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Top Ten Reasons Why Couples Divorce

Couples separate for a multitude of reasons, but most marriages end because of a fairly common issues. Whether it be a lack of communication or extreme differences in values, both experts and couples commonly report the following ten reasons for why couples divorce:

1. Lack of Trust.

Believing in your partner is integral to any relationship, and if partners do not trust each other, the relationship is unlikely to last. A lack of trust invites insecurities that are typically damaging to a marriage.

2. Communication Problems.

Effective communication is one of the main reasons any relationship is troubled. If the lines of communication are cut off or nonexistent–if couples do not talk openly about their feelings and needs–then the relationship is inevitably going to fail. Communication is incredibly important for resolving issues and ensuring your partner remains happy in the relationship.

3. Expectations.

Oftentimes, couples have certain expectations of the other person, and if those expectations are not met, it leads to disappointment, disillusionment, and sadness. If couples do not communicate these expectations to their partner, but instead wait for things to change, they will create distance in their relationship. Also, if one partner refuses to be flexible when the other partner tells them about how their expectations are not being met, the relationship is likely to experience a significant strain.

4. Lack of Mutual Respect.

Everyone has disagreements, but when couples are unable to resolve their conflicts because one partner cannot respect the wishes of the other partner, the relationship suffers.

5. Different Goals and Values.

Couples stumble upon major disagreements because they may hold very different values from their partner or may have long-term goals that put a strain on the relationship. One partner may feel as though the other partner is keeping them from achieving something they have worked toward for many years. Or couples may realize they have extremely different values (e.g. religious affiliation, cultural customs, etc.) that seemed inconsequential at the beginning of the marriage, but are actually disruptive to the relationship later on.

6. Finances.

An often cited reason for divorce is a difference of opinion on how to manage finances. If couples cannot agree on how to manage their assets and cash flow, it will often become a regular point of contention. Since money is integral to many aspects of everyday life, couples who do not agree on finances will find themselves fighting often.

7. Marrying for Other People.

Sometimes people get married because they are afraid of disappointing their parents or do not want to hurt their partner by ending the relationship. In any case, marrying for any other reason than because you love and trust your partner invites the potential for turmoil down the road. A divorce is extremely expensive and difficult, and even if the caterer, venue and flowers are all arranged, a marriage should not be made for the sake of other people.

8. Abuse.

If partners are physically or emotionally abusive, the marriage may last a while before the victimized partner finally seeks outside help. Abuse is unacceptable in any relationship, but it is important for married victims to reach out to a trusted line of support in order to find a way out of their relationship.

9. Change.

Whether it be a drastic life event or a slow transition over time, people change. Oftentimes, these changes render a couple incompatible, and if partners are not willing to accommodate the changes their partner has undergone, the marriage is not likely to thrive.

10. No Intimacy.

The spark in a marriage is prone to fizzling for many couples, especially if they have been together for many years or have had children. If physical and emotional intimacy are no longer present in the marriage, it is difficult to maintain a loving and fulfilling relationship. One partner may feel neglected or couples may not know how to get out of a rut, and if these intimacy problems persist, it is difficult to make it out of this slump.

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Balakhane Mediation: Family and Divorce Mediation
Academy of Professional Family Mediators

- Mediation Encourages Collaboration, Cooperation and Mutual Respect -

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