Is Your Partner a Compulsive Cheat?

Written by Salina Jivani

No one ever steps into a relationship thinking that one day, they may be the victim of cheating or infidelity. It’s one of those things you simply can’t imagine happening to you, but unfortunately, people fall prey to cheaters all the time.

With Facebook and online apps making it easier than ever to mingle and meet, it’s no wonder all of a sudden finding your beau in the arms of another is an all too common, but still devastating, experience.

And maybe you’re aware of a slip or discrepancy on his part that took place years ago, but your partner has vowed since then that it’ll never, ever, ever happen again. And you believe him. But how can you tell whether he’s really cleaned up his act, or just preparing for an encore?

These three telltale signs reveal the characteristics of someone who is compelled to cheat…and more than just once.

Your relationship is an emotional roller coaster…and they love it

Most people are very content, even placid with having a smooth sailing, emotionally stable relationship. But run, run as fast as you can if you’re with someone who seems to thrive off the constant highs and lows of your relationship battles while you’re left to feel emotionally drained and exhausted. Why? Because people who enjoy these kinds of thrills (in this case, the thrill of making and breaking up) are usually those most susceptible to seeking the thrill of an affair or an extramarital relationship.

They have a fear of being lonely

No ones like feeling left out or alone, but cheaters often have an overwhelming fear of becoming lonely. So to create a sense of security, they keep their prospects open, seeking a constant supply of love and support from multiple people just in case one of their relationships do go awry. In their short sightedness, however, what they don’t realize is once they get caught, they’ll end up losing it all and in turn inviting the very loneliness they fear.

They’re not content

As humans, we always yearn for that one thing that life lacks—and for the most part, that’s normal. But cheaters cheat because a significant need—either emotional or physical—is not being met in their current relationship to the point where they desire its fulfillment. And so they seek that fulfillment elsewhere.

If you sense your partner is unhappy, try talking to them. If that still doesn’t resolve anything or help you gear your relationship in a more positive direction, consider stepping out.

Admitting your relationship is on the rocks or nearly over is difficult, particularly if you’re in a long-term commitment. But remember that allowing yourself to become prey to the destructive behaviors of a cheater can be more damaging and draining in the long haul. If you’re not sure you’re ready to break off your relationship, at least consider healthy ways to repair it, such as through counseling or therapy. And remember, any relationship that’s worth keeping takes time, patience and tons and tons of love.

5 Careless Ways You’re Harming Your Marriage

Written by Salina Jivani

No one ever said marriage was easy. Yet when you tie the knot and promise yourself to someone for eternity, never in your wildest imagination can you anticipate all the hurdles, roadblocks and disagreements that will wedge their way between you and your loved one at some point or another.

Though we know that happily ever after isn’t always…well, happy, and that the occasional (and even daily) bickering is inevitable, it’s not okay to ruin your chances of marital bliss by practicing some routine no-nos. Commit one of the below five offenses, and you’re just setting yourself—and your marriage—up to be on the rocks for the long haul.

You play the brutal blame game

Saying “I told you so” is sooo tempting! And it’s especially gratifying when your partner did something wrong because they didn’t listen to you. Come on, we’re human! So yes, if you do this occasionally, we may turn the other shoulder, but making a habit of constantly pinning the blame on your partner for everything and anything that goes wrong is plain wrong, not to mention annoying.

There’s only so much he or she will tolerate of your constant blaming. And after that? Well, they’ll eventually tune you, and your accusations, out. Meaning that soon, your words will fall on deaf ears. Yeah. Picture talking to a wall.

So, if you want those “I told you so’s” to result in actionable improvements in the future where your spouse learns from his or her mistakes, make sure you’re picky about what situations truly warrant blame. And even then, be tactful about how you address the situation (i.e. don’t let the neighbors hear). Because if you don’t, your words will soon lose their impact—and then you can throw any hope of seeing changes out the window.

You fight over menial things

I remember growing up around parents who fought over anything and everything. From who misplaced the grocery receipt to how much more money the other spent. And I saw how money broke apart our family—in the worst ways possible. I vowed that when I got married, money would never be a topic of argument in my household. And for the most part, I’m proud to say it’s not.

Why?

Don’t get me wrong. Money’s important, but it’s not the end all and be all of the world. What’s here today won’t be tomorrow. If you’re financially stressed, sit down and try to have a calm discussion about what’s wrong (are you not making enough? Is your spending excessive?) and how you can fix it. Make sure you both come to a compromise about what course of action needs to be taken to remediate your financial woes. If it helps, write it down and take baby steps toward your end goal.

He embarrasses you in public

Sometimes spouses can be…well, embarrassing. Come on. You know what I’m talking about. You go out in public and all of a sudden, to your horror, you witness them have an open-mouth-insert-foot moment, and you can’t help but cringe inside while pasting a tight smile on your face.

We’ve all been there. And that’s okay. But how do you react when your sig-fig says something completely crazy? Do you sit tight and wait till you’re out of public eye to chastise him or do you tear him apart right there in front of everyone? It doesn’t take a genius to guess which of those options is the no-no.

No matter how humiliated you feel, putting your spouse down in public will only negatively impact people’s perception of you both, and probably do more damage to your relationship than your spouse’s goof up (we assume!). But more importantly, it’s going to hurt your relationship with your spouse.

In these cringe-worthy cases, the best thing to do is to laugh off their goof-up, or ignore it and change the topic. Remember: the bigger you make it in front of people, the bigger it’ll be when it’s just the two of you hashing it out.

