While there are some couples who are mismatched from the start, most try to wait out the storms in their married life. However sometimes things have gone so bad and for so long that any attempt at setting things right seems futile and divorce is the only way. If you think so of your own marriage as well, watch out for the following 10 signs which may signal that it is best to break up rather than be burdened with an unhappy relationship.
You often imagine yourself divorced
Thinking about how much better life would be if you were single is not unusual when you have had a fight with your spouse. What is not normal is if you find yourself fantasizing about divorce ever so often. This is a sign that you are stuck in an unpleasant situation and you are unable to find a solution to make things better.
You don’t trust your spouse
Are you double-checking your spouse’s schedule and whereabouts? Do you find yourself sneaking a look at his/her papers, receipts and cell phone? If so then these are signs of a serious trust deficit in your marriage. And when there is no mutual faith or trust, it is well nigh for a couple to pull along together.
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You argue about money – all the time
While it is only natural for two individuals to have their own spending and saving habits, arguing about money constantly may signal deep differences in mutual life goals. If neither of you can save enough for shared priorities like a mortgage, vacation or kids’ college fund and are always accusing the other of untoward expenses, it implies that you are moving in different directions; thus it is only a matter of time before your marriage comes unstuck.
Communication has broken down
One of the surest signs that a marriage is in grave trouble is when spouses stop communicating with each other. This can take various forms like keepings things to yourself since you dread talking to your spouse about marital problems or life in general. Or engaging in stonewalling tactics in the mistaken belief that what cannot be seen – like a full-blown fight – cannot hurt the marriage. On the other extreme, if you are overly defensive, dismissive of the other's feelings, show contempt for the other's beliefs you are again breaking the norms of effective communication. For a marriage to survive, it is crucial that couples not only discuss their feelings, thoughts, goals and needs but also find ways of healthy conflict resolution – all of which is impossible when spouses stop communicating with each other.
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Your sex life is practically non-existent
While in the beginning of a relationship, sexual attraction plays an important role, over time various responsibilities and roles make it difficult to have an active sex life. However if you and your spouse rarely have sex or cannot even find time for sexual intimacy it is a sign that your marriage is headed for a divorce. There could be many reasons for this - maybe you both have varying sex drives or maybe you have both stopped needing that intimate connection with each other. Whatever the reason, a marriage that lacks sexual intimacy and affection is deprived of a very basic need and instead of surviving as a marriage of convenience, it may be best to end it.
You feel lonely and helpless
If you feel like you are the only one trying to solve problems in the marriage without the least bit of co-operation from your spouse, it may be better to end such a state of affairs. It can be extremely frustrating to make the effort to discuss marital problems only to have your spouse pulls away from you. At the same time consider the possibility that you have expressed, either in words or actions, that you no longer care and you are the one distancing yourself from the marriage. It isn't uncommon for either spouse to withdraw if they feel the issues in the marriage are being avoided by the other spouse. Eventually one or the other spouse will shut down all together and no longer be interested in solving the marital problems – such a situation can only end in a divorce.
Your spouse constantly degrades you
Mutual respect is the cornerstone of every meaningful relationship; in fact, some would say it is even more important than romantic love and passion in a marriage. So if you find your spouse constantly degrading you, whether before others or in the privacy of your home, and always denigrating your dreams, hopes and qualities, it is best to get out. All these are signs of a toxic relationship, one which can never give you the love and happiness you deserve.
Your kids are being negatively affected
Seeing parents fight day in and day out can impact kids in a very negative manner. They may withdraw into themselves, take recourse to anti-social behavior or even succumb to substance abuse to get rid of their pain. So if you and spouse have been fighting to the extent that your kids are being traumatized, then it is far better that you get a divorce. However be careful never ever to blame them for the way things turned out – if you and your spouse have been unable to resolve issues, it is your problem and not your kids’ fault.
You or your dependents are being abused
Marital abuse can take various forms, ranging from being subject to physical and sexual violence to apparently less dangerous behavior like being denied financial resources, forbidden to see one’s friends and family or even have a job. Such abuse can cause serious harm, both physical and psychological, to the victim and should constitute an immediate reason for getting out of a marriage.
You have thoughts of harming yourself
This is an urgent cry for help from your inner self and should wake you up to the gravity of the situation. If your marriage is so bad that you feel like harming yourself, you need to get out of it now and talk to a therapist as soon as possible.