As the story goes, if you put a live frog in boiling water, it will jump out. But if you put a frog in lukewarm water and heat it up slowly, it will not perceive the danger until it’s cooked to death.
A majority of loveless marriages are similar to a boiling frog. The relationship degrades gradually, and the couple does not notice it until it’s too late.
Here are signs that your marriage is already in hot water.
1. You stop saying “I love you” to each other
One of the most apparent loveless relationship signs is the lack of affection when you talk to each other.
Do you still remember when your relationship was new and you couldn’t stop saying sweet nothings to each other?
The moment it stops completely is a red flag.
2. Every little thing turns into a huge fight
If the first sign is a signal of an unhappy marriage, this sign means that your relationship is in a critical boiling point.
If little things about your spouse irritate you to the point of madness, it’s time to step back and reassess your relationship.
3. You turn to others for comfort
The moment your spouse becomes a source of animosity, some people turn to something, such as alcohol, video games, or someone else for support, if this happening to you then your marriage is in jeopardy.
A marriage without love is troublesome, but the moment partners start to love someone/something else, then it’s a sign that the marriage is at its last leg.
4. You find staying at home stressful
A person should view their own home as a refuge.
It doesn’t matter if the person lives alone or with a big family. The ideal home life is a place where one rejuvenates and gets away from worldly problems.
The moment your home, and in particular, your spouse, becomes a source of stress, then your relationship is not working out.
The moment you find yourself making excuses to avoid going home, including really working overtime, it’s a sign of a loveless marriage.
5. You avoid sex
A sexless marriage is already a red flag in itself, but if you or your partner is purposely avoiding it, then that’s not just a threat to your relationship, but it could also lead to depression.
It’s a typical pattern for long-term couples to tone down sexual activities as they get older, but avoiding sex is a whole different issue altogether.
6. You regret marrying the person
One clear sign of being stuck in a loveless marriage is when you blame your partner for not achieving all the things you could have done if you hadn’t married them.
Regretting your decision to marry your current spouse shows you subconsciously believe you made the wrong choice.
You and your spouse fight a lot, and when you do, it never ends with a constructive conversation.
It always starts with shouting, finger-pointing, name-calling, and eventually a list of all the wrong things each partner did since time immemorial.
It then ends with one partner walking out in anger or violence.
If your relationship has gone from unicorns and rainbows to hellfire and brimstone, then you’re not only in a loveless marriage, you’re in a dangerous one.
Fixing a loveless marriage and getting back on track
If your relationship is exhibiting more than a few loveless marriage signs, it’s time to think about moving forward with your marriage or divorce.
Keep your nose clean and don’t give your spouse ammunition in case the divorce arbitration becomes messy. Some examples are getting caught cheating, neglecting your children, or irresponsible spending.
Do your research about divorce and what to expect, also run a calculation on finances to see if you can afford being separated from your partner. This is especially true if you are not the breadwinner of the family.
If you are looking to reconcile, then you may need the help of a marriage counselor to restart constructive communication.
If you are still willing to fix your relationship, don’t sabotage it by getting into more fights.
A loveless marriage isn’t really loveless
Unless it’s a modern arranged marriage for money or power, most loveless marriages are just a couple having a rough patch.
The romance is gone, and responsibilities just got in the way. Rekindling your relationship takes a lot of work, that’s why you have to be determined about doing it yourself.
Just like how it took time to turn your dream marital life into the cesspool it is now, it will also take time to put it back together.
Over time, you will know if your partner is also willing to fix your marriage.
Agreeing to go to a marriage counselor is a good sign. One or both of you may have committed infidelity as an escape. Discuss it privately with your therapist.
Laying your cards on the table can help regain trust, or it can damage it beyond repair.
Signs of a loveless marriage are symptoms, not a disease
All those signs are just manifestations of deeper problem/s in your relationship. But one thing is for sure, you and your spouse need to be partners again.
In love, sex, and marriage. Only then can you resolve problems as a couple, and the symptoms of the disease will go away.
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.
Sylvia Smith loves to share insights on how couples can revitalize their love lives in and out of the bedroom. As a writer at Marriage.com, she is a big believer in living consciously and encourages couples to adopt this principle in their lives too. Sylvia believes that every couple can transform their relationship into a happier, healthier one by taking purposeful and wholehearted action.