10 Reasons Why Relationships Fail

Why Relationships Fail

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Relationships fail because of various reasons, and it is often difficult to pinpoint the exact reasons people decide to break up. Most of the time, the things that cause relationships to fail happen over a span of time, and these things add up until eventually the relationship can’t be fixed. Today we’ll look at some of the reasons why relationships fail.

“Relationships are scams.”

“There is nothing like true love.”

“All men (or women) cheat.”

These are some of the pessimistic banters that are frequently thrown around lately. It’s unlikely for people who generate or subscribe to this kind of banter to have a good relationship life. You are what you think and say.

Nevertheless, we can’t pretend it’s all easy to be in a relationship. There are people who breathe positivity everyday and yet, things are not the same in their relationship life. It often leaves us wondering, what went wrong? 

In the light of this, I’ll be outlining 10 different possibilities and answers as to why relationships fail.


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1. Communication 

Communication is a primary factor in human society. Misunderstandings happen when there’s little or no effective means of communication which eventually results in a fall out between both parties.

It is noteworthy that communication is not just about the quantity (i.e. how much you call or text each other), it’s also about the quality of your conversations. Sometimes, we get so carried away with our regular activities and chasing the bag that we forget how to have a proper conversation with our loved ones. 

Before you know it, chemistry starts wearing off, observing quality time becomes boring and you both start yelling over something as trivial as a cone of ice cream. To break the jinx of poor communication which eventually leads to misunderstandings and a failed relationship, ensure you:

Ask open ended questions

If for instance, your partner has had a filled day of practice for an upcoming tournament/competition, it’s best you ask “How was practice today?” 

This gives room for a continuous and of course engaging conversation instead of the casual “I trust your practice was good?” which yields a tiring yes or no answer and nothing more. 

Be mindful of body language

What if they say their day was fine but their countenance says “I almost went bananas in that boardroom”? You should ask further questions for assurance. 

However there are 2 good reasons why you should not over do this. Firstly, your partner might not want to talk about whatever is bothering them at the moment and it’s best you let them have their space (or you’ll come across as a nag).  

Secondly, trying to be a mind reader might have you making unnecessary assumptions rather than focusing on the reality. Don’t forget, the goal is to have a successful relationship not be an investigative psychologist.

Tender your listening ear

Constant disagreement and miscommunication might be an indication that you have not been listening to each other. When you do the talking every time without listening to the opinion of the other person, it will not only ruin the relationship, but you’ll come across as selfish, conceited and egoistic.   

However, a relationship where both partners know when to talk less and listen better is  more likely to be successful and of course, enjoyed.

Related: 15 Tips To Improve Communication In a Relationship


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2. Trust Issues

Another reason why relationships fail is because of mistrust. Trust is another huge deal breaker, not just in relationships but also in the secular world. 

The same way it’s impossible to comfortably invest in a trading company that has been accused of financial irregularities is the same way you won’t be comfortable with being in a relationship with someone you don’t trust. 

When couples do not trust each other, suspicion starts and unnecessary speculations are brought into the picture. If your daydreaming only revolves around your partner hooking up and flirting with another person when they say they need to make a quick stop at the grocery shop or travel for a business meeting, you are a candidate for breakup. 

Mistrust causes friction and unhappiness between both parties and before you know it – a breakup happens. However, tackling trust issues is not as complicated as it might look. 

First of all, identify what’s making you doubt your partner’s fidelity. It might be that your love language is “words of assurance” or acts of service, but your partner expresses his love via other love languages like physical touch and gifts. 

What do you do? Communicate!  Talk about it, be expressive and don’t forget to ask the right questions. However, if your past experiences with your ex or an issue of infidelity that once sprung up with your partner has been why you’re having issues with trusting them with your heart, you should consider giving the relationship a break and seeking a therapist’s advice. 

Also read: 10 Ways to build trust in a relationship


3. Unfaithfulness

One of the most common reasons why relationships fail lately is because one individual or both parties refuse to put their faithfulness in check. However, unfaithfulness goes way beyond cheating. In fact, it starts with something as petty as lying (it blossoms with it as well). 

When a partner is untruthful about something, it breaks the heart of the other and sooner or later, they may end the relationship and patiently wait for an honest plain Jane (or Jack) rather than be stuck with a liar. 

It’s easier to know what you’re signing up for when you are still in the talking stage. Don’t fail to recognize those waving red flags no matter how tiny they are because sooner or later, they’ll really matter. 

Moreover, cheating is not part of relationship ups and downs. Don’t fall for it! People often give the “nobody is perfect” excuse for cheating partners and often get stuck with a partner who has no regard for them or the relationship. 

They are the ones who end up engaging in the “all men/women cheat” kind of argument. Cheating is wrong, and you shouldn’t encourage nor condone it. A relationship with a cheating partner is toxic to your socio psychological health and should be discontinued. 


4. Growth 

Growth and the changes that come with it are inevitable in a human society. Over time, human experiences and ideologies are subject to change. Hence, it’s normal for couples to outgrow who they were at the beginning of the relationship. 

