reality instead of finding fault with others. Why is it so hard? I think the problem is that you can't apply rules on your feelings. Because, if that was the case, all you would have to do would be to simply pass a rule – “I am not allowed to feel insecure”. But we know life doesn’t work that way, though! Probably a better way to go about life is to shape your expectations according to the stark realities of life than the other way around. Happiness lies in little things. Look for those little things.

3. Avoiding sex

You may be in love but in time, you may slip into the habit of making excuses when it comes to sex. If sex has lessened or has become nonexistent, it’s a sign there is trouble in your paradise.

Physical intimacy is the most potent glue that holds couples together. Take it away, and people fall apart. Therapist Valerie Shinbaum makes this very appropriate observation: “You can’t set a potted plant in a corner for 20 years and expect it to live.”

And in order to be intimate, you need to feel good about your partner. You can’t be close if all you do is constantly fight, argue and spout negativity through your words or deeds. In fact, many studies have shown that couples experience health and mental benefits from physical intimacy.

4. Lack of communication

A good conversation is all about learning to ask what is that you need. Most couples realize this only too late in their relationships.

What holds you back from opening up to your partner more often? Perhaps, the fact that you are not ready to really listen to your partner as much you should. In retrospect, this looks like an easy thing to do, but in reality, it can be a surprisingly hard thing to do.

It may also have something to do with being women– they tend to have a tough time stating their needs. Ask yourself if your needs could serve the relationship better, as a couple. Running your requests through this filter may help you realize that what you’re about to ask for, could have a positive impact on your relationship.

5. Being unhappy

One of the sure-shot ways to ruin a marriage is to be unhappy at all times, acting miserable and resentful. The goal of every marriage is to seek happiness and peace. To fulfill this, you have an obligation to be happy. And to that end, you need to exercise self-control. No one else, but you can make yourself happy!

You will learn a very valuable life (and relationship) lesson that you are the one in charge of your happiness. It is a decision that you need to make with your circumstances. You could choose to be a miserable, unhappy grouch, or pull up your socks, suck it up, and decide to change your perspective.

If you find yourself in a similar situation, remember to tell this to yourself every single day- “That you can see peace instead of sorrow.”

Finally, learn to forgive your partner. As author Caroline Rushworth says: “Holding onto resentment is considered a way of punishing yourself or the other person. However, by carrying around this negative feeling, you are hurting yourself, because it drains your resources.”

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