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Will My Relationship Last?

By Eric Dean JD, MBA, MA, MA, LPC, CADC

This is the million-dollar question to which I am going to respond with the unsatisfying answer: “It Depends.” Of course, there is no way to accurately predict the future, especially when it comes to relationships which are inherently messy and complicated. However, there are common reasons why relationships end. In this post, I will share four of them.

  1.       Overdependence on one partner for emotional well-being

When we depend on our partner to feel good, we are leaving our emotional well-being up to someone over which we have limited control. When we fail to accept full responsibility for our emotional well-being, we miss out on opportunities to hone skills to self-soothe and regulate our emotions without external intervention. Reassurance from our partner may help with the symptoms of our insecurities but does nothing to address the root causes. Ultimately, an unhealthy and unsustainable dynamic is created.

  1.       Lack of assertive communication

When one partner is unable to set healthy boundaries, the relationship becomes imbalanced. Boundaries may include asking for what we want or saying no to what we do not want.

For example, Jane would like to spend more quality time with her partner John. However, she is afraid to ask John for what she wants/needs because she feels like she would be bothering him. Instead, Jane suppresses her desire and may ultimately become resentful of John and unhappy in the relationship.

Another example would be if John is afraid to say “No” to Jane, when she says that she wants to move to another state for a job opportunity. John knows that this move would not be good for him, but he acquiesces anyway. John suppresses his feelings about the move and ultimately becomes resentful of Jane and dissatisfied in the relationship.

  1.       Lack of boundaries around appropriate disclosure to parties outside of the relationship

A situation in which one partner expresses frustration about their significant other disclosing intimate details about their relationship issues to a friend, is not uncommon. Without clear boundaries on what is okay to disclose about the relationship to others, and to whom disclosure is permitted, there are bound to be unpleasant surprises with privacy violations. It is essential that partners agree on what they are comfortable with others knowing about their relationship. Couples should make sure that these issues are talked about inside the relationship as well.

  1.       Insufficient emotional maturity

We all choose partners based on myriad factors: physical appearance, career stability, financial security, intelligence, and humor, just to name some. However, emotional maturity is infrequently considered. Emotional maturity is our ability to manage and regulate our emotions. When one partner is emotionally immature, it will be difficult to build a strong connection with them, no matter how mature they may be in other areas of life. Unfortunately, many people do not learn this until well into the relationship. For example, just because their partner has high career maturity, does not mean that they also have high emotional maturity. When choosing a partner, make emotional maturity a consideration from the beginning.

Wrapping Up

Here I have presented 4 reasons why relationships may not last:

  1.       Overdependence on a partner for emotional health;
  2.       Lack of assertive communication;
  3.       Lack of boundaries around appropriate outside disclosure; and
  4.       Insufficient emotional maturity.

Being aware of these signs can help you avoid potentially unhealthy relationships or identify early on when your relationship may not be sustainable.

A Symmetry therapist will help you assess your current relationships to identify areas of improvement. 

So, let’s get started – call Symmetry Counseling today at 312-578-9990 to connect with a counselor in Chicago.


Wignall, N. (2021). “10 Psychological Reasons Your Relationships Never Tend to Last.” Personal Growth.  

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