If you are wondering if this is the case for you (or if you simply want to beware of the warning signs so you don’t go off course), consider the following:
1. One or Both of You Has Emotionally Checked OutKnown as stonewalling in the therapy world, emotional shutdowns are often unfixable, as the partner at hand refuses to do the work necessary to fix the relationship. To make matters worse, the partner often pretends to be oblivious to this, denying that he has checked out or that something is wrong. Sadly, you can’t fix a marriage with someone who won’t even admit that there is a problem.
2. The Relationship Is AbusiveWhether the abuse is physical or verbal, you should never stay with an abusive partner, especially if you have kids who are experiencing or witnessing the abuse. As scary as it might be, the only way to put an end to the abuse is to get out of the situation as quickly as possible.
3. There Is Continued InfidelityWhile many couples consider even one act of infidelity unforgivable, others manage to work past such betrayal. Personally, I have seen many couples repair their bonds after infidelity, and as difficult as this time is, I know it is possible to find love again on the other side. However, if the infidelity continues, it might to time to say your good-byes. Monogamy is a choice, and unfortunately, it’s not one that everyone can make.
4. Addiction Goes UntreatedI have seen many couples work through the horrors of addiction and come out the other side better and stronger than ever before. However, if the addict refuses to admit that there is a problem and the addiction goes untreated (whether it’s gambling, sex, drug/alcohol addiction), then it is likely that the only answer is divorce. Addiction is a terrible and devastating disease, but sometimes, the best thing to do is walk away and protect yourself and your children.
5. The Sexual Attraction Is Dead and GoneMany couples experience months or even years in which sexual desire is nonexistent. If this lack of libido is a painful and pervasive part of your relationship, then it might be a death knell for your marriage. It’s very difficult to fix a relationship in which one partner desires sexual fulfillment that the other can’t or won’t give.
Make Sure You Get Help When NeededAs long as you are both willing to work through your issues, then there is almost no issue you can’t tackle as a couple. But don’t wait! The longer you wait to discuss these problems, the bigger and more complicated they will become. Good luck and check out theAmerican Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors, and Therapists for therapists in your area.
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