You’re having the same argument again
Here you go again. You’re scolding him for not changing the toilet paper roll. You have to remind her to call on her way home from work. Or your issues are deeper, like what religion to raise your kids. Believe it or not, you’re not arguing about what you think you’re arguing about. According to The Gottman Institute, repeating conflict in your relationship represents the differences in your lifestyle and personalities. “This might lead to divorce if you let the arguments seriously escalate, fight dirty, shut down, refuse to talk, or excessively blame,” says Marni Feuerman, a licensed psychotherapist in private practice in Boca Raton, Florida. You may need to compromise and do some give and take to end the constant battles and differences. Make sure you know the subtle signs of a toxic relationship.
You argue about sex
If one of you wants sex and the other doesn’t, that lack of intimacy can mean you’re in a platonic relationship. “Because of the innate physical and emotional vulnerability of sex, this can be a hard hurdle to get over,” says Laurel House, a celebrity relationship coach and resident sex expert for MyFirstBlush. “But it’s essential. Without physical touch, you could create a feeling of rejection, which can lead to insecurity, resentment, anger, and rebellion.” You didn’t get married to become roomies or business partners. In fact, a recent study done at the University of Toronto-Mississauga found that having sex more than once a week doesn’t make us happier. But, if the sex becomes less frequent than weekly, that’s when happiness declines, the study found. “Intimacy is a critical part of a healthy partnership,” says Hall. “If you’ve experienced a lack of intimacy for a prolonged period of time, it’s probably leading to a disconnect within the relationship.” According to House, you need to talk with your partner about the lack of sex when you’re both calm and in a place where you can be open and vulnerable. But don’t just talk about the fact that you aren’t having sex. “Talk about why you aren’t having sex,” says House. Find out whether it’s boredom, disinterest, distraction, priorities, insecurities or maybe a physical issue.
You argue over chores
Letting the laundry basket overflow can harm your marriage more than you may realize. A 2015 study from the University of Alberta suggested that people in more egalitarian relationships have higher relationship satisfaction and more sex than couples who don’t divvy up chores. If you’re in a relationship that you feel is fair and balanced, you usually don’t mind taking on certain responsibilities or chores. But if you feel it’s imbalanced, you’ll resist doing that laundry. You want to feel understood and valued on a deep emotional level. Mike Goldstein, founder of EZ Dating Coach, has experienced this issue with his fiancé, Kelly. “When we first started living together, it drove me crazy when she left dishes in the sink,” says Goldstein. “I’d ask her repeatedly to put her dishes in the dishwasher. However, I found a way to love her more when I see dishes in the sink.” Kelly usually cooks dinner for the couple while he handles breakfast. “Now, when I see the dishes, I’m reminded that she made us an amazing dinner. If there were no dishes, that would mean she didn’t make dinner,” says Goldstein. “Now, I’m grateful when I see dishes in the sink. It reminds me how lucky I am to have an awesome fiancé who cooks for us.” Check out these 17 signs to find out if you’re the toxic one in your relationship.