We meet with men daily in various stages of marital crises. While marriages fall apart for a variety of reasons, there are definite warning signs that a marriage isn’t working anymore. Here are six of those signs…
1. You Often Dream About a Life Without Your Spouse
Thinking about how much better life would be if you were divorced is something that can happen to anybody. This is common for married couples. What is not normal is if you find yourself constantly “fantasizing” about divorce. This is a sign that you are stuck in an unhealthy situation. It’s a definite indicator that you need to seek individual or marital therapy before it’s too late, or the next step is calling your lawyer.
2. You’re Not Resolving Conflicts
If, on balance, the negative outweighs the positive in your marriage and no one is working to improve it, your marriage is in trouble. Problems feed on inactivity. Not being proactive to solve marital problems will lead to other problems and it only makes sense that the “cons” would soon outweigh the “pros” in your marriage. You need to take a closer look and see if the negative things in your marriage are something that can be changed, and if so, are they something that both of you are willing to work on?
3. You Keep Things to Yourself
You might be headed for a divorce if you find that you dread talking to your spouse about marital problems or life in general. Maybe you leave out the details, or just plain lie about minor things that really shouldn’t matter because you are trying to avoid conflict. Communication is an important way to relieve stress and build a healthier bond between couples. If you don't feel comfortable communicating, it could be a sign that you feel a lack of trust in your spouse. Likewise, having a “secret” cell phone or email account can send the wrong signal to your partner. A marriage can't survive where there are issues of trust.
4. You Have Continued Disagreements Regarding Finances or Keep Separate Bank Accounts
Money trouble is a common cause of divorce. If you find that you and your spouse are constantly at odds regarding financial issues, your marriage may be in trouble. Of course, if you are facing financial trouble together and can be unified as to how to proceed, that is not as much of a problem. But some couples find that they can never agree on issues of spending and saving, and these problems tend to only get worse over time. How we handle finances says a lot about our values and approach to life.
If you have always had separate bank accounts, that may not be a problem in your marriage. But one spouse suddenly setting up a separate bank account or redirecting his or her paycheck can be a good indicator that trouble is on the way. Also, any changes in spending habits can be a sign of problems.
5. You Feel You Are the Only One Trying to Solve Problems
If you are the only one trying to discuss and solve those problems, it can be frustrating and also a sign of trouble. When you feel like your spouse won’t discuss issues with you, it can quickly cause a feeling of separation and isolation. 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.
6. You Are Rarely, if Ever Intimate
It may be that one of you wants an intimate relationship and the other doesn't. Maybe you have both stopped needing that connection with each other. Whatever the reason, a marriage lacking intimacy and affection can be headed for trouble. Sleeping in separate rooms is also a bad sign.
If you have the sense that there is a breakdown in your relationship that may lead to a separation or divorce, be sure to contact a mental health professional for help. In addition, contact an attorney to understand your legal rights. Making the call, sending a website inquiry or even going in for a Case Evaluation Meeting does not necessarily mean that you are getting divorced. It is simply an opportunity to educate yourself to avoid doing something based upon emotion rather than what is in your best legal interests if things continue to deteriorate.
About ADAM (American Divorce Association for Men)
The American Divorce Association for Men (ADAM) is a group of highly qualified attorneys who advocate for men’s rights in divorce, child custody and parenting time, paternity, support, property settlement, post judgment modifications, and other family law matters. Since 1988, ADAM has been aggressive, diligent, and uncompromising when representing their clients. A team of compassionate and skilled family law attorneys, ADAM is dedicated to being Michigan’s leading divorce attorneys for men and practices a policy of integrity in all dealings.