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7 Relationship Mistakes That Can Destroy a Marriage

You know how important a strong and healthy marriage is to your overall happiness and well-being. Unfortunately, there are certain mistakes that many couples unintentionally make that can unknowingly chip away at the foundation of their relationship. In this article, we will explore seven common relationship mistakes that have the potential to destroy a marriage. By understanding and avoiding these pitfalls, you can safeguard your marriage and create a loving and long-lasting partnership. Together, let's uncover the key factors that can make or break a relationship, and gain valuable insights on how to build a strong and successful marriage.

7 Relationship Mistakes That Can Destroy a Marriage

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Table of Contents

Lack of Communication

Not expressing feelings

One of the biggest mistakes that can destroy a marriage is not expressing your feelings to your partner. Communication is the foundation of any healthy relationship, and when you fail to share your emotions, it can lead to misunderstandings and resentment. It's important to express both positive and negative feelings, as this allows for open and honest dialogue between you and your partner.

Avoiding difficult conversations

Avoiding difficult conversations is another communication mistake that couples often make. It can feel uncomfortable to address tough topics, but avoiding them only allows the issues to fester and grow. It's important to have those uncomfortable conversations to find resolutions and work through problems together. By avoiding these conversations, you risk building a wall between you and your partner, preventing true understanding and connection.

Not actively listening

Communication is a two-way street, and one key aspect of effective communication is actively listening to your partner. Many couples fall into the trap of either not listening at all or listening only to respond. Truly listening means giving your partner your full attention, acknowledging their feelings, and seeking to understand their perspective. Failure to actively listen can lead to miscommunication, misunderstandings, and feelings of being ignored or invalidated.

Failure to communicate needs and expectations

Another communication mistake that can destroy a marriage is the failure to communicate needs and expectations. Your partner cannot read your mind, and it's important to clearly communicate what you need from the relationship. This includes expressing your expectations and discussing how you can both meet each other's needs. By failing to communicate these fundamental aspects, you risk building resentment and disappointment, leading to a breakdown in the relationship.

Lack of Trust

Cheating or infidelity

Cheating or infidelity is one of the most significant breaches of trust in a marriage. When one partner strays outside the boundaries of the relationship, it can cause deep wounds that are often challenging to heal. Rebuilding trust after infidelity requires open communication, honesty, and a commitment to repairing the relationship.

Dishonesty and lying

Honesty is the bedrock of trust in any relationship. When one partner consistently lies or withholds information, it erodes trust and creates a barrier between them. Open and transparent communication is essential to maintain trust in a marriage. Being honest, even when it's difficult, is crucial for building and maintaining a strong foundation of trust.

Breaking promises

Keeping promises is a crucial aspect of maintaining trust in a marriage. When one partner repeatedly breaks promises or fails to follow through on commitments, it can lead to feelings of disappointment and betrayal. Trust is built on consistency and reliability, so it's important to communicate honestly about what can and cannot be promised and to fulfill commitments.

Not maintaining confidentiality

Confidentiality is a significant component of trust in a marriage. When one partner shares personal information or secrets with the expectation of privacy, it is vital to respect that trust. Sharing private details with others without consent can break the trust between partners and lead to feelings of betrayal.

Lack of transparency

Transparency in a marriage helps build trust and ensures that both partners are on the same page. When one partner hides information or keeps secrets, it creates doubt and suspicion. Being open and transparent about finances, personal struggles, and important decision-making fosters trust and strengthens the bond between partners.

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Lack of Emotional Intimacy

Neglecting emotional needs

Emotional intimacy is the ability to connect deeply with your partner on an emotional level. Neglecting your partner's emotional needs can lead to feelings of loneliness and detachment. It's important to prioritize emotional connection and to actively show your partner that their emotions matter to you. This includes being present, empathizing with their feelings, and offering support when they need it.

Emotional disconnection

Emotional disconnection can slowly erode the foundation of a marriage. When partners become emotionally distant, they may feel like they are living separate lives. It's important to cultivate emotional intimacy through open communication, spending quality time together, and actively engaging in activities that strengthen the emotional bond between you and your partner.

Failing to provide support

Support is an essential aspect of a healthy and thriving marriage. When one partner fails to provide emotional support, it can lead to feelings of neglect and resentment. Offering support means being there for your partner during both the ups and downs of life, listening without judgment, and providing reassurance and encouragement.

