When your relationship is going smoothly and you are happily in love, it feels as though it’s the two of you against the world. You can achieve anything with that person by your side, and you can’t imagine it ever going south.
But if you’re in a relationship that is struggling, you feel completely the opposite. You may feel negative about your home life, a negativity that leaks into everything and suddenly the world can feel bleak.
If your relationship is stuck, all is not lost and finding the right person to get you back on track can be the solution to getting your team mate back and getting back to taking on the world together.
A secret to relationship success is not waiting until things are dire and seeking help when you first see signs of difficulty and getting some tips on how best to resolve your issues.
Here are eight signs that your relationship may need some professional intervention from a counsellor.
You keep having the same arguments but they never get resolved
Often we have recurring themes in our arguments, but if you feel that you’re not getting heard and you can never reach a resolution or compromise it’s time to find some help.
“If you keep having the same arguments over and over again, it means something isn't working in your communication and conflict resolution,” says Clinton Power of Clinton Power and Associates.
“A trained couples counsellor can give you the tools you need to resolve conflict quickly and effectively.”
You’re afraid of talking
If you’re afraid of bring issues up with your partner you need to ask yourself why. If you are afraid of arguments or conflict then it’s likely a cycle of communication break-down is already at play. If you’re afraid of violence or aggression, then you need definitely need to seek counselling.
You have become apathetic and can‘t be bothered trying to talk
Communication is key to any relationship, it’s how we connect. If you no longer wish to connect with your partner you need to ask why you’re still in the relationship.
“One of the most important aspects of being in a healthy relationship is the ability to communicate about important issues. And of course it's incredibly rewarding to be able to talk to your partner about even mundane day-to-day things, so life isn’t so lonely and you can support each other,” tells Clinton.
If you’re constantly being negative towards each other
If you imagine a relationship as a bank, and every negative comment is a withdrawal, eventually your bank account is going to run out. You need to continuously make relationship deposits to ensure your love stays in credit.
If someone is constantly negative towards you, it’s hard to feel positive towards them. Often negativity is a mindset, so if you need to change your negative mindset a few sessions on the couch might help you out.
If you’re not happy with your sex life
Sex lives wax and wane as a natural part of life, but when sex becomes the elephant in the room and you are not only not doing it, but having trouble talking about it, it might be time for some intervention.
“It’s normal for all couples to go through stages of low and high sexual activity throughout the course of a relationship. However, if you're not having sex with each other for months or even years and you can’t resolve the issue yourself, that's a serious issue that requires professional help,” says Clinton.
“A trained sex therapist or relationship counsellor trained in sexual issues can help you in this case.”
The small issues are becoming big issues
If small issues like picking up shoes or who left the plate by the sink turns into a large argument, it’s possible that you have deeper issue eating away at you underneath.
Getting to the bottom of your conflict may not be easy on your own, you may not even fully understand at a conscious level, so seeking help with the big stuff can improve your relationship so it’s easier for you to let the small stuff slide.
You use threats to influence your partner
Nobody responds well to threats and if you're reducing yourself to threatening to leave or various other negative vibes then it's unlikely that things will turn out well for you.
"Being able to positively influence your partner is an important aspect of any relationship - it’s a good thing and both partners need to be good at it. But if you're using threats to influence your partner, this is damaging and destructive to your relationship. While threats might work in the short term, you're actually undermining your relationship in the long term," believes Clinton.
You want to walk away
If you’re at breaking point and you’re ready to call it quits it’s not too late for professional help.
“Many relationships and marriages can actually start to improve at the point of breaking up. But make no mistake about it, it requires hard work, discipline and commitment,” tells Clinton.
“The sad truth for many people is it's easier to walk away from a relationship than to work on it. That said, some relationships just can't be saved.”
Danielle Colley is a writer, blogger, mum and ice cream afficionado. She is a regular contributor to The Weekly and other online and print publications.
You can see more of Danielle on her blog, Keeping Up With The Holsbys, or her Facebook page facebook.com/keepingupwiththeholsbys.