Nov 262013

Are you going through the normal ups and downs of a long-term relationship, or is it over? These signs a marriage is over will help you see your relationship more clearly.

Feeling like you’ve hit rock bottom in your marriage isn’t necessarily the worst thing to happen in your relationship. Sometimes rock bottom is where you need to be, so you can rebuild your marriage. Rock bottom might help you see your relationship clearly – such as identifying when guilt is keeping you in a marriage you wish was over.

signs marriage is over If you have no idea if your marriage really is over, read Too Good to Leave, Too Bad to Stay: A Step-by-Step Guide to Help You Decide Whether to Stay In or Get Out of Your Relationship by Mira Kirshenbaum. It’s an excellent resource that will change the way you see your spouse. Getting an objective perspective without the pain of marriage counselling can help you move forward. And, remember that sometimes you need to go through a bad stage of marriage before you can rebuild a happy, healthy relationship. “In my work doing marriage coaching, I have noticed that very often the turning point in a marriage is when a couple hits rock bottom,” says Mort Fertel. “It’s not until they’ve been through the worst that things start to get better.”

7 Signs Your Marriage is Over

Remember marriage coach Mort Fertel’s words: just because you’re struggling with problems in your relationship, doesn’t mean your marriage is headed for divorce court! The following issues may represent the end of one stage of your marriage….and may herald the beginning of a new, healthier chapter of life. In fact, Mort says cheating husbands are more likely to build stronger marriages.

Your partner can’t see the reality of your marriage. If your spouse doesn’t understand how his actions are affecting you – and even worse, refuses to compromise – then your marriage will be difficult to rebuild. To rise from rock bottom, both partners have to see how their actions or inactions are affecting the relationship – and both partners have to be willing to work on it. If your spouse refuses to accept responsibility, then you have to decide if you want to stay in your marriage the way it is…or end it.

Your spouse sees how thing are, but doesn’t care. You can communicate until you’re blue in the face, but if your partner doesn’t care how you feel or whether the relationship is healthy, then perhaps it’s a sign your marriage is over. Marriage coach Mort Fertel says, “Ironically, communication techniques sometimes give people clarity that they don’t care what their spouse thinks or feels. They “got it,” but “it” doesn’t matter to them anymore.” Communication is secondary to caring.

You don’t connect with your spouse. When you first got married, you probably felt understood, heard, and connected with your partner. Time passes, and the stress of daily life and kids and jobs and money and house all take a toll…and you find that you’re not connecting anymore. This isn’t necessarily a sign your marriage is over – it just means you need to make the time and effort to reconnect.

Relationship Help

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You have different visions of the future of your marriage. He wants a four million dollar home on oceanfront property; you want to live in a cottage in the country. He wants six children; you’d rather be childfree. He wants his mom and aunt to live with you in his four million dollar home; you can barely tolerate Christmas dinner together. To keep your marriage together, you need to agree on your vision as a couple or family – and put each other first (and your financial goals, parents, or careers second).

Sometimes you don’t need to read signs your marriage is over, because you know divorce is the best option. If you aren’t financially independent or free to walk away, read How to Get Money to Leave Your Husband.

You’re not physically intimate (but this isn’t always a sign your marriage is over). This may not be a sure way to tell if your marriage is over — it depends on your physical and mental health — but if you have no love life to speak of, then you probably aren’t connecting on an intimate emotional and physical level. The less you connect, the less healthy your relationship is…and the more likely your spouse is ending the relationship.

You fight the “wrong” way in your marriage. If you can’t focus on the topic of your argument, opting instead to bring up past mistakes or reopen old wounds, then your marriage may be leaning towards “over.” The more past conflicts come into current arguments, the less healthy your marriage is. This may not be a certain sign your marriage is over, because it’s actually fairly easily remedied if both spouses are willing.

signs marriage is over

“7 Signs Your Marriage is Over” image by Laurie

You partner cheats and wants to end the marriage. Many couples survive marital infidelity, and even have a stronger bond because of the cheating. Other couples split up right away, while other marriage limp along for years or decades…and the cheating partner remains unfaithful. Cheating in and of itself isn’t necessarily a way to tell if your marriage is over…it’s how the partners act after the infidelity that determines if they’ll stay together.

I welcome your thoughts on these signs your marriage is over. I can’t give you advice – but below I offer a direct link to marriage coach Mort Fertel. He gives relationship advice, and shares his perspective on the signs of a marriage ending.

If you and your husband are willing to work on your marriage, read How to Go on a Marriage Retreat Without Leaving Home.


Article Name
7 Signs Your Marriage is Over
These signs your marriage is over will help you figure out if you're going through the normal phases of a long-term relationship, or if it's time to call it quits.
laurie pawlik kienlenI'm Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen - bookworm, travel bug, flute player, writer, blogger, warrior princess. :-) My husband and I live in Vancouver, Canada with our cat and dogs.

