17 Fool-Proof Ways To Ruin A Perfectly Good Marriage

These things can sour even the happiest of marriages.

man and woman sitting next to each other Ayo Ogunseinde / Unsplash

There's tons of great marriage advice to follow when you want you relationship to work, but there are key behaviors that bring about a failed marriage that are easy to understand. Unfortunately, too many couples practice these toxic behaviors every day in their relationship with each other.

There are time-proven ways to sabotage your "happily ever after." And consistently doing the following will certainly result in a failed marriage. (However, do the opposite and expect your marriage to flourish!)


Here are 17 ways to ruin a good marriage

1. Bring anger into the bedroom

You're going to bed mad at each other — and doing so often. You never talk it over and settle things before going to sleep. You think: why resolve the problem that confronts you before you go to bed? It can wait until the morning, right? Wrong.

It's best to not go to bed angry, deciding instead to take a few moments to decompress, and then solving the problem at hand before drifting off to sleep. You'll feel better in the morning, too.



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2. Don't communicate clearly with each other

The two of you never talk about important marital matters. You have lots of secrets that you keep from each other, and you don't dare let them out.

You think that taking the time to put into words how much your spouse means to you is just a waste. But, in actuality, those words of praise or encouragement go a very long way in sustaining a healthy relationship.

3. Stop being your spouse's number one cheerleader

Maybe you don't let your partner know just how important they are to the world. But why do you need to tell them? It takes too much effort to think about their strengths and talents.

That's quite the mistake. Happy, good relationships involve both partners supporting one another, no matter what.


4. Withhold loving behavior

We form habits, either for better or worse, but you make it a habit to never show your spouse love, kindness, or caring. Your spouse will surely respond in a kind manner... not.

When you withhold affection or love, you show your partner that they don't matter to you, and they will, in turn, show you the same lack of affection.

17 Fool-Proof Ways To Ruin A Perfectly Good MarriagePhoto: Keira Burton / Pexels


5. Never let your spouse know you're thinking about them

You don't call them during the day, don't text them, never send a romantic email, or leave a love note for them in the morning or on their pillow at night. Increasing the positive communications between the two of you is not necessary for your relationship. Or so you think.

Verbalizing how much you miss your partner can do wonders for your relationship. Make it a point to send a quick text or make a phone call to let them know they're on your mind. Unless, of course, you don't want your relationship to last.

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6. Rarely touch your spouse affectionately during the day

Touching says to most happily married couples, "I love you so much, I simply must touch you." If you want your marriage to fail, avoid touching at all costs.


On the other hand, if you want to steer clear of the ways to ruin a good marriage, make touch an essential part of your relationship.

7. Avoid sharing new experiences together

Why bother making it a point to do something new and stimulating to keep your love for each other vibrant and alive? This means you begin to fall into the relationship doldrums.

When you aren't trying new things together, the relationship becomes stale and boring. And there's nothing more off-putting than that.

8. Focus on the negative or sarcastic actions directed towards each other daily

Don't get them a cup of coffee. Don't ask about how their day went at work. Your spouse doesn't need you to do something nice for them each day. And it's that exact thinking that makes good relationships go bad.


You should get them a cup of coffee, ask how their day went, and do something nice for them just because. Being negative or sarcastic isn't a recipe for success; it's a recipe for disaster.



9. Believe that infidelity is common and forgivable

Go ahead and cheat on your spouse. They'll forgive you, right? The heart of all great marriages is trust, but that doesn't matter in your case. You choose to go ahead and engage in a behavior that has destroyed marriages in the past, thinking you'll be the exception.

But infidelity and cheating can destroy a marriage. It ruins trust, intimacy, communication, and can cause an entire breakdown.


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10. Put yourself first in the relationship

You're certain that you are the center of the universe. You don't put your spouse first or tend to their needs, given that your needs are the only ones that count.

But this is incredibly selfish. A marriage is a 50/50 split, a 100% commitment to always do what is best for one another. So when you decide that your needs are more important, you're showing your spouse that they don't matter.

11. Stop compromising

Let's face it — only one of you is in charge of your relationship, so it might as well be you. After all, relationships aren't about compromise, right? That's completely wrong.


The theory that you are the one who rules in your relationship is one of the most glaring ways to ruin a good marriage and destroy everything you've built together.

12. Ensure your individual happiness at the expense of your spouse's

The only person that matters in your relationship is you, and isn't happiness all about what you want? You don't worry about your mate, because if you are happy, then they should be too.

But this way of thinking just isn't true. When one spouse is unhappy, so is the other. Because your marriage depends on the success and satisfaction of both partners, and when one isn't 100%, it affects the partnership altogether.

17 Fool-Proof Ways To Ruin A Perfectly Good MarriagePhoto: Rogério Souza / Pexels


13. Break trust with each other often

Lying and cheating are okay in your marriage, at least in your eyes. There have been plenty of couples in the past who do it, so it should be a green light for you to do as well.

But remember: "trust" in failed marriages is just a word, not a commitment. When you break trust, you not only break your partner's heart, but you break the sacred vow you took when you wed.

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14. Love with limits and conditions

You always make your love come with conditions: "I will love you if..." "I will support you if..." "I will respect you if..." That action defies everything we know about successful marital relationships, but you are the exception, right?


Love should be unconditional. Your marriage shouldn't adhere to limits of love.

15. Disrespect your spouse in front of others

You air the dirty laundry of your marriage, call your spouse names, and treat them poorly in public and in front of others. You don't think it will harm your partner or your marriage.

But it will. It always will. It's your duty as a husband or wife to be your partner's number one supporter. And humiliating or shaming them shows you don't care about their emotional well-being.


16. Break your word when your partner is counting on you

Your your marriage is all about you. You're responsible for yourself, not your spouse. That means you don't worry about your partner's well-being, and you're more than welcome to be self-centered and selfish.

But couples who do this miss the point entirely. Breaking promises does nothing but cause a divide, especially when you've told your partner they can rely on you.



17. Never discuss finances as a team

After all, it is "your money" and "my money" — never the twain shall meet. Spend your "marital money" freely, irrespective of your financial ability to do so. You buy anything you want without wanting your spouse's input.


But the major cause of marital discord centers on financial matters. When you aren't open about your finances and hide major purchases, you're once again breaking trust and showing that you can't be relied on.

The truth is, it is so easy to fail at your marriage. But by taking the proper steps, you can make sure your relationship stays afloat.

So, if you engage in or practice any or all of the aforementioned activities, your marriage will likely fail and it will be 100% your fault.

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Dr. Charles and Dr. Elizabeth Schmitz are renowned love and marriage experts, and multiple award-winning authors. Their expertise has been featured on SelfGrowth.com, Fabulously40.com, and RelateSpace.com, as well as appearing on "The Doctors" to provide inspiration and guidance.