Here are the top ten relationship problems in no particular order…
So many places this can go wrong. Sigh.
2) Being over scheduled.
Relationships need time and energy! You’re not doing yourself or your family any favors by keeping such a fast pace – even if everyone else is doing it. Slow down!
3) Unrealistic expectations.
Sometimes I wonder if all expectations are unrealistic. Although we have to have some expectations or we wouldn’t be able to get out of bed in the morning. ( Unrealistic expectations are a particular difficulty for blended families.)
4) Division of labor.
I’m not sure why we have decided that running a household is not supposed to take very much time. Perhaps this should go under number 3. And number 2. Running a household takes time and energy — and planning.
5) Little or no affection.
There are some people who don’t like physical affection, but they generally do not marry each other, which would make things easier. Oops, I am having a problem with number 3 again. Sorry!
6) Thinking your mate will meet all your needs without having to ask.
Actually, even if you do ask, (s)he will probably not be able to meet all your needs. Sometimes, it seems as if none of your needs are being met.
7) Not dealing with your own issues and expecting the marriage to solve what you need to solve yourself.
Sometimes when we are miserable, we look for a reason, and often our spouses come under fire. Sometimes we get married thinking that will solve our problems. (Usually it means you now have your problems and someone else’s problems too.)
8) Falling out of love.
This happens to every relationship. It means it’s time for a different kind of love to start growing. It can often be very painful in the beginning.
9) Lack of sexual awareness.
This is often the result of other problems. Sex is a psychic carrier in our culture – laden with lots of “stuff” we have trouble dealing with. It is hard to grow to adulthood without some sort of wounding in this area. Often, we don’t even know we have a problem until we get married.
10) Not giving enough time or energy to the relationship.
Notice this list did not have infidelity, money, in-laws or children on it. Those troublesome areas sometimes mask underlying problems. Some possible common causes to look at are boundaries, and not investing enough time or energy into the relationship. In our culture, this is a biggie. Most of us are stretched pretty thin, and we are often driven by the hope of external rewards. We may think “we have found our mate”, so we’re “done” in a way. Marriages are like plants – they require a certain amount of tending and nurturing.
I do not mean to depress or burden anyone with this list! I hope you will see that you are not alone – that other people struggle as you do, and that many of these problems are extremely common. That doesn’t mean there is no hope for relief! Even if you are deeply mired in one or more of these relationship problems, there is usually a way to resolve issues and start enjoying life again. Don’t give up – get help. There is help all around you, and I am personally pulling for you.