Research has identified the early warning signs which lead to the deterioration of an intimate relationship. Based on these signs, researchers have been able to predict with a very high degree of accuracy (about 90%) which relationships are likely to end within a few years. This information is crucial in accepting when your relationship is in serious need of more attention or help.
Dr. J. Gottman and colleagues at the University of Washington have found that there are four specific signs of deterioration of an intimate relationship. In order of increasing danger, they are listed below:
References: Gottman, J. M. (1993). A theory of marital dissolution and stability. Journal of Family Psychology, 7, 57-75; Gottman, J. (1999). The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work. Crown Books.
Dr. H. Markman and Dr. S. Stanley at the University of Colorado have also identified four warning signs of deterioration:
References: Markman, H.J., Floyd, F.J., Stanley, S.M., & Storaasli, R.D. (1988) Prevention of marital distress: A longitudinal investigation. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 56, 210-217; Markman, H., Stanley, S. and Blumberg, S. Fighting for Your Marriage: Positive Steps Preventing Divorce and Preserving a Lasting Love, 1994.
These research findings are very similar, despite completely different couples and research agendas. If you notice that your relationship is experiencing two or more of these signs, your relationship needs some extra help and attention. An ounce of prevention can save an incredible amount of emotional, financial and physical pain. Call us at (707) 544-9000 and let us show you how you can heal the resentments from the past and create a more loving, close, healthy relationship that will last a lifetime.