How strong is your relationship these days? This question may not be easy to answer, especially if you’re past the initial infatuation stage of your courtship. Sure, some days, you might feel like no one in the world loves or understands you more; but others, you want to know why you’re the only one who remembers to walk the dog, and for goodness sake, chew with your mouth closed! To get an honest assessment of the health of your partnership, though, you don’t have to look far. In fact, just glance in the mirror the next time you and your partner are in the same room, and observe your body language. Therapists say they can tell whether a relationship is hitting the skids just by looking at the way the couple is sitting.
For example, crossing arms and legs is not a good sign, according to Carole Lieberman, a couples therapist in Beverly Hills, California and author of Bad Boys: Why We Love Them, How to Live With Them, When to Leave Them. She added that if one partner sits with his or her back to the spouse, the two former lovebirds have closed themselves off from each other, both physically and emotionally — even if their sex life is fine.
Not touching is a really bad sign, experts say
The two of you might be long past the days of calling each other “Schmoopie,” Seinfeld style. But do you peck on the cheek, tousle each other’s hair, touch hands when you’re standing beside each other in the kitchen? If not, that could be bad news. “Touch is the building block of connection and intimacy in romantic relationships,” couples therapist Melissa Cohen told Prevention. She explained that a healthy relationship is not necessarily about “how often your partner touches you, but how often he or she touches you in response to your touch.”
Lack of eye contact also is a dead giveaway that your relationship is dead on the water. “Eye contact takes some level of intimacy,” body language expert Traci Brown told HuffPost. She added that it’s not just whether you hold each other’s gaze, but whether you even look at each other at all, that speaks to the health of your relationship. “People look at things they like! If it diminishes, you know you’ve got trouble.” So if you find yourself staring at a stain on the wall instead of your partner’s face…well, it might be time to face the music about whether you two are right for each other.
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