Are you happy? My Grade 10 Social Studies teacher always asked me that. And I am happy, despite a hard childhood (schizophrenic mom, no dad, foster homes), infertility, an eating disorder, and a chronic illness. The source of my peace and joy is God; I'm a Christian. Where do you find peace?

I welcome your big and little comments below, about big or little things. I can't give you advice, but writing can give you clarity and insight.

In peace and passion...Laurie

  10 Responses to “7 Signs Your Marriage is Over”

  1. Dear Brooke,

    My insight is that your husband has serious anger issues, and that he is an abusive man who might hurt you worse than he already has. You don’t make him angry – it isn’t your fault that he acts the way he does! He is blaming you, and that is classic abusive behavior.

    I’m 100% sure you know that abusive is a sign your marriage is over – or at least that your husband doesn’t respect or love you. My advice is that you leave now, before things get worse.


  2. Dear Lynne,

    I’m sorry to hear you lost your daughter. Something like that, you never get over. My prayer is that you and your husband are able to work through your grief over your loss, even if you can’t repair your marriage. I pray for healing and strength, that you and he can face whatever life brings.

    May you accept your marriage for what it is, and see reality for what is. Whether you and your husband work through your marriage problems or decide that your marriage is over, I pray that you move forward into the next stage of your life, and that you find happiness and peace.


  3. I have been married only 2 weeks, and I already believe my marriage is over.
    He threatened to kill me on our honeymoon by waving a steak knife in my face in a crowded restaurant & 2 days later grabbed me by throat & told me he will kill me not once or twice but 4 times.
    He tells me I make him angry.

    Your insight please

  4. I have been married for 24 years . We have suffered a child killed. But the marriage has gone down since then. Its been 11 years since our daughter was killed. Every year gets worse and worse. He no longer will communicate to me. He doesn’t tell me were he is, were he’s been, when he’s coming home (he’s cheating I believe). We sleep in same bed but no sex. Hes spending money constantly. But won’t let me have any. I’m disabled. He says its HIS MONEY. I was hospitalized and he never even came to see me. He does text me back that he does love me but only if I initiate the text. I’m so lonely. He will not go to counciling. He wont even look at me. The few times he does talk to me its b to bitch at me. I can face its over!!!

  5. Dear Lillian,

    My prayer for you is that you’re able to accept that your marriage has changed. For some reason, your husband has decided he needs more from marriage, or he wants a different type of marriage. Maybe he doesn’t even know why the marriage is over – maybe he’s just as confused as you are. Or, maybe he wasn’t the man you thought he was. Maybe he was pretending, or he was changing and either couldn’t or wouldn’t tell you that he needed something different.

    Your marriage – as you knew it – is over. I don’t know if you’ll get back together with your husband, or if you’ll be able to move forward in peace. But, I pray that you find the courage, strength, and freedom you need to let the future unfold as it is destined to. May you accept what lies ahead, and may you find ways to be more peaceful and happy than you thought possible.


  6. Aside from the physical evidence of his dishonesty at the very least, I feel in every part of me him getting father and father away. I’m not ready for this to end. , We have not been building up to it, I am still in great shape I’m 5’2 weigh 115 and my measurements are 36 27 38… which will improve once my body is finished going back to its former condition. Or sex life had always been fantastic,. We were very affectionate a few weeks ago, We have always confided in each other, and we share the same dreams and goals. So what happened? Did some strange woman really just come along and steal my husband from me and our children? I keep waiting to wake up and be so relieved that it was just a horrible nightmare. But I don’t think I will and now it seems the best case for me is if he begs my forgiveness and goes back to being my husband.He even gripes at the kids when he is home. Our 3 yr old won’t hug him and treats him like a guest who had over stayed his welcome. But my perfect husband and daddy hread disappeared without a trace. Please help

