Every couple has their ups and downs – in fact – smooth sailing all day every day is virtually unheard of. When two people truly care about each other and communicate their thoughts and feelings, there are bound to be disagreements. Unfortunately, the divorce rate is still alarmingly high and some studies even put the odds of separation at 50% of all marriages.
So, don’t be a statistic. When you and your partner feel as if you’ve reached a standstill, seek out professional help. There are marriage counselors and relationship experts like Mort Fertel who can guide couples back toward communication and get them back on track.
Here are three ways you know when it’s time to turn to outside help.
Communication has come to a standstill
There is nothing more important than talking through issues with your partner, but sometimes, you may feel like you have run out of things to say. Whether you are angry, tired, or simply feel as if you’ve fallen out of love, many couples experience a point in their relationship where it seems like all hope is lost. Most therapists stress the need to talk through the issues to pinpoint the underlying problem. Other approaches, like Marriage Fitness, suggest focusing on the positives in the relationship rather than rehashing the details. Either way, if you and your husband or wife no longer feel as if you can open up and be honest, it’s probably time to seek out professional help.
Intimacy shifts noticeably
Whether your spouse is suddenly disinterested in bedroom fun or the opposite – both can be signs of a problem. When couples go for long stretches of time without being intimate, it can certainly affect how close they feel. But, a big uptick in arousal can indicate issues as well. One common cause – your partner is being unfaithful and feels like they need to overcompensate at home. If you notice a change in behavior, confront your partner about it. Regardless of the response, it might be time to seek out counseling.
When everything is going smoothly, there is time to appreciate your partner and the relationship can flourish. But marriage vows take into account “for richer and for poorer”, “in sickness and in health”, and so much more. If there is a death in the family, or an illness that leads to exorbitant medical bills, don’t try to disguise your hurt. Communication through hard times is critical easily forgotten. Many couples struggle to return to normalcy after a crisis and can significantly benefit from outside help.
There’s no one indicator that suggests you and your spouse need professional help, but these three situations are often a sign of something bigger at play.