You are with the love of your life, some even say soulmate, and you finish eachothers sentences, but suddenly it feels as though a dark cloud has descended upon everything you have spent so much time building on – your future. Tiny little things begin to turn into huge issues, and it feels as though everything is wrong and nothing is ever good enough. Has the love died, or maybe it is something a lot simpler…. Stress.

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How stress causes relationship problems  

That little word we all know so well – stress. Stress, whether from inside or outside your relationship, is likely to affect the way you think, feel and behave. This will creep into your daily life and will start to make an impact on your partner and your relationship – creating a vicious circle.

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Relationship stress can be caused by many factors, and may eventually lead to the following:

-Never-ending criticism; Feeling unheard; Disagreements over chores; Sexual problems; Work-related problems; Financial difficulties; Arguments etc

It can also come about as a result of a crisis, such as an affair, sudden illness, the death of a loved one or other family problems.

Avoiding issues can provide temporary relief, but this may lead in the long-term to a buildup of stress, and reduced resilience when you’re confronted with stressful situations.

If you blame your partner, other people or the situation, you can get trapped in feelings of helplessness and hopelessness. This is unhealthy as you end up wasting precious energy on things you have no control over, instead of focusing on the things you do.

Is your partner, or are you , able to help?

Ideally you’d offer each other emotional and practical support. If your partner appears unable to help and/or support you, try not to judge them. If this is out of character for them, then it may be that your partner’s own well-being is not so good at the moment. When you are feeling stressed it can feel as though everybody, including your partner, is out to make life difficult for you!

When you get to the point where you just don’t want to go home at the end of a working day, or you dread your partner coming through the door, your relationship just won’t be satisfying any more.

If there are problems in your relationship or marriage, now is the time to sort them out. Continuing to do what you’ve always done is not going to change anything. I’m afraid wishful thinking will only lead to further relationship stress.

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At Lifeline South Africa , we are here to help you navigate through the troubled waters of everyday life, and if you feel as though you no longer have the coping skills, or you just need some counselling, please call us on our 24 hour helpline:

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