Rebecca loves sharing what she knows about alternative medicine, health, frugal living, fun, animals, and how to live a better life!
Love and Relating
Oh no! So you think you're in love! You're wearing rose-colored glasses and everything is magical. You don't notice red flags because your head is too far up in the clouds, and hopefully not up the person's bum.
We all put our best game face on for the first four months of a relationship, but people typically get comfortable four to six months in. You start slacking and letting that real you shine through, and so does your partner. Time for concessions, compromise, and reality. You want this great love you've found to last forever. But . . . if you have any of these 10 relationship problems, there's a good chance your love for someone can be destroyed forever.
So pay attention. This stuff is important. Giving yourself fully to another human being is a BIG deal. Although it is a blessing to know the feeling of a broken heart (better to have known love than to never known at all), it's not something you want to experience every day. If you're aware of these issues and have the courage to walk away when something goes terribly wrong, you can forget a future of weekends at home crying with tissues, ice cream, and sappy movies.
1) Cheating and Infidelity
Unless you are okay with open relationships, cheating and infidelity are for most people the number #1 deal breaker. Once you have committed to a relationship, if one person steps out, they not only break your trust but throw away the love you have given them. They also can give you irreversible STDs, endless heartache and cause you to continually question them since trust has been broken.
If you are not okay with sharing your partner physically (hey...some people like to swing), and they have cheated on you, do yourself the favor and end the relationship. You do not need to settle for a cheater. You will find someone who will appreciate you.
Have enough respect for yourself to demand loyalty and faithfulness from your relationship.
You know the saying that often rings true, "once a cheater, always a cheater". End it with a cheater and move on.
Is it impossible to repair a relationship after infidelity has occurred? No. But it won't be easy. If you are married and cannot simply walk away from an unfaithful spouse, seek counseling and outside resources for help determining if the relationship is repairable. Only time will tell with this kind of damage.
Similar to cheating comes lying. How are you supposed to have a happy fulfilling relationship with someone that lies to you? You cannot trust a liar. People that love you will not lie to you. A person that loves you will be honest, regardless of the pain it causes. They will tell you the truth and then sort out problems with you. Together. As a team. After-all, isn't the point of two becoming one the goal? Or...if you're not bothered by problem #1 perhaps many becoming one is the goal? I don't know. Had to say it.
People lie for two reasons.
- To avoid having to deal with the consequences of their actions.
- To avoid hurting someone they care about because they've done something that they know will hurt them. In essence, protecting themselves from dealing with inflicting pain on someone.
Lying is the easiest route to take to avoid hurting a loved one, while still remaining unaccountable and being irresponsible. How are you supposed to build a future on that?
3) Drugs and Other Addictions
This is a BIG one. If you are involved with a drug addict, alcoholic, or gambler END the relationship. Often with drug addictions, cheating, infidelity, and lying goes hand in hand, as does abuse.
You are not responsible for someone's sobriety. You cannot get them to stop using. That is a decision they need to make for themselves, in their time, and on their terms. They will not get sober for a relationship with you, or anyone else. Don't take it personally, it is not something you caused and is not something you can fix. Addictions and gambling destroy families, communities, and the lives of many children. It is personal only for the addict. Often when you are tangled up in a relationship with a drug addict you will be in a constant state of turmoil, drama, chaos, worry, and stress (romantic or not). Financial and legal problems pile up quickly in these relationships. They become consuming and heart wrenching. You can soon find yourself feeling like the crazy one. Stop telling yourself that you are too much in love to walk away. Or that you are not strong enough to do so. You are. The best thing you can do for an addict is leave. Stop enabling their behavior. If and when they become sober, then a relationship will be possible for them (with or without you) and at that time, but not a minute sooner. That is when healing and forgiveness can take place. When they've done the work needed to maintain sobriety. Until then...don't get mixed up with an addict. Period.
What if you're unsure the person has a substance problem? Trust your intuition, if you are questioning it, they probably do. If you need more enforcement, check out how a drug addict thinks, feels, and behaves while actively addicted.
4) Abuse: Verbal, Physical, and Control
Any type of abuse is not acceptable. Yes, it is normal for couples to argue or disagree, but then they work things out. They apologize and find the middle ground. Sometimes a compromise is in order, sometimes they simply have to agree to disagree. But love does not fight dirty with verbal abuse, or physical violence. That is not loving. No matter how many times someone lays a hand on you then vows to never do it again is NOT okay and it's usually a lie. When someone constantly wears you down with insults, or by telling you how to dress, how to act, what you are and are not allowed to do, that you're stupid, or any other slander is a means to control.
Anyone that treats another with verbal or physical abuse does not love you. They are insecure and they need to get psychological help.
5) Unrealistic Expectations
You cannot expect anyone to provide you with all the happiness you require. That is an unrealistic expectation. It is not someone else's job to make you happy. A relationship should enhance your life and your partners in an equal balanced way. But it is a priority to make yourself happy first. That is your responsibility. No relationship or friendship can fulfill all the emotional requirements you have. It is not fair or right to put that kind of expectation on one person, and if you do, they will soon resent you for it. No one wants to entertain you all day long, or have you call them or text them 400 times a day. No one enjoys everything you do. Get over it.
Cultivate your own goals and hobbies. Pursue your valuable friendships with people of all walks of life and genders. Determine who you are and what you value. If you have not done so, if you have not taken the steps and work required to know yourself first, it won't be possible for someone else to do it for you. Nor is it their job. And if you put this kind of expectation on one person, the relationship is destined for failure. Get a life! Get your own life first. Then share it with someone else.
