When every day is a struggle and conflict is a regular part of your life, it can be natural to consider ending your relationship, getting a divorce, and starting again. But not all broken relationships need to be thrown away. Here are some considerations for whether you should try to repair your relationship issues before ending it altogether.
Are You Both Safe from Abuse?
Abusive relationships are dangerous and should be handled very carefully. Generally, it is not worth the risk to your health and safety to try to repair the relationship issues that lay beneath the physically or verbally abusive behaviors. Many times, a survivor of domestic violence will believe that things will get better if they can just “tough it out” until their partner learns better relationship skills. That may be true, but the risk to your health and safety in the meantime is significant. Many abusers grow more violent or extreme in their behavior when faced with a loss of control. You need to protect yourself first. This may mean separating from your abusive spouse before starting couples’ therapy to repair your relationship issues.
Get Help to Repair Your Relationship Issues
Talk to a psychotherapist today about how couples therapy can help fix the cracks in your relationship.
Do You Still Think Like a Team?
One way to decide whether you want to repair your relationship issues is to look at the way you and your spouse or partner think and speak about your household. In a healthy relationship, couples work together as a team to overcome obstacles and achieve family goals. This can be anything from splitting up chores to saving to buy a house. When you think about moving forward, does your plan involve thoughts about what “I” could do, or your partner should do? Or are you focused on what “we can” do together. Having a team-first mindset is a sign your broken relationship can still be repaired.
Is Your Relationship a Priority?
Many couples with relationship issues have found themselves treating their time together as a series of transactions, trading chores, accounting for bills and expenses, and keeping up with the kids’ schedule. When these tasks take priority over the relationship itself, it can break down the bonds between people who once loved each other greatly. A lack of prioritization may be a crack to be repaired on your path to a healthy relationship, but it isn’t automatically a deal breaker. Many couples can repair the distance caused by the routines of life by simply putting time together on their calendar and committing to making their relationship a priority.
What Does it Sound Like When You Fight?
Every couple disagrees with one another sometimes, but the way that you disagree or fight can say a lot about both partners’ state of mind, and whether you should repair your relationship issues. When you argue, is the goal to hurt the other person, or to understand their perspective? When fights turn vicious or disrespectful, it can be a sign that someone in the partnership is resentful or no longer engaging on an intimate level. Similarly, if you keep fighting about the same issues again and again, it may be a sign of more foundational relationship issues that need to be repaired.
Are You Both Willing to Work to Repair Your Relationship Issues
This may be the most important consideration of all. No one can force someone else into better mental health. Therapy – for the individual, or the couple – only works if the person receiving it is ready to make the change. If your partner or spouse resists the idea of couples’ therapy or refuses to take your concerns seriously, any effort you make to repair your relationship will have only limited success.
If you are both committed to the success of your marriage or relationship, the good news is that you can still repair your relationship issues and get your partnership back on track. Couples’ therapy or marriage counseling can help you identify the obstacles in your path and work through them together. By working with a psychotherapist you can improve your communication, coping skills, and compassion, so you can stay together in a healthy and loving relationship.
David Stanislaw is a psychotherapist with over 30 years of experience. He helps individuals and couples learn strategies to repair their relationship issues. Contact David Stanislaw to get help today.