I was very excited when I decided to write about this topic. The idea of writing about things that intentionally or unintentionally kill relationships intrigued me. But I did not want to restrict this blog to my experiences or point of views only. So, I decided to do something NEW! I carried out a small survey on random samples to know what ruined their relationships for them. The responses were overwhelming and better than I had expected. When I checked my inbox this morning, I had received over a hundred responses. It was not something that I was expecting.
All the responses were personal and very real. While they all were great, it was impossible to squeeze in all of them in one article. So, I took the liberty of choosing the best ones. Here are 18 things that kill a good relationship. Who knows, they might just teach you a thing or two about your own relationship.
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18. Not being presentable enough
In case you don’t find this a problem so big that it could ruin a relationship, allow me to elaborate on it. No matter how much you claim to be attracted to inner beauty more than the outer, you need some kind of physical attraction in a partner that makes you stay in a relationship with them. This could be anything. Their eyes, their smile or even their posture. Hello, Ryan Gosling?! And even if they don’t necessarily have the physical assets of a Greek God, they should be willing to make the best of what they have and be their finest self. That is when the presentation part of it comes in! It does not matter if you look good. You should always try to appear good. Nobody likes people who are bedhead throughout the day.
- Dress to impress
- Fix your hair (get a proper haircut)
- Deodorise yourself
- Learn to talk
Some of the easiest things to do and yet the most essential ones. Groom yourself if you don’t want to ruin your relationship.
17. Lack of Communication
One of the obvious ones, I don’t think this needs any explanation. This is one of the first things that couples are asked to work on. Most of the relationships end because they don’t have a proper communication channel. This leads to misunderstandings and several complications. Eventually, it kills a relationship. But do you think it happens overnight? Absolutely not! It happens slowly. Just like anything else. And what is bad is that you are a part of it and what is even worse is that you don’t even realise that you have messed it up. Obviously, you can’t blame just one of the two partners for it. There should always be one partner who should be willing to initiate the conversation and the other should be open to criticism. That is how the wheel rolls.
16. Trust issues
We all have read countless WhatsApp jokes about women doubting men and going to lengths to expose them. But we also know that doubt and suspicion is not something that is restricted to only women. Countless men find it hard to completely trust their partners. So, it is safe to say that both the sexes are flawed and need to work on themselves. Issues with trust are stemmed from having insecurities about your own self. As a human being, it is quite easy to point errors in others but extremely difficult to find flaws in yourself. When you don’t accept the wrong in you, you project it on other people. So, if you think you can’t trust your partner when they have never done anything wrong to you, maybe you should introspect before you lose them.
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Trust issues give rise to doubt. We doubt only those whom we don’t trust. Several people believe doubt is one of the things that kill a happy relationship. And they are right. In fact, doubt and jealousy are among the primary reasons for domestic violence not only in India but around the world. This violence goes both ways. Both men and women physically and mentally abuse their partners out of jealousy and suspicion. It allows them to feel potent and the dominant one in the relationship. Not only does this inevitably kill a good relationship but it also destroys a person’s mental health. While not all doubt leads to abuse, it certainly proves to be incredibly unhealthy.
14. A superficial eligibility criteria
Most of us have a type and it is more like a checklist of qualities that we wish our partner to have. And that is okay. It is okay if you judge you determine whether or not your partner is good for you before you begin dating. Once you get into a relationship, this criteria needs to change. For instance, if you began dating your partner because they treated you nicely, you cannot break up with them because suddenly they are not being nice enough to you. That is not possible.
In such a case, you need to alter your list a little and see how nice they are when faced with a certain situation. Are they nice only when they feel that they should be? What extent is their niceness to? Is there anything that pushes their buttons that makes them stop being nice? When you focus on understanding why a person behaves a certain way, the chances of the relationship surviving increase.
Moreover, your requirement list should be something that is realistic. If you add ‘should have a flying pony’ or ‘must have a BMW,’ you are just reducing your possibility of finding a good partner. Remember that we all want Joseph Gordon-Levitt and it is nice and all, but having Seth MacFarlane (super talented, funny, comic genius, amazing writer, splendid voiceover artist, and the list continues…) is equally good.
13. Outsiders’ suggestions
Only those involved in the relationship know exactly what goes on inside it. And I agree that sometimes you need an outsider’s perspective. However, letting an outsider direct your relationships can ruin relationships within no time. Frankly, this could easily be one of the top five reasons that kill relationships. Sure, your best friend gives you the best advice in the world and there is no doubt that they know you very well. But there is a reason that they call it a suggestion or advice and not the final decision. They are supposed to be considered and not blindly followed. But alas! We believe in outsiders more than our own judgement and that is why so many people listed this one as the reason that ruins a good relationship.
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12. Other people
This one is not the same as the above reason. By other people, I mean a third person. Close to 5% of the people said that another person killed their relationship. This means someone better entered their partner’s life and they chose the other person instead of them. Now, this is not something that you can control so if you have found yourself in such a situation, don’t beat yourself up. There is no way you could prevent that from happening. The best thing to do is remove yourself from the equation entirely and allow yourself to feel happy again.
11. Too many expectations
We only expect things from people who we think are capable of fulfiling them. Expectations are something so precious that you just don’t go around having with every second person you see. So, when we find someone who meets the criteria, we tend to give them a little more than they bargained for. For some people, expecting as little as being responsible or planning dates can turn the whole relationship upside down. And that is why this is such a common reason for relationships ending on a bad note. Therefore, it is very important that you limit your expectations because not every person would be willing to accept it. Also, you should always know better than to burden someone with your needs.
