4 Warning Signs That Your Relationship Is in Trouble

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4 Warning Signs That Your Relationship Is in Trouble

Most of the time people enter relationships with a feeling that everything has excellent potential.  They’re not anticipating an end to their love.  The truth is, that’s often the case.  Relationships do end.  Often, warning signs are missed, but they do exist.  John Gottman, Ph.D., is a leading psychologist in the area of marriage and relationships.  He has four warning signs and adjustments that can be made:

  1. Criticism - It’s not the same as complaining, when you’re attacking one particular problem or the behavior of your partner.  You’re actually attacking their character.  A criticism might include, “You are such a slob”.  A complaint, on the other hand, would sound more like, “I’m tired of picking up after you”.   You can’t say anything constructive when a person is criticizing, or, it would be more difficult.  If someone complains, it’s easier to address the concern.  To fix this, make it a point to complain and not criticize.  And, if your partner is guilty of the latter, have a discussion about it and see if they’ll commit to not criticizing.
  2. Contempt - This is really criticism, magnified.  When you’re attacking your partner as a person, it’s demeaning and insulting.  You’re looking down on them, possibly calling them names, mocking them and being sarcastic.  To fix this, increase your tolerance.  Learn to communicate with your partner and appreciate each other.  Couples therapy is often necessary for relationships involving contempt.
  3. Defensiveness - This is when you’re attacked and then attack in defense.  This typically involves playing the victim, ignoring your partner, making excuses and disagreeing.  To fix this, listen to the complaint and try to empathize.  Then, take responsibility, or some of it.  After truly listening and showing compassion, tell your side of the story.
  4. Stonewalling - Checking out of a conversation to protect oneself from being hurt is stonewalling.  A person will stop following the conversation or actually leave.  They may seem apathetic, but are actually overwhelmed.  To fix this, try to discuss the issue together and find out when the person stonewalling is becoming overwhelmed. Make plans to give space if needed and eventually come back to discussing the problem.  Identify these issues early on.  The longer they last, the more it hurts your relationship.  If you’re trying your best to fix things and there’s no cooperation, and situations are repeated, you might try counseling together. Also try reading the book, The Relationship Cure: A 5 Step Guide to Strengthening Your Marriage, Family, and Friendships by John Gottman, Ph.D.

How You Subconsciously Maneuver into Controlling Relationships

Upset Woman

How You Subconsciously Maneuver into Controlling Relationships

If you feel like you have no control in your life but are always being controlled, feel overwhelmed by pressures, or that you are helpless because your power has been taken away, you could be creating a situation where you always export your sense of power and control to others. This generally isn’t a conscious move. If you feel a lack of power or control in your life, feel helpless but don’t know what to do, then this is probably you. The first issue is becoming aware of it. Once you have done that you can take steps to turn things around and take control of your life again.

HERE’S HOW YOU SUBCONSCIOUSLY MANEUVER INTO CONTROLLING RELATIONSHIPS:

First, you stop taking care of yourself in the right way. Whether you are smoking, shirking off exercise, over-eating or eating the wrong things, whatever the situation when you don’t take care of yourself you are sending an unconscious message for others to take care of you. The next sign is that you rail against the expectations or authority of others. Those with rebellious attitudes often are screaming at authorities to control them. They hate authority and at the same time they wish deep inside to be controlled by it. Those who wish to be controlled often don’t make the best choices in life. They fall apart at the last minute. They lack follow through. They flake out. They fail to complete the assignment and they telegraph their inability to handle things in the process.

Those who subconsciously want to be controlled may ask those in positions of authority question after question about a task or assignment. They may not even need help but feel inadequate, they are seeking attention and even friendship, or they want someone else to take over. Are you willing to take risks? Do you fear or loathe making mistakes? If you do, then you may be screaming for someone else to come in and take over. Are you a person who just can’t say no? If you constantly overextend yourself and can’t follow through, then this may be you. Do you feel as though you have no say in what’s happening around you? Do you feel as though your opinion doesn’t amount to much, if anything at all? The fact that you feel this way means you are ripe to be controlled because you yourself don’t value your own opinion.

Are you attracted to the controlling type? If your partners always seem to be persuasive, charismatic, strong, independent minded and even controlling and manipulative people, you have to consider that subconsciously you want to be controlled. Do you know your own feelings on what is going on in your life? If you can’t tell how you feel about things, or do things even though they make you feel uncomfortable, you may be practicing a type of self-sabotage that leaves you subconsciously exporting your power while consciously despising what is happening to you. For more on breaking free of negative patterns read, Get Out of Your Own Way: Overcoming Self-Defeating Behavior by Mark Goulston and Philip Goldberg.

Things Men do that Don’t Impress

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Things Men do that Don’t Impress

It isn’t easy finding someone to date around here. The prospect can be at times glorifying, terrifying and downright dull. It surely isn’t easy to catch the attention of the right person either. But sometimes guys go about it all wrong. They try to impress but end up turning her off. Alexander Dumass recently approached AskWomen forum on Reddit and asked what the worst ways to pick up women were. The results are as follows. Pay careful attention gentleman; here are the things men say or do that do not impress. Some guys trash talk women. But if you are trying to impress her why would you insult her whole sex? Follow up question, how is that supposed to make you look good?

Guys, if you’ve been having trouble with the ladies, think about why that is. Was it the girls you were dating? If so, it may be your selection process that was off. And just as men hate it when women put us in an entire category, so too do they. Don’t be so negative, and if you feel that way perhaps couch those feelings until later, or don’t approach her at all. Don’t insult your current flame. If you are saying negative things about her what makes you think she’s going to want to date you? You see, if you are saying these things about your current girl, it makes logical sense that if this new girl starts dating you she’ll sooner or later be the one being insulted. So again keep the negativity to a minimum.