6) Lack of Physical Connection and Sex
Sex is what separates a friendship, from a romantic relationship. Once you have given yourself to a person in a physical way, it is very important to keep this part of the relationship strong and healthy. Sometimes life gets in the way, with work, children, health problems or other obligations. No one is available for sex 24/7. But this aspect of a relationship should always be a priority. It is also pretty critical to have a matched sex drive. If you want sex 3x times a day, and your partner is okay with 1x a week, this will be an issue. Make time for romance and for growing your connection and sexual intimacy with your partner. Do not neglect your needs or your partner's needs. Relationships that let sexual intimacy fade away will also fade away as well.
7) Quality Time and Lack of Common Interests
Spending time together is very important. You need to put effort and time into a relationship like you would tend a garden. The grass isn't greener on the other side of the fence, it's greener where you water it. This is even more important the longer you are with someone. It is very easy to take someone for granted once the "newness" wears off. Without care, attention, and effort, it will wither and die.
As for being different, opposites do attract, but over time they can also repel. It is good to have balance in any relationship. You won't always love doing everything the other person does (see number 5) but you should share some common ground and interests in a relationship. Especially if you are considering marriage or a lifelong commitment.
Having great sex doesn't count. Partying together doesn't count.
If you find you really have nothing in common with your significant other, you should start asking them questions and find out where the relationship could be headed. There are a lot of very important questions to ask each other before making a lifelong commitment. If you have major life differences that you can't agree on, such as: where you want to live, what your long-term goals are, whether or not to ever start a family, how children should be raised if you want a family, how finances/debt will be handled...it may be best to move on...
Disagreeing on such topics may not seem like a big deal at first, but in the long term, if you don't agree on these issues, you will either go through some serious growing pains or the relationship will dissolve over time. Do yourself a favor, discuss these biggies first. The rest, such as: who takes out the trash, who cleans, works, etc...can be easily negotiated over time.
8) Imbalanced Responsibilities
When the flames of new love simmer down... the reality of life will set in. In our current day and age expecting one person to hold up the majority of a work-load in a relationship will ruin it. Nowadays men and women both equally work. One partner cannot work, take care of the house, bills, children, pets, cooking, cleaning, shopping and on and on. Equally distributing work-loads is very important, or someone will be looking for an exit. Having imbalanced responsibilities is unfair to everyone involved. It's physically and emotionally exhausting and can easily turn a great relationship sour. Openly discuss which chores will be done by whom. Build off your strengths together. A woman's place is no longer only in the kitchen. And men can easily do a load of laundry. You don't have to love and an endless list of chores, but sometimes you do need to force a smile and carry your share of the weight. Otherwise, your sweetheart will end up feeling unappreciated and find someone to appreciate them. See #1, doom.
Finances at some point will be a blessing and a curse in most relationships. Even if you're not in a relationship they will be at some point. That's life.
If one person brings a large amount of unresolved debt into the relationship (student loans, child support, alimony), the new relationship will suffer for it. It can become quite challenging and possibly unsolvable.
Gambling (RED FLAG, see #3), can kill a relationship, possibly destroying both parties credit and credibility in the process. So don't go picking someone up at a casino! Just a suggestion.
How can you thrive in a relationship when you can't be secure enough to know that the rent or mortgage will be paid? Gambling can be an addiction and treatment is needed to cure it.
Who works and who doesn't? It's okay to have a relationship with someone and decide someone will be a "stay at home" a house-husband or a house-wife (although unlikely in our current economic state). But if you decide this works for your paring, issues can quickly arise about how the money will be spent. Who has the freedom to get out of the house? Who handles the majority of childcare if children are involved? It's a matter worthy of careful planning and discussion before assuming it will work.
If you just can't see eye-to-eye, say goodbye!
10) Family and Children
From the sacred union of two people joining, comes love. Children are a product of the love between two people. Family planning and discussions are crucial to a successful long-term relationship. If your significant other does not want children, it could be a deal breaker for the person that does. Don't waste years trying to convince your SO that they want kids. If they don't, they don't. Move on. Next.
What if pregnancy becomes an issue? Are you open to fertility treatment or adoption? These are very important conversations to have.
Also, we, unfortunately, live on a planet becoming barren of nuclear families, they are a dying breed. Blended families are much more common nowadays. I suppose it really does take a village to raise a child. But with that being said, it's not always the easiest situation to handle. And it was not meant to be this way by biblical design. It is hard and challenging to love stepchildren as if they were your own. Not because you can't love them, but because tremendous amounts of time and patience may be needed to bond with them. Sometimes these bonds are formed effortlessly, other times they will be very difficult and will take a lot of work. This will strain your relationship, especially if you disagree on how children should be raised. Favoritism, jealousy, and insecurity can arise from children, as well as ex's, and your partner. Enter the baby mama drama! There is an abundance of personalities involved in blended families. Ex's (their potential new partners), all the kids. Not to mention heartache for children if the relationship fails and they lose you, and BIG financial obstacles. When you meet someone with children, take your time. Get involved slowly, or choose to find someone without kids from a previous relationship!
How to Avoid the Top 10 Relationship Problems
- Know yourself
- Choose wisely
- Avoid addictions, abuse, and infidelity
- Communicate, communicate, communicate!!!
Cheating and Infidelity
Let's get it on!
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2014 Rebecca