  7. Hi,
    February 20th made 7 years that my husband and I have been married. We have 4 boys together, all were conceived after we were married. When we got married we had just met each other 6 months prior and had been a couple for less than 2 months. We have had a lot of financial hardship, my mother died in a very sudden and tragic way, his ex has kept him from seeing his daughter h that he had before we met(I have never met her) and when he would try to make contact they would go as far as pressing false charges on him and having him put in jail, all for of our subs have severe hemophilia, he stopped talking to his family bc of the way they treated me like I was a second class citizen bc of the party of the country I was born and raised in which is the new Orleans area, and so on. As a couple we have always had each other’s back and have not met a problem we weren’t able to conquer. Both of us have always said proudly that we were soul mattress and we truly felt that way. Recently he went thru a period of unemployment and started showing signs of depression. I started finding in his emails where he wasn’t only getting promotional emails from dating sites but he had user ids and profiles set up. I am very sensitive about him looking at porn without me and her knows this I asked him at the beginning of our relationship if that was something he had to have and he promised me it wasn’t, but this was actual communication with real local women.I don’t believe he ever met up with any of them and he denied it being him. He actually said his brother may have done it as a joke.well a year goes by and things are fantastic he was working again, I got pregnant with our 4th son. Fast forward to present, he just got a new job about 3 hours from home. For the first 2 weeks the entire family went to stay with him at a motel. After the first week he began taking longer than necessary to go anywhere and bring very critical of everything I did.’ After each interaction we would have he would walk away talking under his breath but I only understiid his tone, which was bad enough. We had a huge fight that was completely unprovoked but he swore that I had said things I didn’t and he even told me he “couldn’t do this anymore” but I never found out what he was talking about bc our relationship was always fantastic. We were the couple that gave others hope and also the couple that caused also caused a lot of jealousy, but we were never passed by that. He brought me and the kids back home on the 18th of July and returned on the 20th very early in the am. He stayed in a hotel for the next week, but each night I wouldn’t be able to contact him after 8 pm. He would call me the next morning and say he had fallen asleep. Well the last week he has been staying home and commuting bu the first night back home after that well without us he was not happy and very short tempered and critical of me and the kids. About a week ago I was cleaning his memory on his android phone and stumbled onto his search history ask nd found that on June 8th he has looked up female escorts in New Orleans and then on July 12th and 18th he had gone to the same site , (backpage), and looked them up in the area he is working then looked for women seeking men.He also had downloaded an app called meet up. He spent his entire $1600 check on things he couldn’t remember but no money came home and no builds were paid.. I looked up his location history and found that each night he was at the hotel and many of the days that we were with him and he took very long trips to the grocery store that he had been at the same house in what looked to be a large shop. When I asked him about it he instantly started crying and saying that all I do is advise him and I want him to be doing these things so I could leave them he began accusing me of cheating. I am not even attracted to other men, seriously, I don’t even see them when they are in my face. He knows this. Well after the reaction he had I decided not to say anything about the other things and do some more pi work so he wouldn’t be able to deny it. I did let him know that unless he chooses To end things I wasn’t going to let his pour judgement and whatever desires he may have take everything from me and hurt our children as well.If he was being dishonest with me that he could tell me the truth and if he had a problem I would help him, Just please stop. Each day he gets home later and later and so I look in his search history and phone records and see that he is deleting texts and phone calls and spends up to 2 hrs each da at the same house. This morning when he was leaving he gave me the coldest hug ever, and I broke down.I began crying uncontrollably and instead of hugging me for real nd being concerned he instantly starting accusing me and saying that all I ever do is stall him and I should go ahead and leave that it’s obvious I want to. I don’t know what to do. Aside crib the physical

  8. Dear Dorean,

    Thank you for being here, and for sharing what you’re going through. You sound very unhappy with your marriage and life. It also sounds like you feel very alone, lonely, and not connected with your husband.

    You can’t change him. The only person you can change is yourself. So, you need to decide if you want to continue living this way for the next 20 or 40 years, or if you want to make some changes in your life. You can make changes in your life and still stay married — you can create a whole life outside your marriage! Or, you can make changes in your life and leave your husband.

    Whatever you decide to do, I encourage you NOT to make decisions out of fear or insecurity. Don’t stay in an unhappy marriage because you’re scared you can’t support yourself financially. Don’t let your fears and your past destroy your future.

    You have the power to control your life. You are stronger than you think, smarter than you realize, and more capable than you believe. You can dig deep into yourself and find the resources you need to make beautiful changes in your life.

    Where do you want to be in a year from now? Focus on things you can change — your surroundings, your activities, your daily habits — not on things you can’t (ie, your husband).


  9. hi sorry i didnt know if my comment through but i do appricate you looking at the comment for me i just need some insight thank you Dorean

  10. my husband and i have been married for 20 years all together for 25 , We have three kids 22, 2018 . I know i love him but he showns no consideration towards my feeling or for what i do on a regular base at all , he dont help around the house.I do’nt work he told me earlier around when our kids were in school to be at home for them which i did. I go on family vactions by myself snice they were small and i still do. We went to Myrtle beach and he stayed in the room the whole time no kids , we didnt even go to beach. I’m home 24 hours a day i clean cook i dont mind i would just like for him to take me out once on a Saturday. I spent our 20 Annversary in the house doing nothing he, knew that day was special. He once told me to tell him when i thought it wasnt working out or i wanted something to change but when i do im crazy. I dont know if i want to go on being sad unhappy and so unappreciated by the person i care for . Please give me your insight

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