Every relationship is different, and no two couples are exactly alike. But when it comes to divorce, the driving forces that can split a union are more universal than we’d like to believe. According to divorcehelp360.com, there are five key behaviors that are detrimental to a marriage.

The first is a lack of commitment. It’s easy to get swept away in the wedding planning and believe in happily ever after, but the real work of a marriage begins after the wedding. There is a misconception in our society that if the relationship is “right” or “meant to be,” then it should be easy. But, even for compatible couples, making a marriage work can take a lot of work! According to the National Fatherhood Initiative, 73% of couples interviewed said that they divorced because one or both spouses weren’t willing to work out their problems.

The second activity that may lead to divorce is fighting too much. Arguing itself is not bad, as conflicts are natural and normal in healthy relationships, but it’s the type of fighting that matters. If one spouse has to be the “winner” of an argument, fights become less about negotiating and working out problems together and more about being “right.” If partners won’t back down until the other agrees with them, frustration and tensions mount and old arguments will be brought up again and again.

Selfishness and a lack of communication can be destructive to a marriage as well. Many individuals have filed for divorce because they felt under-appreciated or that their spouse was too critical of them. Couples with poor communication skills easily drift apart from each other, especially if there is someone else outside the marriage that they communicate really well with.

Speaking of someone else outside the marriage, infidelity is also a major cause of divorce. Affairs often begin as an emotional affair, where an individual confides in and feels understood by someone other than their spouse. When an affair does occur, it can be very difficult for couples to regain trust. Without trust, a marriage cannot survive.

The last factor that can lead to divorce, according to the website, is marrying too young. Almost 50% of teenage marriages end within the first 15 years, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. For marriages that begin when partners are in their mid-twenties, the divorce rate is closer to 35%. People grow and change a lot in the college age years. Some couples grow together, but many grow up and grow apart.

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