4 Signs You May Be Headed for Divorce

Family Law Attorney

 Every relationship is different and comes with its own sets of complications and challenges, as a family law attorney in Fairfax, VA  from a law firm like May Law, LLP, can explain. However, recent research by psychologists at the University of California, Berkeley and Gottman Institute recently revealed that numerous divorces can be forecast based upon the existence of four tell-tale behaviors.

According to the study, the psychologists found that when any of these behaviors frequently happen within a married couple’s 15-minute conversation, the couple is more likely to get a divorce. The study involved 79 couples from the United States and concluded that the prediction method was 93 percent accurate.

If you are worried that your marriage will end in divorce, read on to find out about the four predictor of divorce and how they manifest in a marriage.

Behavior 1: Stonewalling

Participating in frequent, heated fights can be a sign of a marriage’s end, but having no arguments can sometimes be worse. If you or your spouse feels like an argument is about to happen but one or both of you choose to ignore the issue, this behavior is known as stonewalling.

Stonewalling can be described as blocking out your partner by walking away, going on your phone, turning the television on, leaving the house entirely, or other using methods to efficiently shut the other person out. When stonewalling occurs, communication between partners is severed completely, and makes it nearly impossible to address and solve issues.

Behavior 2: Contempt

According to the study, contempt is the worst of these four divorce predictors. Even if the other three behaviors are lacking, a relationship full of contempt could be hard to save. This behavior leads to one partner seeing the other with disdain, scorn, and sometimes disgust. When contempt occurs, a spouse will view the other as beneath them. When a couple is not on equal footing, it is next to impossible to grow and be happy together.

Behavior 3: Criticism

No one enjoys being criticized, especially by their life partner. While everybody has faults, when you start seeing your partner’s faults as flaws of character, these little evaluations can quickly add up. You will start to frequently get annoyed with your spouse and they will get sick of the constant scrutiny.

Behavior 4: Defensiveness

It is not easy to accept your fault in any situation, especially if your mistake was tiny. Despite this, if you always refuse to admit that you were the one in the wrong or never acknowledge your own flaws, these defensive behaviors could end up driving a wedge between you and your partner.

Every relationship has its up and downs. But if you start to notice these four behaviors in your marriage on a daily basis, you should consider what your next step will be. Do you want to fix things, or is filing for divorce the next step?