When is it time to call an end to your marriage? For some people, there’s a line that gets crossed — physical abuse or adultery are often precursors to divorce — but many people just get to a place where they’re just unhappy. No one big thing brought them to that point.
Is it fair to divorce your spouse just because you aren’t happy being married anymore?
Overwhelmingly, experts say that it is. Research indicates that staying in an unhappy marriage can lead to both physical and emotional illnesses. The danger signs of seriously unhappy marriage are often easy to spot:
1. A lack of physical intimacy can be the death knell of a marriage. Injury or illness aside, sex should still be an important part of your marriage. Even if something is preventing sexual activity, you and your spouse should still show each other signs of intimacy, like cuddling and kissing.
2. You’ve stopped sharing the little things. If you no longer bother to fill your spouse in on the little details of the day, like the office gossip or your frustration over a failed recipe, you’ve probably stopped talking about anything that isn’t necessary to keep the household functioning. That’s a sign that you’d rather talk to someone — maybe anyone — else.
3. The rough patch has gone on for more than two years. Every marriage has rough spots, but an extended run is a sign that at least one of you doesn’t care enough to change things for the better. If you did, one of you would have proposed therapy or made an effort to rekindle your romance.
4. You’ve already started to detach yourself. This can take the form of imagining yourself without your spouse and picturing the life you’d have if you were alone. You may have also stopped fighting over any old issues in your marriage, either, because the fight no longer seems worth it or you just don’t want to deal with the emotions it brings up. Alternately, you may disengage by being critical of your partner and defensive about your own position. All of these are signs that you’re preparing yourself emotionally to move on.
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