You don’t talk about your issues

I’m going to go back to the example of my parents (can you tell they had an “ideal” marriage?!). They NEVER talked out their issues. Well…can’t say never. They did all the time—in front of their friends, the neighbors, the world. The rest of the time, they were too busy trying to out-do giving each other the silent treatment. In the early years of their marriage, that silence lasted for just a few hours, then a few years down, several days. And by the time they were filing for divorce nearly 35 years later, they could literally go months without talking and barely notice.

If you’re notorious for giving each other the cold shoulder instead of trying to work through your problems, stop! It takes a lot to put your pride aside sometimes and approach your spouse—even if you both know they’re in the dead wrong. But if you feel your marriage and love are worth the vows you took, make open communication a regular part of your make-up routine (among other amazing practices!). Once you get in the habit of talking to each other instead of going silent and shoving your issues under the proverbial rug until the next big argument, it’ll become easier to do so. And the more you can communicate, the more you can improve and compromise and understand each other. It’s a win-win all around—so why not?!

You never take his side in public

We’ve all been in that awkward situation where you’re asked or put in a position to choose a side between your spouse and your parent. It’s not a pretty place to be (and that’s why someone needs to create tele-transportation—soon!). There may be times when your spouse is in the dead wrong, but how you repeatedly handle situations when it comes to choosing between your spouse and someone else can mean the difference between strengthening your relationship or deteriorating it.

If you constantly side with the other party—even when your spouse is in the wrong—you’re only serving to humiliate them and lose the respect of your relationship in the eyes of your audience. If the other party constantly sees you on the opposite side of the fence from your spouse, it’s likely they’ll see this as a sign that’s it’s okay to continue making you pick sides against him or her. And they might even think it’s okay to bad mouth your spouse to you or in front of you.

Remember that in front of people and in situations where the two of you may be pitted against each other, the way you handle the situation relays a lot about the strength of your relationship. If you show people that you’re a unified front, they’re a lot less likely to try and break you apart. But if you show them you’re already at discord, it’s likely they’ll only serve to drive you further away.

In the end, if your actions feel mean-spirited or don’t give you a warm-fuzzy feeling inside, it likely means that your approach is wrong. Think with a clear head, take a few minutes away from each other and ask yourself how you’d like to be treated by your spouse in a similar situation. It really is just as simple as that…sometimes 😉

How to Tell If Your Relationship Needs CPR

Written by Salina Jivani

couple-fight-1907121Relationships can be a funny thing.  One minute you’re sneaking snuggles in the movie theater and the next, you’re restraining yourself from hurling a laundry basket at your so-called other half. Strangely, these polar extreme sentiments are completely normal facets of relationships. In fact, it’s when you don’t have those highs and lows that you should worry. And based on many relationship experts and a wealth of research, that worry should be taken seriously when four particular signs of trouble constantly lurk around:

Constant fighting

It’s okay to have the occasional argument and even suffer daily tiffs, but when the fighting tends to spiral out of control because of something as silly as who left the toilet seat up (or down), there’s a good likelihood that the frustration roots from something deeper than just that. If you feel constantly upset and irritated at actions of your significant other that seem trivial to spectators around you, it’s likely that you’re harboring some bitterness or remorse about something else. And to have those emotions blow up and out of control, day in and day out—constantly—is not okay. Or normal.

You don’t share anything with each other

You love to share your deepest secrets with your partners. Or at least you used to. Initially, this trust and confidence is what attracts you to each other and brings you closer together. A healthy relationship builds on those elements of companionship. But if you notice that you’ve gradually or suddenly become distant from each other, and live in near-alien existence where one of you has no clue what’s going on in the other’s life, that’s not okay. Even worse, if neither of you has made any attempt to address the issue to the point where your lack of communication has become the norm, beware. You’re treading on fragile foundation.

There’s no affection

The initial part of a typical relationship is filled with endless hours of intimacy, groping, and lustful glances. But once the honeymoon phase wears off, it’s normal to have some fun…at least occasionally. But if you or your partner has suddenly lost interest in intimacy and you can’t remember the last time you’ve made whoopee, and, even worse, you don’t miss it, well, now that’s a pretty big problem. Intimacy isn’t just about sex—it’s much deeper than that. In fact, it’s scientifically proven that people who have sex together share a stronger emotional bond. So if your relationship is missing the key element of touch, it’s likely you’re disconnected in a much larger way than you may realize.

You dream of running away… and feel happy

We all occasionally have that desire to just step away or escape, whether that means taking a spontaneous vacation solo or driving around town at midnight with the windows rolled down. So it should be no surprise that the same desire for some space from your loved one is completely normal. But what’s not okay is if you daydream about escaping and actually get excited about the prospect of a life without your partner. If you’re harboring these thoughts on a frequent basis, ask yourself whether you’re truly in the relationship because you want to be or because something is holding you back from leaving. Sometimes the culprit may be something as simple as fear or even the gossip mill.

Having one or more of these signs present in your relationship indicate that something isn’t completely right with you and your partner, but remember: as fragile as relationships can be, they are also just as resilient. If you find that you’re panicked or surprised that your relationship has many of these red flags, take a moment to think about what it is you really want to do about it. If you’re eager to repair the crevices in your relationship, it’s often doable, but will require a strong effort on both your end and your partner’s. Talk to your partner, address your concerns and think about the best option or solution. Remember that breaking off a relationship—especially one that you’ve invested in long-term—is never easy. But sometimes, it’s just what you need to find happiness and move on into greener pastures.