Last Updated on January 5, 2024 by Emma White
Most relationships follow a typical cycle. In the early stages, the two of you are always together. When you’re not together, you’re thinking about each other. Everything is exciting, funny, and new.
Over time, this rose-colored lens begins to fade. Instead of quirky, those traits and behaviors become irritating. You start to recognize the areas where the two of you differ, and because you ignored them before, those differences become arguments.
However, it is possible to follow expert help for couples tips and avoid this dangerous cycle of relationship destruction. If you want to ensure a healthy, long-term commitment, watch out for these 7 things that drive wedges between couples, turning lovers into fighters.
1. Keeping Track of Rights and Wrongs
A relationship is not a game. There should not be a scoreboard, and you shouldn’t point out home runs or strikeouts. Don’t get us wrong. In the early stages, you do want to watch for red flags.
But, as you settle into a committed relationship, you’re walking a slippery slope if you find yourself keeping track of things your partner is doing right versus wrong. You’re looking for reasons to leave or faults to throw in their face when they “mess up.” This behavior will drive a wedge between the two of you.
2. Living in the Past
Yes, in the past, the two of you were head over heels in love. As your feet leave the clouds and hit the real world, there’s not as much time for romance. Try not to continuously point out all the things the two of you “used to do” together. Build your new life, and make new traditions. Don’t compare your partner to your exes, either. Let go of the past, and try to enjoy each day. Remember, you aren’t promised a future!
3. Too Much Screen Time
Finding shows you both enjoy, sharing reels, and talking on video chats, which are excellent ways to integrate electronics into your relationship. However, when most of your interactions are on devices that could be face-to-face, you aren’t building the intimate connection your relationship needs. Worse, when most of your communication is with other people on your social media feeds, there’s a significant danger that your phone could destroy your relationship.
4. Lack of Trust
Do you find yourself (or is your partner) continually checking the other person’s phone? Is it urgent that you share passwords because one of you doesn’t trust the other? This is a red flag warning that one person’s insecurities could destroy the relationship. Trust is an essential component in any successful partnership. Without it, those jealous quirks that seemed sweet and vulnerable in the beginning will quickly become annoying and destructive.
5. Not Sharing Expectations
Think about the times you’ve planned out an important event in your head, only to be disappointed when it didn’t go as you hoped. This happens in relationships when one partner wants something to go a certain way, and the other partner doesn’t meet those ideals. Unmet expectations destroy the joy in a situation.
Yet, if you didn’t share what you were hoping for with your partner, is it their fault that they didn’t follow your imaginary plans? Before you get upset with the other person for not reading your mind, share those expectations and discuss where you might be setting yourself up for disappointment to create a compromise.
6. Arguing Instead of Disagreeing
Everyone is entitled to their opinions, and it’s statistically improbable that you’ll never disagree with your partner. How you handle those disagreements can make or break your relationship. Instead of arguing, discuss each of your opinions. Try to see the other person’s perspective, even if you don’t agree with it. With healthy discussions, you can work out a resolution that you’re both satisfied with.
7. Trying to Solve Every Problem
One of you might be a “fixer,” and that way of showing love and feeling valued is to try to solve every problem the other person brings to you. But sometimes, we just want to vent. A healthy way to handle this is to preface a problem with, “I just need an ear to listen, not a problem-solver right now,” or vice versa.