Year after year, January has proven to be the month for the most divorce filings. Many legal experts believe this trend is due to people who know their marriages are ending but hold off during the holidays to file for divorce. Whether it’s a couple with children that want to have one last holiday all together or a couple who decide they are better off to start the new year solo, there’s never a perfect time to disrupt your life with a divorce.
Professional Christian Matchmaker and Relationship Coach Renee Richel addresses the most asked questions about whether your relationship will pass the stress test this new year:
Q: My partner and I seem to get in quite a bit of arguments. How do I know the difference between bickering or an argument that reveals that we have larger issues within our relationship?
A: “Bickering with your partner from time to time is normal. If you spend a lot of time with someone, you’re bound to get on each other’s nerves eventually. However, if the bickering happens more often than you two being in agreement, there are probably some underlying issues. If the normal functioning of your relationship is interfered with by the bickering, the issue is larger than a small disagreement.”
Q: I’m not sure if our arguments or disagreements are really that bad. We seem to be fine afterwards for a while, then it’ll happen again. Are there any signs I should look out for that will indicate our arguments are worse than the usual couple fight?
A: “Being in a constant cycle of arguing and making up is the first sign that things aren’t stable in your relationship. Often there’s a pattern, which is what you need to look out for in order to stop the cycle. After the argument, if you just let it blow over instead of talking it out or coming to a compromise, you’ll feel like you’re constantly walking on eggshells. Some key signs that an argument can lead to deeper issues are tearing each other down, constant accusations, or feeling shameful if your family and friends overheard the argument.”
Q: When we got married, our vows were to love each other in sickness and health, but I feel like my partner only wants to be around me in the good times. How do I bring this up to them? What if they say I’m being too dramatic?
A: “In a healthy relationship, you should be able to open up about your feelings without fear of an adverse reaction. Some couples may understand what it means to stay together in sickness or hardships before they even get married and some may not. What’s important is to show your love and support to your partner and figure out how to navigate through the tough times together along the way. You should bring up why you’re feeling this way and if your partner brushes it off or gets angry, you should reevaluate your relationship. You won’t be able to find someone who is always there for you and loves you through the good and bad if you stay with the wrong person.”
Q: I’m scared to leave my partner. I can tell things aren’t working, but I’m not ready to let go because I don’t know what will happen. How do I move forward?
A: “Any time you step into the unknown, you’re going to be scared. A separation or divorce is a very difficult life changing experience, so do not enter into this decision lightly. But once you’ve made the decision be patient with yourself, it will most likely take a while to get back into the swing of things, whether it’s getting used to life without your partner or getting back into the dating world. It’s important that you focus on what you need to do for yourself: what makes you happy, who you want to spend time with, or where you need to go. By putting yourself first, you will be able to create the life you desire.”
At the end of the day, your happiness and self-worth are what’s most important. If you find yourself realizing your relationship isn’t what you signed up for, don’t be afraid; take the necessary steps to let go and move on. Sometimes two people are just not meant for each other and unfortunately, we discover that after marriage. It’s important to talk about life goals and your ideas of a healthy marriage before it begins, which is why we ask these questions in the beginning of our clients’ journey to find love to ensure their goals and dreams are compatible. If you find yourself back in the dating world this new year, go ahead and fill out a complimentary profile on 1 True Match so we can help you start your journey of reclaiming your life and your happiness.