If you recognize yourself, it may be time to review your relationship. The path to separation is paved with silences, looks of impatience and projects that exclude the other.
What other recurring behaviour of couples along the rupture? Below, therapists give you eight clues that suggest that a couple does not have a long time.
1. They ignore the essential needs of each other
“Often, in couples on the brink of breakup, there is a lot of bitterness, so everyone tends to focus on their own needs, not on those of their partner, you will hear them say things like do some things for me, for once, it’s in my interest, instead of, It’s in the interest of our couple.”
This disinvestment of the relationship is problematic and, although it probably occurs because one of them is already feeling lonely, he is definitely pushing for loneliness. “When you do not feel supported by your partner, you have one more reason to leave the relationship,” says Anne Crowley, psychologist in Austin, Texas
2. They roll their eyes and are particularly sarcastic one towards each other
According to a study by John Gottman, one of the most recognized couple therapists, contempt is a sign that you are dangerously close to breaking – it is both a form of disgust and a sense of superiority on your partner: Rolling your eyes, condescending, taunting and sneering at an upset partner are all signs that you are showing contempt (or witnessing it) rejection, denigration, mockery.
The antidote is empathy. “You need to re-humanize your partner by finding things in common with him,” says Elizabeth Earnshaw, a therapist in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
3. They do not talk to each other anymore
Couples often do not communicate as before, and this change can affect both the frequency and content of conversations, and some couples realize that they are starting to avoid deep or serious topics, others that they do not joke more together and each exchange becomes agitated and tense.
“Often, they feel their partner less open to discussion and feel that conversations are running out. Whatever form it takes, they feel that something has changed,” said Nancy Stechler, a psychologist in Sharon, Massachusetts.
4. They are no longer planning for the future
When partners stop making long-term projects, it’s just that they no longer consider a lasting relationship, which can be completely unconscious, but they focus on immediate survival rather than on the fulfilment of life on long-term relationship.
“Deep down, they would like to be elsewhere or simply cannot project together. They are no longer enthusiastic about going on vacation, moving or embarking on new projects together,” says Isiah McKimmie, a couple therapist and sexologist in Melbourne, Australia.
5. They want all the time to be right
Couples who are about to break up tend to compete, everyone wants to win. “Any problem or disagreement becomes a fight to the death, when you realize that a relationship ends, anxiety and insecurity increases and partners fight to maintain their integrity and self-esteem.”
“To tell the other that you love him is always better than arguing over whether the sky is blue, green or purple,” said Douglas Brooks, a therapist in New York.
6. They no longer say hello or goodbye
When couples are about to break up, they stop not only doing the little caring gestures that show their affection, such as bringing back flowers or saying “I love you”, but also stop saying hello and goodbye. Often, partners avoid initiating a simple contact or responding to It as if the other was not there. We are feeling ignored. It is very offensive because we can feel not only rejected but also dehumanized, this lack of interaction is painful, and when someone decides to end a relationship, this fact tends to reinforce their decision,” Anne Crowley added.
7. They make important decisions without consulting each other
When they are thinking of separating, a couple starts to make unilateral decisions, they do not take into account the opinions and feelings of the other, and neither seek nor accept to be influenced by their partner. “In my consultations, I notice partners who start using the word ‘I’ instead of ‘us’ when they talk about decisions to be made. While it is normal to maintain some autonomy, not consulting your partner to decide things that concern you is a lack of respect,” says Elizabeth Earnshaw.
8. They no longer have the energy to argue
Some couples on the verge of a break-up will argue more and more, others will stop altogether, and one or both partners have already made the decision to end the relationship and to the other what it should do differently no longer matters. Tempting to change things seems a waste of time. Some couples are experiencing a decline in tension. What ignited the powder is simply ignored, as well as the other’s attempts to initiate a discussion,” reports Isiah McKimmie.