3 Common Reasons Marriages Fail
With about half of marriages ending in divorce, it's fair to have concern about your partnership's level of risk. While it's different for every couple, there has been extensive research completed to discover the roots of partnership failure.
Generally, there are three main issues that can spell disaster, and keep in mind these often occur as a package rather than a singular cause—experiencing one does not doom your marriage. In fact, it's best practice not to take these as ironclad omens, but instead as obstacles to handle with care.
Let's start with one of the most damaging causes of divorce.
Many couples assume there will be clear warning signs of an affair, but many happen in happy marriages. This can be a tough pill to swallow, especially if you're the one who's been cheated on. Oftentimes, the affair stems from two people who thought the marriage would represent a happily-ever-after akin to fairy-tale land, but after the confetti settles, they realize their lives are the same as before. For some couples, predictability provides stability, but for others, a married routine can feel suffocating.
Whether the relationship falls into a rut, the couple realizes they aren't as happy as they had hoped, or they are desperate for excitement and something new, an affair could arise. The most troubling part of affairs is that while the marriage will likely end, the trauma of betrayal could cause years of lasting psychological damage.
Lack of communication
Another common harbinger of divorce is a lack of communication. An issue so impactful it is often considered the number-one cause of divorce, regardless of the kinds of problems in your marriage, if you fail to communicate with your partner there is little hope for resolution. This often results in two people making separate, opposing choices for the household, which leads to conflict.
Failing to discuss these disagreements can create enduring resentment, which ultimately unravels the marital bonds. Practicing communication and listening to your partner, rather than countering their opinion, is a necessity in marriage. For disagreements to settle peacefully and productively, you and your partner both need to feel your feelings are valid, which hinges on good listening and thoughtful responses.
Lack of commitment
The last issue on the list is a lack of commitment. This is one of the most common complaints listed in divorce papers. The partner filing will often feel the marriage is one-sided or wonder why they ever got married in the first place.
Whether the relationship fell apart years ago or the couple just didn't know how to end it, a lack of commitment is insolvable, and you may feel like legally bound roommates. The hardest but most important part of marriage is two people agreeing to act as one, with a shared life. A lack of commitment often results in a marriage with two separate people sharing the same roof without becoming a cohesive unit.
While you should maintain an individual identity and have your own hobbies, when troubles arise, understanding your partner well enough to make a unified decision together is essential to functioning as a couple. Often, a lack of commitment is paired with a lack of communication because the couple is not on the same page.
Saving the marriage
When one or both partners fail to commit to the marriage, this often leads to a breakdown in communication, increased conflict and, eventually, a breakdown in the relationship. The biggest mistake couples make is assuming that their partner will change after the wedding day. It is possible for your partner to change, certainly, but it takes work and devotion on both sides. Especially when it comes to disagreements about your shared (or not shared) core values, conflict can either encourage growth or plant the seeds of instability. The best way to navigate between the two is to assess and renew your sense of commitment, and communicate as thoroughly and compassionately as possible.