First, you and your partner are so smitten that you doubt the honeymoon period will ever end, and before you know it, you find yourselves sitting in front of a couples' therapist. Where did it go wrong? The longer you stay with someone, the more assumptions you make: "Well, I'm sure they know how much I love them by now" and "They should know how I feel or what I think at this point." Though that's true to some degree, he or she is not psychic (unless they are) and communication is still very much vital to a relationship at any stage. When we stop sharing our concerns, needs, and feelings with our partners, that's when things start to fall off.
"I think the main one is that we forget that we're teammates," said relationship coach Tara Caffelle when asked what the most common mistake she sees couples make. "I'll talk to one member of a couple, and we'll come up with some brilliant discovery, and then they'll say, 'Do you think I should tell my partner about this?' and that's when I wanna smack them on the head and go, 'Well, of course you do!' Like why wouldn't you tell your partner this? This is a piece of you."
Your partner is called a partner for a reason.
You have to remember those early days when you used to tell each other everything. Once distance starts to form between you two, it's easy for it to go unnoticed until it really becomes an issue, and it's also difficult to close once you reach a certain point.
"I think somehow it becomes that we're adversaries in our minds, and we stop thinking about sharing the vulnerable pieces of ourselves or being a team and calling your person," Tara said.
An example Tara used is being too afraid to tell your partner that you've gotten yourself into credit card debt. You need help but you feel guilty and don't want to be judged, so you continue to keep this secret to yourself, only making the problem worse.
"We make all these assumptions, we turn away from our partner and we don't tell them about it, and then we live in these silos of suffering," Tara said.
But if we approached him or her and let them first know how difficult it is to talk to them about it because you're worried about their reaction, they will probably return with compassion and even help you. They will most likely be mad, and rightfully so, since you kept this from them and your financial irresponsibility affects more than yourself.
"And guess what? They probably still love you!" Tara said. "That's the main thing: we forget that we are a team, and it sets us all on weird tracks."