Relationship doubts can creep into your mind or your partner's for all kinds of reasons. Sometimes they're because of legitimate issues that the two of you truly do need to work through and other times you work yourself all up into a panic before realizing that it's baseless and you calm yourself back down again. While it can sometimes be easy to think that you're the only one that ever questions or doubts the stability of your relationship (or if you should stay), there are some surprising triggers that cause men to question staying in their relationship as well, so worry not, it's not just you. Your partner is going through the same kinds of things.
Perhaps the worst part about the things that trigger relationship doubts is that, sometimes, they come completely out of the blue. You didn't know that participating in that activity, having that conversation, or running into that person would trigger thoughts about maybe not staying in your relationship, but then, there it is. Luckily, relationship doubts don't automatically mean that the relationship is on its last leg, they just mean that there's something that you need to think about or work on. From fears and communication troubles to brain chemicals and more, relationship doubt triggers can come in all shapes and sizes.
1. They're Scared You'll Fight
While you might think that a fear of fighting wouldn't trigger them into thinking that the relationship might not be the right one for them, you'd be surprised how much relationship anxiety a fear of fighting can cause. After you fight initially, they can get worried that you'll fight again, as the Calm Clinic noted. Especially bad fights can also cause anxiety that something just as bad will happen again in the future. If they feel like they can't handle fighting with you, they might start questioning whether the relationship is a good one or not.
2. There Are Things You Don't Agree On
I can see everyone rolling their eyes as they read this because, of course, no one agrees with their partner on everything all the time. Sometimes, disagreements aren't a big deal. They either happen and you move on or they might not have ever really mattered that much in the first place. Other times, however, like when you disagree on matters that feel central to your identity or beliefs, it can cause some relationship doubts. Dr. Paul Hokemeyer, a licensed marriage and family therapist, told Headspace that, in order to work through something like this, you need to make sure that neither of you are putting the other down for their beliefs. Otherwise, it can shake the relationship to its core and you might have a hard (or even impossible) time recovering.
3. You're Hanging Out With A Seemingly Perfect Couple
As anyone who's ever been in a relationship can tell you, no relationship is perfect, no matter how much it may seem so from the outside looking in. Spending time with a seemingly perfect couple can set off alarm bells in their head, highlighting all the perceived flaws in your own relationship. Dr. Elle Boag, a senior lecturer in social psychology at Birmingham City University, told Refinery29 UK that spending time with another couple can actually assuage those doubts, but only if all of you, as friends, are able to be open about the fact that relationships, all relationships, take work.
4. You're Still Friends With An Ex
You might think that it's no big deal that you're still close friends with someone you dated, because, say, you were friends with them before you'd even started dating in the first place, but it might be causing your partner to question the relationship. Carey Yazeed, an author, life strategist, and speaker told Bustle that getting too chummy with your ex can, on occasion, lead to a breakup. In certain situations, of course, talking to your ex might be necessary or required, but being honest with your partner about those interactions can be just as important.
5. The Oxytocin Wore Off
Oxytocin kicks in at the beginning of a relationship, making everything the other person does seem sweet and adorable. Eventually, however, that wears off. Dr. Linda Carroll, a relationship therapist, told Headspace in the aforementioned post that when the oxytocin wears off, you start to see the same qualities that you thought were great at the beginning of your relationship in a new way. Finding someone's Type A qualities endearing at the beginning of a relationship and suffocating later on can encourage some of that doubt.
6. You're Too Nice
What's wrong with being nice, right? Well, nothing, exactly, but if you're too nice, you might be acting too cautiously, which may cause your partner to question the relationship. In a post on his personal website, Steve McCready, a therapist, wrote that being overly nice can put the onus of making decisions and having opinions solely on your partner, plus it can lead to boredom and distrust. If your partner can't be sure whether or not you're actually doing OK or just being "nice," that can cause some uncertainty in the relationship as well.
7. A Friend Or Family Member Suggested You Might Not Be Right For Them
People can doubt or question the relationships they're in for a lot of reasons. If a family member or close friend told them that they're not sure you're right together, that could quite easily cause your partner to question the relationship, as eHarmony experts told Brides. You might not want to believe that someone outside of the two of you has so much sway over your relationship, but it's one of the most common reasons that people breakup. It, like so many other things, can really make them think.
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