Raise your hand if you have answered the question that you asked your partner before allowing them to speak because you thought you already knew what they were going to say. Guilty? We all are. It may not seem like such a big deal but did you know that there are several people who think their partner’s presumptions ruined their relationship? Nobody likes a Mr Know-It-All. Listen before you assume things. It is a golden tip.
9. Silence after a fight
Similar to lack of communication, holding your silence after a fight because you don’t want to be the first one to initiate the conversation has killed countless happy relationships. It shows a lack of maturity. There are so many couples that go days without talking to each other. And when they do decide to talk, their relationship loses its essence because it just goes to show the importance that you have in each other’s life. Sure, there will always be a knot after you have broken the thread, but that does not mean that you can’ move past it and bring your lives on track. But most people choose to wait for the other person and they end up losing a good relationship.
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8. Losing a friend in your partner
You can’t have a relationship with someone who is not your friend. So, when you lose your friend in your partner, you lose your relationship, too. In fact, if given the choice, you should always choose your friendship over your relationship because it is easy to fall in love with a friend than to befriend a lover.
7. Attitude and behavioural issues
Being a woman, I can immediately relate this to the wave of women empowerment that has hit the world – feminism. Every day, I spend at least an hour correcting women’s perception of feminism. The misunderstanding of this term has led to so many attitudinal and behavioural problems in women that it is ruining relationships everywhere. And that is just one thing. There are many more such things that have successfully managed to kill good relationships. Thanks to stubbornness, misconceptions and resistance to change.
6. Money contaminating the love
Every couple has a unique way of dealing with money matters. So, I can’t tell you how to manage your finances in a relationship. But you must remember not to let money contaminate your love. There are countless people who regret the way they handled their monetary matters with their partners and if given a chance, they are willing to rectify their mistakes. Unfortunately, you only get one shot and they had theirs. And till the time they realised what had gone, they had already killed their relationship.
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I don’t think this requires any explanation because we all know what ignorance can lead to. Actually, if you come to think of it, there can be no mature relationship that can involve ignorance. It can only be present in people who are new to the dating scene and lack the maturity to understand the consequences of their actions. Several people believe that their relationship was killed because they stopped getting a proper response from their partners and that they felt neglected. This made them feel less important and they eventually ended up leaving their partners.
People tend to ignore those that are not only less important to them but also that don’t intrigue them anymore. So, if you are bored with your partner or simply don’t find them to be attractive anymore, do them and yourself a favour and be honest with them. You will be saving a lot of their time and tissues!
4. Trying to change each other
I mean it when I say that trying to change someone too much can ruin your equation with them. Notice the emphasis on the words ‘too much?’ It is important that you don’t forget that. As a partner, it is your responsibility to improve your partner and turn them into a better person. If you don’t do that, it is a problem. Improving their dressing style, table manners and even investment plans, for that matter, is really okay. In fact, it should be encouraged. But when you try to turn your partner into something they are not just because it makes it easy for you to love them or because you have a different notion for an ideal partner/relationship is plain stupidity. So, if your relationship gets killed in the process, you would have only yourself to blame because nobody likes having a policeman around.
3. Placing blame
There is a time and a place for everything. If there is one thing that I have learnt in all my years of existence, it is that you should keep quiet in the wrong situation no matter how right you know you are. You have to pick your time and moment for having the spotlight. That is how relationships work.
On the other hand, repeatedly placing blame on someone regardless of whether or not they have apologised for their mistake is bad for any relationship. Learn to let it go. If your partner cheated on you in the past and you willingly decided to live with them even after knowing what they did, you don’t get to be in a place where you can blame them for cheating on you forever. You would never be able to have a normal relationship that way, and your chance of being happy would not be in sight. So, you have to choose your priorities. Are you willing to place blame and live in despair for the rest of your life or are you willing to hold your tongue and actually having a loving relationship?
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Let’s establish one thing that we are not talking about the usual lies here like complimenting your partner’s bad artwork just to make them feel good or telling your girlfriend that you are alone at home when you are actually having your guys over for a house party. Those lies are benign. We are talking about being pathological liars here, which means that you or your partner lie to each other without having any personal gain in it.
I remember dating a guy back in high school who lied to me about every other thing. He would lie about having a big house, being rich and even about having an iPhone (it was a big deal at that time because it had recently found its way in India). And I believed him because I could not see a reason for why he would lie. He seemed genuine. Obviously, when I found out the truth from a mutual friend, I was devastated, and I left him. After that, even when he apologised to me, it was hard for me to believe him. His habit of lying cost us not only a relationship but also our friendship.
People lie just because they don’t know anything else. And I should not be telling you that doing this is not healthy because it is a given. But you should know this that when you are a habitual liar, you lose your conscience. So, it is difficult to control the number of lies you tell, even if it is at the cost of your relationship. And that is why lying is such a common cause of breakups.
The moment I saw this response, I could not help but put it on number one on the list. It is something that we can all strongly agree with, and most of us have experienced. In fact, why just a partner? Ego can kill any kind of a happy relationship within seconds.
Ego is practically synonymous with self-importance. Think about it. When someone is drunk on power, they tend to put themselves on a pedestal and show an utter disregard of anyone else’s feelings and thoughts. At that moment, only they exist. And that is nothing but toxic. Humans are meant to be social. Surviving in complete independence is impossible. So, when you think you are more important than others, your condescendence can kill your happy relationship.
As mentioned earlier, many relationships break because of silence. When none of the individuals involved in the relationship is willing to approach the other and resolve the differences, it shows that they have chosen their ego over their partner. And that is when you know your relationship is over for good.
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