Torn Between Heart and Health: Struggling in a Relationship with Unhealthy Habits

Deal with the issues that bad habits are causing in relationships. Find out what works for encouraging growth and understanding.

A common problem in relationships is bad habits and how they can lead to general disagreements, walking on eggshells, and potentially a breakup.

From my experience, it can be as little as not making the bed that could set you off in a whole argument, and by the end, you don’t even remember why you started arguing.

These little bad habits can build up over time and put a huge amount of strain on your partner and in some cases, you don’t even realise there was an issue with how you live your life in the first place.

So when you break all this down, if you are struggling in your relationship due to your own or your partner’s unhealthy habits, there are ways you can communicate and get around the issue, or maybe this is the space where you really need to call it quits.

There is only so much compromise that you should let slide; you shouldn’t have to change or let go of all your boundaries for a relationship.

Through growing up and having a few boyfriends, I found that I lost myself a lot of the time and even started bad habits because I was in a relationship, and that should never be the case.

Once you realise that sticking to your guns is the best solution for both yourself and your partner when it comes to letting go of unnecessary bad habits, the better.

So let’s dive into some of the common and not-so-common bad habits that you and your partner could have and how to navigate through them.

common problem in relationships

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Smoking, Vaping and Everything In Between

Smoking seems to die out with younger generations adopting more of the vaping scene; even individuals who hate to smoke are taking up these vaping and nicotine habits. When it comes to smoking, this can be a huge problem for some people, especially those who are against smoking.

People can be against this habit for a multitude of reasons, such as smell, health reasons, or financial instability. The question does lie: did you or your partner start smoking before or during the relationship?

If before then it seems pretty out of pocket setting in demands to change yourself when they knew you smoked when they met, therefore, let your partner know this was you at the beginning, and if smoking is a habit you are not planning on quitting, then a serious discussion is needed.

If, alternatively, your partner has started smoking or vaping, for that matter, during the middle of your relationship and it’s something you didn’t sign up for, then prepare yourself for a difficult conversation.

Start to truly think about why you don’t want this around you, whether it’s family history, smell, or just doesn’t weigh up with your morals.

Then gently explain this, and maybe you’ll be able to find a common ground or solution, such as taking up velo or nicopods instead or only smoking during social drinks.

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Controlling Behavior: Time To Release The Shackles

A common factor with controlling behaviour is insecurities and it could be as little as telling you not to wear a top for some reason. While there is a difference between controlling and trying to protect you,. You will be able to see and feel the difference when it happens but this is something you should never settle for.

Without getting too religious! God gave us free will so letting one person dictate what you can and cannot do is not God’s will and as someone who isn’t even religious, this is something I definitely resonate with. Who is that one person to say what goes?

They might do things such as try and control your finances, friendships, and clothing choices, which could result in feelings of identity crises, isolation and just pure confusion. If this is starting to happen in your relationship, I suggest you call it out and don’t let your feelings be pushed down.

You are valid and if it gets bad, you could be in a relationship with a narcissistic person. I would suggest you attend therapy or seek professional help for your partner and get down to the root of the issue.

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Gambling on the relationship?

If you are with someone who likes to have a “cheeky gamble” here and there and there has been an issue or you see it heading that way,. You could find out how serious the problem is. You could suggest going on holiday and so forth and see where their reaction goes.

Are they spending money on you? Are they recklessly spending money on things? Are they always on their phone? Do they take it to the toilet? But if you pride yourself on being transparent, then just be blunt and ask them to go on their phone, or just bring up the topic and see how it goes.

Gambling is a problem that can be fixed. You could suggest helping them through the steps in therapy and finding healthier alternatives for them to enjoy, like sports or at-home activities. You could even reach out to support groups on their behalf.

Honesty is always the best policy and recognising a problem is the first step. Be gentle with your partner going through this but I personally would not stand for constant relapsing or those who refuse to accept the help, as it will be to your own detriment.

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Final Thoughts

Navigating through these unhealthy habits can have its highs and lows but at the same time, it could have you both coming out strong on the other side, whether you work through it together or leave.

At the end of the day, everyone has their own boundaries and I personally believe that you should stick with them and you could be extremely successful in the long run.

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