However, how these changes are handled will either make or mar the relationship. Not being able to handle a partner’s growth often leads to having a failed relationship. 

For instance, when one partner starts experiencing financial and social progress and the other is yet to reach financial freedom, it’s very possible they call off the relationship especially if finance is a deal breaker in their relationship.

Sometimes, it might be spending too much time apart. Like couples who are too busy with work that they rarely engage in real conversations and get to learn new things about each other. 

If these changes do not align with what they want in the relationship, it may be better they call it quits.  Nevertheless, if you really want your relationship to stand the test of time, here are a few things you should consider:

  • Make time for each other – If we are to go by every wave of occurrence around us, we’d barely have time for ourselves. Therefore, ensure you make time for bonding and reconnecting with your sweetheart. 
  • Accept and handle the change well

I remember a story of how someone’s man got a new job and she had to adjust from seeing her man 2-3 times a week to just once in 2 weeks! Huge, yeah? Initially, it might come off as weird and of course strange. 

However, the earlier you accept the change, the better for you. Someone you met a year ago won’t be the same today. Physically, socially, mentally, or financially, change would have occurred – visible or not (it’s not like you’ll be static either). Hence, accept the growth and move on.


5. Comparison

Comparison isn’t just a killer of joy, it’s a wrecker of relationships. When you start comparing your present relationship with the previous ones, or your friend’s, you are welcoming discontent. When you lack contentment, 2 things are likely to come to play;

  • It’s either you become haughty and egoistic till you start feeling that you are better than everyone else (e.g. the wicked smirk that comes to your face when your friend tells you she and her boyfriend hardly go on dates but you and your partner visit exotic restaurants every Saturday night). Or
  • You suck out every iota of contentment in you and you start making unrealistic demands in order to meet your so called expectations. 

The former might have little or no effect on your relationship. However, the relationship is very  likely to fail when the latter comes to play. 

How do you deal with comparison? Sometimes, comparison comes subtly and you might not know until the first nag happens.  So ensure you have frequent evaluation to know if your relationship is heading for the rocks. 

In cases where the issue is with your partner and not you, ensure you chip in effective communication. Ensure you talk about it and if no correction is made after all is said and done, then you should forgive yourself and move on. 


6. Compatibility 

Relationships often fail due to lack of compatibility. Some people rush into a relationship because they see their friends wearing the relationship tag and go “Oh! this will certainly look good on me”. 

Others do so because they get some chemistry going with someone at the bar and they instantly believe the fireworks will last a lifetime. Don’t conclude after one night, give it a couple of months afterwards. 

In order to avoid the “relationships are scams” narrative, do a compatibility check before saying “yes” to the relationship. Now, being compatible isn’t just about knowing each other’s genotype, ensure you and your potential life mate are:

  • Physically compatible – This is all about the attraction, the butterflies in the tummy and sparks in the sky.
  • Intellectual compatibility – I know he lights up your face, I hope he does the same with your brain?
  • Emotional compatibility – How much do you feel at home and at ease with them?
  • Spiritual compatibility – Ensure your life expectations are in sync with theirs before you start thinking of commitment.


7. Irreconcilable Differences 

When partners can’t agree on important and major issues, there’s usually a fall out between them which eventually leads to a failed relationship. As individuals from different socio-economic backgrounds, we are all raised differently and as a result, our values and belief system differs. Consequently, conflict happens when these differences are not managed well.


8. Compromise

Speaking of managing differences, compromise is the way out. When a partner is egoistic and insists on making a point, it’s very likely their relationship will hit an iceberg. 

Compromise is as simple as accepting others’ views about life issues even when they are different from yours, rather than imposing your views about those issues on them. It’s all about respecting each other’s decisions. 

For relationships to work out, lots of compromises must be made. However, compromises should only be made as long as they pose no threat to your mental or physical wellbeing.


9. Trying Too Hard

A relationship expert once said and I quote “A relationship is like a box of goodies you open on Christmas Day. However, the chocolates, candies and all didn’t just appear there, someone made an effort to buy all the goodies and wrap them in a beautiful box.” 

Yes, relationships require work, but couples shouldn’t feel like it’s too much work. The moment that starts to happen, boredom and resentment subtly sets in and it results in passive aggression which eventually leads to a breakup. Relationships are meant to be enjoyed, hence it’s essential you strike a balance between making an effort and having fun while you are at it. 


10. Unhappiness

Unhappiness is a 2 way thing;

For one, an individual may be personally unhappy and get into a relationship to be happy. Hence, when the other party stops making them happy, they opt for a way out. The other is when a relationship becomes toxic and one or both parties stop being happy due to lack of effective communication, stress, discontent and sometimes abuse. 

What to do? Ensure you don’t rely on others for your happiness, you’ll eventually be disappointed. Also, watch out for abusive and toxic traits in your prospective partner while you are still in the talking stage.

Finally, having a couple of bad eggs out there doesn’t mean there are no more picture perfect partners. When you finally find (meet) someone who matches your energy, be willing to give it a try. With the above mentioned tips, you’ll have a better relationship and romantic life.


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