Lack of empathy

Empathy is the ability to understand and share the feelings of your partner. When empathy is lacking in a marriage, it can create an emotional divide between partners. Taking the time to truly understand and validate your partner's emotions can help foster emotional intimacy and strengthen the connection between you.

Negative Communication Patterns

Criticism and blaming

Criticism and blaming are destructive communication patterns that can harm a marriage. When partners constantly criticize and blame each other, it creates an atmosphere of negativity and defensiveness. It's important to communicate concerns and frustrations in a constructive way that focuses on finding solutions rather than placing blame.


Defensiveness is a common response in a tense or conflictual conversation, but it can hinder effective communication. When one partner becomes defensive, it closes off the opportunity for understanding and resolution. It's important to approach conversations with an open mind, listening to your partner's perspective without becoming defensive.

Stonewalling and withdrawal

Stonewalling and withdrawal occur when one partner shuts down and withdraws from a conversation or the relationship entirely. This can be incredibly damaging, as it prevents effective communication and leaves the other partner feeling ignored and invalidated. It's crucial to address issues and conflicts head-on, rather than avoiding them or shutting down completely.

Contempt and disrespect

Contempt and disrespect can destroy a marriage, as they breed resentment and a lack of emotional connection. It's essential to treat your partner with kindness, respect, and empathy. Communicate with love and compassion, avoiding derogatory language or belittling behaviors.

Using hurtful language

Using hurtful language, insults, or derogatory comments can inflict deep wounds on a marriage. Words have power, and using hurtful language can break down the trust and emotional connection between partners. It's important to choose your words carefully, speaking with kindness and respect even in moments of frustration or anger.

7 Relationship Mistakes That Can Destroy a Marriage

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Financial Issues

Excessive spending or financial irresponsibility

Financial issues can put a strain on any marriage, and excessive spending or financial irresponsibility can lead to serious conflicts. It's crucial to have open and honest conversations about your financial situation, establish a budget, and make joint decisions about spending and saving.

Hiding financial information or lying about money

Transparency and honesty are crucial when it comes to financial matters in a marriage. Hiding financial information or lying about money can break down trust and lead to resentment. It's important to be upfront about your financial situation and work together to make informed decisions.

Financial infidelity

Financial infidelity occurs when one partner hides money, makes secret purchases, or engages in financial activities without the other's knowledge or consent. This can lead to a breakdown in trust and create a sense of betrayal. Maintaining open and honest communication about money can prevent financial infidelity and strengthen the bond between partners.

Different financial goals or priorities

It's common for couples to have different financial goals and priorities. However, failing to communicate and find a compromise can lead to conflicts. It's important to have open discussions about your financial goals, values, and priorities to ensure that you are working together towards a common financial future.

Lack of Quality Time

Neglecting to prioritize spending time together

In the busyness of life, it's easy for couples to neglect spending quality time together. However, failing to prioritize time for each other can lead to feelings of neglect and disconnection. Make a conscious effort to set aside dedicated time for your partner, whether it's a regular date night or shared activities.

Not engaging in shared activities or interests

Engaging in shared activities and interests is an important way to strengthen the bond between partners. When couples neglect to participate in activities they both enjoy, it can lead to a sense of growing apart. Make an effort to find common hobbies or interests that you both can enjoy together.

Becoming absorbed in individual routines or interests

While it's important to have individual interests and routines, becoming too absorbed in them can lead to a lack of quality time in a marriage. It's essential to strike a balance between individual pursuits and spending time together as a couple. Being mindful of the time you allocate to each aspect can help maintain a strong and connected marriage.

Ignoring the importance of date nights and vacations

Date nights and vacations provide an opportunity to reconnect and create new memories as a couple. Neglecting these special times can contribute to a sense of monotony and routine in a marriage. It's important to prioritize and plan for regular date nights and vacations to keep the spark alive and ensure that you are nurturing your relationship.

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Unresolved Conflict

Avoiding conflict

Avoiding conflict may seem like an easy solution in the short term, but it can have long-lasting negative effects on a marriage. Unresolved conflicts fester and can lead to a breakdown in communication and emotional intimacy. It's important to address conflicts head-on, approaching them with a willingness to listen, understand, and find a resolution.

