According to Jennifer Baker of the Forest Institute of Professional Psychology in Springfield, Missiouri, 50% of first marriages, 67% of second marriages, and 74% of those who marry for a third time end in divorce.
There are some common reasons why couples decide to split. It is rarely something so simple as whose turn it is to walk the dog, or the socks and underwear left all over the floor. Couples split because their expectations for marriage are different. Many go into a marriage thinking they are in love. By the time they are facing the divorce lawyer or dividing up the furniture, the word “love” often turns to “hate”. Common to many of the break-ups are several central themes.
1. Affairs: One, or in some cases, both partners begin to think that “the grass is greener on the other side”. They look outside the marriage for what they think they are not getting from their partner. In some cases, they reconnect with a former flame, and in others, it may be someone they meet at work or in their own social circle. Marriage requires work and commitment from both parties. Some people are going to have affairs regardless of the circumstances, while others do so because their partner doesn’t nourish the relationship.
2. Addictions: Unfortunately, many relationships end due to addictions. While alcohol and/or drugs are the primary addictions one thinks of with addictions, there are others including sex addictions, gambling, and online porn that cause conflict and the end of many marriages. In some cases, the addiction is hidden prior to the marriage. In others, the partner thinks that their love will be enough to get the person to stop. There are others marriages that end when both parties drink and engage in behaviors that is harmful to the marriage. Many marriages can be saved when treatment is sought; however, many choose to end the relationship rather than go for help.
3. Money: With the high rate of unemployment, many marriages are strained to the brink with not being able to have enough money coming in to pay rent, house payments, utilities, car payments, or such basics as food and utilities. In other cases, the spending habits of one party may be so out of balance with the other to cause the split. Overspending is a common problem identified when people come to marriage counseling. Money spent on closets full of clothes, shoes, hunting equipment become the breaking point for some, especially when the basic bills are piling up. Some just get to the point where walking away from a relationship is easier to them than staying to work on money management.
4. Abuse: Physical and emotional abuse is more common in relationships than many might think. Both men and women are guilty of bullying, cursing, demeaning, hitting, or even worse in realationships. Unfortunately, many show no respect for their spouse. They treat them in such a way to destroy the relationship. Angry words and critical talk can hurt just as much as a slap. No person should be abused, either physically or emotionally.
5. Lack of Common Interests: Unfortunately, many people who marry think they are “in love” when, in truth, they are just “in lust”. When the reality of spending time with their partner outside the bedroom soaks in, some look to what they have to share. They may then find that they have different ideas and values about life. They don’t enjoy doing things together, so each seeks out others to spend their free time with.
6. Lack of Communication: Some couples live in the same household and never have a sense of what is going on with their partner. The conversation may not get past what they want to eat or what bill should be paid. Their ability to communicate on the level of emotional needs is lacking. They don’t know, or in some cases, even care what their partner feels or thinks. These marriages are doomed to failure without therapy.
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