Heartbreak

5 Tiny Signs You're Headed For A Divorce — You Just Don't Know It Yet

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couple in silent argument

Never underestimate the power and importance of repair in relationships, and never doubt that even the tiniest disagreements deserve to be addressed.

Small challenges in a relationship can lead to devastating consequences for your marriage when nothing is reconciled. In this case, time doesn't heal, it just makes things worse as the unresolved conflicts continue.

This is often how a couple finds themselves at the doorstep of divorce, with at least one claiming they "thought everything was fine."

Death by a thousand cuts, as they say.

Couples coach Julia Woods specializes in helping couples recover and heal. In an Instagram post, Woods shared five signs you may be heading for divorce that are way too easy to ignore and overlook — and how you can recognize what's really happening before it's too late.

RELATED: The 4 Behaviors That Cause 90% Of All Divorces

5 Signs You Are Headed For A Divorce And Just Don’t Know It Yet

1. You're not resolving and repairing conflicts.

You may think the conflicts wiull fix themselves, but not addressing them head on can leave a huge dent in your relationship.

According to psychologist John M. Grohol, "The problem lies in the fact that as marriages and relationships degrade into an argument, the discussions are laced with criticism and unspoken expectations of one another."

Grohol offers some ways to resolve conflict head-on, which include:

  • Looking at the positives during the conflict.
  • Talking about it now rather than later.
  • Making the first move.
  • Compromising.

2. Blaming each other for everything.

Placing blame is all too easy in a relationship. And I get it! During a heated argument, it feels good to blame your partner for everything wrong in your life.

But remember, placing blame doesn't get to the root of the issue and can cause more harm than good.

Referred to as the "blame game" by Woods, she says, "While it may feel like you are winning at the moment because you see them as the problem, you are losing the love, connection, and relationship you long for. Remind yourselves that you are a team and whatever issues you face, you face it together. Take responsibility for your actions and always discuss issues with a clear mind."

   

   

RELATED: The #1 Predictor Of Divorce, According To 7 Experts

3. You keep waiting for your partner to change.

It's painful to wait years and years for your spouse to finally change and see the bigger picture — and most relationships fall apart because the challenges become too much or all too frequent.

Family therapist Jason Whiting states, "An intimate relationship, by definition, contains challenges."

In any relationship, we have to be able to embrace a little conflict. After all, it's better to confront the issue head-on than to ignore it. "You and your partner operate at completely different levels," says Whiting.

So, learn to compromise and respect one another's differences. Though it may take time, it'll make for a stronger relationship in the long run.

4. You can't stop thinking about all the ways your partner lets you down.

Ruminating is normal for everyone, especially for couples going through a hard time.

According to writer Melissa Kirk, "The problem, of course, is that so often, we ruminate on things that are unsolvable." And let's face it, if the problem was easy to solve we wouldn't spend so much time reflecting in the first place.

Kirk suggests that instead of ruminating on your partner's actions, try ruminating on your own.

"This can cause us to feel good since it makes us think that we can solve the problem at hand and allows us to think more deeply about it," writes Kirk.

If we are being honest, we all like to feel a little bit more in control of our lives.

   

   

5. You've shut down your communication around conflict and uncomfortable topics with your partner.

In all seriousness, stonewalling can lead to divorce. Period.

"When you shut down and refuse to speak to your spouse because you are mad, hurt, or tired of fighting, you are making a lethal blow to your marriage," Woods explains.

And it makes sense! Imagine if your go-to move is to shut down and never discuss any issue happening within your marriage. There's no room to resolve or grow with that foundation!

So, instead of disengaging, try asking for a short break if you feel overwhelmed. But remember — be sure to come back, ready to resolve the issue as a team.

By knowing these signs you can prevent your marriage from ending in disaster and form a stronger bond with your partner in the long run.

RELATED: The Common Behavior That's The Biggest Predictor Of Divorce

Marielisa Reyes is a writer with a bachelor's degree in psychology who covers self-help, relationships, career, and family topics.