Constantly arguing without resolution

Continuous arguing without reaching a resolution can be exhausting and detrimental to a marriage. It's important to approach disagreements with a mindset of finding common ground and compromise. Strive for effective communication and actively work towards resolving conflicts rather than perpetuating them.

Using personal attacks during disagreements

Engaging in personal attacks during disagreements is damaging to both partners and the relationship as a whole. It's essential to communicate frustrations or disagreements without resorting to insults or hurtful comments. Focus on the issue at hand and work towards finding a solution together, rather than attacking each other personally.

Refusing to compromise or find common ground

A refusal to compromise or find common ground can lead to an impasse in a marriage. It's important to approach conflicts with a willingness to reach a resolution that takes both partners' needs into account. Finding a compromise demonstrates respect for each other's perspectives and fosters a sense of teamwork and unity.

Inadequate Emotional Support

Not being there for each other during difficult times

Being emotionally supportive during difficult times is an essential part of a committed relationship. When one partner fails to be there for the other during challenging moments, it can lead to feelings of isolation and distance. It's important to provide a listening ear, empathize with your partner's struggles, and offer reassurance and comfort.

Failure to provide emotional reassurance

Emotional reassurance is vital for maintaining a sense of security and trust in a marriage. When one partner fails to provide this reassurance, it can lead to feelings of insecurity and doubt. Show your partner that you are there for them by offering words of affirmation, physical affection, and a listening ear.

Tendency to dismiss or invalidate emotions

Dismissing or invalidating your partner's emotions can cause deep emotional pain and erode the emotional connection in a marriage. It's important to respect and validate each other's feelings, even if you may not fully understand or agree with them. Listening and acknowledging your partner's emotions without judgment goes a long way in fostering emotional support.

Ignoring the need for physical affection and intimacy

Physical affection and intimacy are important components of a healthy marriage. Neglecting these needs can lead to feelings of loneliness and rejection. It's crucial to prioritize physical affection and intimacy, ensuring that both partners feel desired and loved. Communication about each other's needs and desires in this area is essential for maintaining a strong emotional bond.

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Neglecting Personal Growth

Failure to focus on individual development

Personal growth is a lifelong journey, and neglecting this aspect can hinder the growth of a marriage. It's important for both partners to focus on their individual development, pursuing their passions, and setting personal goals. Supporting each other's personal growth enhances self-fulfillment and can contribute to a stronger partnership.

Not prioritizing self-care

Self-care is an essential part of maintaining overall well-being and happiness. Neglecting self-care can lead to burnout and feelings of resentment. It's crucial for each partner to prioritize self-care and communicate their needs to their spouse. Ensuring that both partners have the time and resources to take care of themselves strengthens the individuals and the marriage.

Lack of personal interests or hobbies

Having personal interests and hobbies outside of the marriage is healthy and contributes to overall happiness. It's important for each partner to maintain their individuality by pursuing their own interests. Sharing these interests with each other can also create opportunities for bonding and connection.

Ignoring personal goals and aspirations

Ignoring personal goals and aspirations can lead to dissatisfaction and regret in a marriage. It's important for both partners to support each other's dreams and aspirations, even if they may not fully align with their own. Communicating about personal goals and finding ways to support each other's ambitions fosters mutual growth and fulfillment.

Extended Periods of Resentment

Holding grudges

Holding onto grudges can poison a marriage and create a toxic environment. Lingering resentment and unresolved issues can lead to prolonged periods of unhappiness. It's important to address conflicts, resolve them, and let go of grudges in order to move forward and rebuild trust and emotional connection.

Unaddressed past hurts

Unaddressed past hurts have the power to fester and intensify over time. If the wounds from past conflicts or instances of betrayal are not properly addressed, they can eat away at the foundation of a marriage. Open and honest communication about past hurts is essential for healing and moving forward as a couple.

Unresolved issues

Unresolved issues can become recurring sources of tension in a marriage. It's important to address and resolve conflicts rather than allowing them to linger. Seeking professional help, such as couples therapy, can provide a safe and constructive environment to work through unresolved issues and find resolution.

Refusing to forgive and let go

Refusing to forgive and let go of past transgressions can hinder personal growth and damage the marriage. Forgiveness is a choice that allows both partners to heal and move forward. It's important to work through the process of forgiveness, both individually and as a couple, in order to rebuild trust and maintain a healthy relationship.

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