Heather has a Bachelor's Degree in English from Moravian College and has been freelance writing for more than 13 years.
Is love really objective or just a contact sport meant to inflict as much physical and emotional damage as possible? I cringe every time I hear the saying "all's fair in love and war" because it's really not fair. Depending on the relationship, the battles could simply be too toxic for your heart and your health. Think about the quality and damage your fights with your partner. Do they hurt you more than them? Look back at your relationship from start to where you are right now to see where you can go next. Be careful with what direction you choose because it can alter your relationship for the worse instead of for the better.
Never make a decision based on impulse because your first impulse might make your partner head for the hills so to speak. Take your partner's feelings into consideration before signing up for couple's counseling if you know they won't go. Find rational alternatives they would be interested in doing before signing your relationship's fate over to someone who doesn't know what they're doing. Arm yourself with a suitable amount of research to your partner to back up any recommendations about counseling or any other type of couple's therapy. Give your partner little wiggle room to say no.
Here are five situations where someone in a relationship can cross the line. See where your relationship fits into these scenarios. Identify what your problems are before fixing your relationship. There's also five possible solutions to fix your relationship if you've crossed the point of no return. Find out how to save your relationship, or if it can even be saved. Knowledge is a powerful tool to have in order to stay happy with your partner. You just need to know how to use it.
Line Crossing Situations
- Lack of Time Together- Do you see your partner less than you like? Is there job pushing them to the limits of your patience? This may seem like small potatoes in terms of relationship trouble, but it's only a stepping stone to greater problems down the line. The relationship doesn't really exist if you and your partner treat each other like passing ships in the nights. Another relationship buzzkill is having to make an appointment to spend time with your lover. Kiss your romance goodbye because it's officially dead. Love is never having to put business first and your lover on the backburner. All work and no play makes you very lonely indeed.
-Differing Interests- Do you detest doing everything your partner wants to do? Golf isn't your cup of tea and shopping isn't theirs either. Your partner always leaves you behind waiting for them to come home whenever they go "golfing." It's okay to have interests separate from the relationship, but the real problems start to occur is when all interests are separate. The relationship starts to crumble when the couple spends all their free time away from each other. Both partners appear to be treating each other like a nation dividing in two. There's very little they have in common and leads to debate about the validity of your partner's loyalty, as well as your own. This is when doubt comes into play. Be careful.
- Conflicting Relationship Goals- Are kids part of your relationship lexicon and not your partner's? Your partner has marriage on the brain while you have only today on the docket. You can't seem to find a way to meet in the middle. Whenever your partner talks about commit, you quickly change the subject to something completely pointless. Your partner starts to pull away and lash out at you for seemingly rejecting them for whatever reason. What do you when all relationship roads never intersect? Do you take the next exit or continue on until one of the roads meet? It's up to you and your lover to decide what comes next.
-Cheating- Can you forgive your partner for straying outside your relationship bed with someone else? When your partner is a Jude Law type, make the right decision to dump his sorry behind because he broke your heart. You can't trust someone after something as devastating as an affair with a nanny tart. It's understandable to want to protect your heart from getting broken again. If you decide to forgive your partner accept that doubt is the new cornerstone of your relationship. Think about it before taking your cheating lover back.
-Abuse- This scenario is the most unforgivable one in my book. Any type of abuse is a clear indicator that your relationship is likely to be fixed. You need to judge where your relationship can go based on the offense. If your partner calls you an offensive name once or twice, that's not the worst offense. It's still an offense but not as bad as a physical one. This is where the relationship gets really dicey. Can you stay with someone who hit you once or once an hour? Decide your next course of action immediately before the worst case scenario happens.
- Set aside some time for you and your partner to be alone together. Have a date night at a different place each week. Watch your joint favorite television program. Play a card game together. Tell each other about your day and listen to everything each other has to say. It's only fair that you allow your relationship to be a two way street by not talking your partner's ear off. Give them time to speak their piece before giving them a piece of your mind. They'll thank you for it.
- Find some joint hobbies you can do together. Take a dancing class together or do something extreme like skydiving. Do activities that excite you and allow the both of you to take risks. Nothing brings a relationship closer than doing something exciting. A bond that can never be broken. Spice up your relationship with adventures to brag to your future children about. Support your partner by allowing yourself to do something only they want to do. Be a little flexible in your relationship without being a complete pushover.
-Talk with your partner about the direction of your relationship. Sounds simple but it's the only way to truly know what each other wants. Discuss everything you want from children to a possible marriage in the future. If you're shying away from commitment, explain to your partner your motives for them to fully understand why. Your motives might be slight in comparison, but tell them anyway so your partner has all the facts at hand before doing anything regrettable. Let your relationship progress once everything has been laid out on the table properly.
- Confront your partner when you know they've strayed from your bed. Don't soften completely if your partner shows any guilt over their actions because there's a chance they could be lying. Establish some ground rules between you two if your relationship is fixable. Make them move out of the house for a while before allowing them to sleep on the couch or the guest room. Don't allow them back into your bed right away. If you do, this could give them an unofficial okay to cheat again. You might not think it it but to them you're saying I'll always forgive you no matter how many tarts you sleep with. Be fair to yourself before showing too much fairness to them. See a counselor to talk about your problems and get an objective opinion if you can afford it. Don't sweep your relationship problems under the rug, get help to fix everything before deciding whether to continue or end the relationship.
- Fight back against any type of abuse. No, I don't mean give it as good as your partner dishes it out. Don't be a patsy for them to walk all over whenever something doesn't go their way. It's unfair to the both of you. If your partner is more of a predator than you thought, take decisive action to stop the abuse. Don't allow your partner to verbally tear you apart. Find a way to record what they're saying for them to hear it first hand. Let them take in what they have to say before going to a counselor or therapist. If your partner slaps you once due to any type of duress, see if your partner shows any signs of guilt and apologizes. Realize that your partner is human and possibly did one regrettable action. Seek a counselor if any regrettable action becomes too common. If nothing helps, get out while you still can. Get the police to intervene and stay away from your partner at all costs. There's no going back once abuse becomes extreme.
Ultimately, not all relationships are meant for the finish line. Some only have the expiration date of a milk carton. Others can last until the "death do us part" mantra. It all depends on the relationship and the people involved in it. Does the couple have the mindset and fortitude to withstand anything? If you answer yes, seek outside help for your damaging relationship problems. If you said no, pack your bags and move away from your toxic partner before the relationship poisons you too much. Cut your losses and find someone else. It sounds cruel but it's the truth. You shouldn't have to stay in an unhealthy relationship when someone better is out there waiting to treat you right.