Healthy relationships don't just happen, they require communication, emotional intelligence and understanding. Click here to read advice from our in-house psychologist Salama Marine on how to build a great relationship.
Even the happiest couples have relationship problems now and then. But not everyone experiences them in the same way. Those in healthy relationships know that upsets don’t have to portent the end of things and that solving these issues together can in fact make love stronger – so what’s their secret?
According to EliteSingles psychologist Salama Marine,1 the trick is to approach disagreements with intelligence and compassion. Here, she identifies three of the most common relationship problems – and explains what you need to do to fix them.
The problem: Money
There are a lot of ways to argue about money. From mismatched incomes to differing views on spending, money can be a very touchy subject for many people. And that means that it is at the root of many relationship problems.
The solution: Honesty
Salama believes that the reason why this relationship problem is so common is that ‘’individuals often restrain from being honest with their partner through fear of causing upset’’ – something that especially rings true when it comes to a sensitive area like money. However, despite the good intentions, fibbing about money can actually lead to further issues. A better approach is to simply be upfront from the start: let your partner know when or if you can’t afford something rather than overextend yourself or, if money is not an issue, appreciate that the same might not be true for your partner and plan your dates accordingly.
Further advice: want more tips on combining love and money? Find them here
The problem. Sex
Another common relationship problem involves mismatched libidos. It’s common knowledge that sex drives can ebb and flow over the course of a relationship – but knowing this intellectually doesn’t make it any easier to process emotionally. Too often, sex related issues can leave one or both partners feeling rejected, frustrated or guilty.
The solution: Communication
Much like with money woes, keeping schtum about sex related worries helps precisely no-one. It’s vital to keep the lines of communication open when it comes to sex: let your partner know about your needs but also be prepared to take theirs on board. Salama notes getting to a place of mutual satisfaction can take time – so patience is an important tool here, as is approaching any discussions from a place of openness and intimacy. Above all, make sure to remind your partner how much you love them regardless of what is happening in the bedroom.
Further advice: we found expert tips on how to have healthy sex life
The problem: Trust
When you have trust in your partnership, you can take on anything. When you don’t, it can become one of the biggest relationship problems. Mistrust can eat away at the strongest connections, causing no end of misery in its wake. If you have a lack of trust then, you must address the issue before it gets out of hand.
The solution: Objectivity
It would be unrealistic to expect someone to be completely confident and trusting every minute of every day. After all, we all have moments when insecurities can get the best of us, especially if we have been treated poorly in the past. However, it’s very important to examine these feelings objectively when they do occur. As Salama says, ‘’take a step back and analyse the situation objectively. Ask yourself whether you’re viewing your relationship problems based on facts or whether other emotions are influencing your perception. Don’t let a previous bad relationship ruin a current one.’’
Further advice: need more ideas on how to build trust in a relationship? Learn four great ones here
All couples have to take the rough with the smooth, but if you know how to solve common relationship problems you may find your lovelife is smoother than most. By approaching any issues with honesty, good communication skills and objectivity, you’ll be ready to solve them together rather than apart. As the old saying goes, it’s you and me vs. the problem, NOT you vs. me.
Ready to meet someone who will be by your side for the good and the bad? Join EliteSingles today and get ready to meet your matches.
EliteSingles Editorial September 2015
If you have any questions (or any tips) about solving relationship problems, write to us in a comment below or email us at [email protected]
1Salama Marine is a registered psychologist who trained at the Paris College of Psychological Practitioners. All quotes are from an exclusive EliteSingles interview, August 2015.