Showing off how much money you make is a turnoff. As one Redditor wrote, “It’s not douchey to have money or to spend money on nice things. It is douchey to brag about how much money you make and the nice things you own, to make a big show of spending your money so everyone can see how rich you are, or to act as though being wealthy somehow makes you better than those around you.” If you get her number do not send her a photo of your member. Men may be visual creatures but women are turned on mentally and emotionally. If she does enjoy that sort of thing, and ask her first before doing it, make sure you are deeply involved in a relationship.

If you really want to turn her on and make her like you, talk to her, find out what she likes, what she’s into and find out all you can about it. Don’t go down a checklist of why you are the best guy to be her man. This isn’t an interview and you aren’t filling a position. These are women, beautiful, mysterious creatures. Appeal to her on a fun, interesting, human level. It’s more about making an emotional bond than fulfilling the duties of the position. Do not tell her or even brag about how many women you’ve been with. Don’t lie and say you are really into something that you aren’t into just to get close to her. Be honest with her. If you say it’s your favorite film, make sure it is. Women have incredible B.S. meters. Lastly, find out about her. Don’t just go on and on about yourself, or you might turn around and find she’s slipped off. For more advice read, How to Be a Chick Magnet: Learn Exactly How to Attract and Impress a Girl, and Master the Art of Talking to Women by Calvin Biggs.

Having a Guy Friend Helps after a Split

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Having a Guy Friend Helps after a Split

What’s more painful than a breakup? Few things in life fit that description and it’s usually when you’re eyeing a casket or a terrible diagnosis. It happens more than once to most of us. Some aren’t as painful as others. There are lots that seem like a relief. Still when you’re a female there are things that can help you get over a breakup. Not just wine or a pint of Ben& Jerry’s. Having friends and family around can help a lot. What’s really helpful is having a guy friend around after a split.

Sure lots of girls want to verbally bash men. When you’re with your girlfriends go ahead and do that to your heart’s content. At least you can get all those negative emotions out of you, and feel validated when your friends do the same. But this ‘all men are pigs’ attitude may seep in.  It can then hurt your relationship with the opposite sex and when you’re ready, it may even set your dating life back. No guy wants to go out on a date with a woman who is closed and highly suspicious of him, particularly if she’s only suspicious due to his sex. What is she doing there to begin with? This closed attitude may then inhibit the next stage of your love life. Also, women are more emotional. But after the initial grieving phase, how many times can you watch the same romantic sappy comedy? How many times can you hear about the one who stole your friend’s heart and got away?

The benefit of having a male friend around is different. First, he reminds you that all hope is not lost. There are good guys out there, guys that are worth dating and being with. In the short term this thought may not be as comforting as calling all men dogs. But in the long run it will be much healthier for your psyche. The next benefit is that he isn’t interested in having a pity party. After a while your girlfriends may not either. In fact, they’ll sidle away and make excuses. Instead, he’s going to march into your room, give you a sadder story, then rip you from your cold den of solitude and make you go out, to the movies, a great restaurant, a club for a night of dancing, a bar, pool, darts and laughs or something else to forget your troubles. He’ll turn the tables on you instead of letting you wallow in misery. You’ll be able to leave that stage behind you and finally progress into the woman you are meant to be; a strong, self-loving independent woman who is ready for the next adventure of her life.

Some women, those who generally can separate sex and love, also have a little tryst with a cute male friend that they don’t want to have a long term relationship with. It validates them and helps boost self-esteem. But don’t do it if it’s a mistake, or either of you have feelings the other doesn’t reflect back. Otherwise, make sure to interact with your male friends during a breakup, too. It will help tremendously. For more advice read, The Single Woman’s Sassy Survival Guide: Letting Go & Moving On by Mandy Hale.

Cheating Clues Men Exhibit

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Cheating Clues Men Exhibit

Some women are very paranoid about their man cheating.  Perhaps they are insecure or have felt the sting of infidelity before. Others don’t worry so much. But in either case, it’s important to know the clues men exhibit when cheating, not only for yourself but for those around you, whom you’d want to safeguard against such a thing. According to a recent study, a woman can tell whether or not a man has cheated just by looking at his face. Women have a natural ability to judge fidelity based on a man’s facial cues. However, not all women are attuned to this ability, or have interpersonal skills, or empathy. Therefore it’s important to see the telltale signs of cheating for yourself. Of course, just because your man is exhibiting these signs doesn’t mean he’s actually cheating. Many a surprise party or special gift has been ruined by a wary wife or girlfriend. So take one or two little things in stride. But be aware of the warning signs.

Is your man acting distant or moody? Irritability, mood swings, acting cold or distant all of a sudden can be signs. When he’s happy leaving but unhappy in his lady’s presence, he may be cheating. Sometimes you can catch a man in his lies. He tells you one thing, then forgets and tells you another, or if he can’t explain where he’s been, be wary. If he suddenly becomes extra nice, or showering you with gifts for no apparent reason he could be trying to heal his guilty heart. When he is a guard dog and sentry of his phone, takes quiet, hushed phone calls in another room on purpose, or is extra sensitive of you being anywhere near his phone, he may have something to hide. If his tastes in music, movies, clothes, food and other things change suddenly, be mindful of this. If he takes extra time in the mirror, has gotten a new look or fancy clothes he may also have been led astray. One final clue is when he avoids talking about the future. This can also tip you off that he may be cheating. For more signs of a cheating man, read Is He Cheating on You? 829 Telltale Signs by Ruth Houston.