5 Ways to Mess Up a Relationship (2020)

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5 Ways to Mess up A Relationship - Frustrated Couple
You don’t want to mess up a relationship like this.

2020 is YOUR year remember that. The vision is clear, and you are actively manifesting everything you want.

Okay, enough with the self-help and attraction stuff, let’s get to the JUICY details that will highlight 5 ways to mess up a relationship.

In the world today, people are bombarded by digital technology. We are subject to the openness and availability of everything. Technology has made things so accessible that you can get to most things with just a touch of a button.

A lot of relationships suffer because of the easy access to things which could be a detriment to your relationship. Let’s look at 5 ways to mess up a relationship in 2020.

1. Insecurity

Starting off this list is something we all have to deal with at one time or another in our lives and especially in a relationship. The feeling of insecurity can manifest itself when not feeling good enough or feeling threatened.

Insecurity is typically an imaginary response to something that you feel is wrong or different with your partner. There are many triggers for insecurities, and while we believe that our partners are the ones who trigger it, it really comes from inside.

Insecurities have the ability to destroy how your mate sees you and can lead to a variety of actions that can alter your partner’s perception of you. Some of the by-products of being insecure include:

  • Jealousy
  • The need for approval
  • Always accusing your partner
  • Trust issues
  • Poor boundaries and more.

According to Psychology Today, there are four things that you can do to help improve your personal security:

A. Paying attention to your value

The most important part about getting your value in check is that EVERYONE has something to offer in a relationship. Although insecurity robs you of this understanding (your personal value), you can start to take stock in what you do well that can compliment your partner.

Since, similar traits can be problematic, having values, skillets, or belief systems that contrast, can help add to your relationship. For this to work, you have to pay attention to what your strong points are.

B. Self Esteem checks

According to research, self-esteem is a trait that is often correlated with higher insecurities. In other words, lower self-esteem can lead to more insecure behaviors.

Needing to depend on someone else to make you feel good is a way that can diminish your personal power. If you are constantly waiting on someone’s approval, or to compliment you, then what happens if they never do it?

More than likely, you will experience a negative emotion when you do not receive the reaction you are looking for.

It is always better to build inside and work your way out, so you don’t make the need to “feel good,” another person’s responsibility.

To put things in perspective, just imagine when you see someone you like or what your ideal person is, and then add low self-esteem to the mix. Are they still as attractive as they were in the beginning? Probably not.

C. Being independent in your relationships

In a relationship, two people come together as one. The fact still remains there are two people in the relationship. This means each person has their own experiences, wants, likes, desires, hobbies, etc.

Having a healthy relationship requires two healthy people. Autonomy is a key element in establishing appropriate boundaries.

Being able to have your own life helps to give space to your partner, and still to be true to yourself.

Most people do not understand the importance of maintaining an autonomous relationship. Not only should you allow your partner to be themselves, but you should encourage it.

Maintaining independence helps inspire each person to take charge of their own life. People spend a lot of time smothering their partner and this can potentially become new ways to mess up a relationship later down the line.

D. Trusting YOU

The last advice to dealing with insecurities has to deal with trusting yourself. This is very important because you are the only person you can depend on to get you through things.

When you are in a relationship it is easy to become lost in your lover. You may feel incomplete without them, or if you break up with them, your world is shattered.

The truth is, even after you lose your “other half,” you still have the ability to pick up the pieces and become whole again. You can do it.

2. Trust Issues

Having trust issues is no way to properly enjoy a healthy relationship. When you are feeling any type of stimuli that may cause you to question your trust, the energy does not allow you to be able you be safe and secure. Lack of trust destroys any possibility to build a foundation that is healthy. Trust issues can lead to:

  • jealousy
  • anger
  • codependency
  • emotional roller coasters
  • possessiveness
  • increased arguments
  • increased miscommunication

Being involved with someone that you cannot depend on, predict, or get accustomed to, is always affected by your ability to trust. Having false or misplaced expectations of a person can also have a negative effect on a relationship.

Trust issues typically originate from childhood, when a child is attempting to establish trust in their parents. If this does not happen, a person may never learn to fully be able to trust someone else.

Lack of trust can also ruin a relationship by causing abuse, neglect, or false promises. Continuous abuses can make a person not want to open up or become vulnerable to their mate.

Imagine wanting to get close to someone and you are successful, but, the person begins to lie to you. You may feel insecure or develop a fear of abandonment. You may never be able to relax around that person because you no longer know what to believe.

Understanding how important trust is, as it relates to a successful relationship, can be a determining factor in building a lasting foundation.

3. Communication Issues

A very important aspect of a relationship is communication. The way we communicate plays a major role in the ability to trust, be intimate, and understand others in a relationship.

In the Information Age, digital communication rules but can cause a lot of miscommunication. Having communication issues can make a person feel very insecure, not able to express themselves, or stuck with no resolution.

Reconciliation is not possible without both parties being heard. When an issue becomes irreconcilable, no one can properly voice their perspectives, nor can there be a safe space to find an answer.

Other communication issues arise when people are engaging in toxic communication. This style of communication can include any type of speech that one may find offensive or derogatory.

Without communications, we are not able to hear or be heard (yes, listening is a part of communication).

A study conducted by Dr. John Gottman in over twenty years of research found that the most significant indicator of divorce is when one or both parties display contempt.

As the opposite of respect, having contempt for your partner does not create a healthy balance. Some examples of how contempt can manifest in poor communications are:

  • Sarcasm
  • Judgments
  • Criticism

Poor communication hurts. Not only in the sense of how it feels to a person but the damage it causes overall.

Cell phone texting ad

4. Expectations

In some way shape or form, we have expectations of our partners. We want them to fulfill our needs, be a source of support, and, help us get through tough times. This seems like a reasonable expectation, right? Wrong.

Even the smallest of expectations can cause a problem if they are not upheld and carried out by our significant other. The problem here is that we have all come from different backgrounds and bring different perspectives of what we think a relationship should be before we enter one.

There was research conducted to analyze some people’s expectations which resulted in these 4 aspects:

  • Passion – How mutually attractive do you find each other
  • Connection – Feelings associated with intimacy with your partner
  • Immediacy – What are your thoughts on how fast love happens. Does pace affect the success of a relationship?
  • Destiny – Do you believe things are already written or do relationships need hard work?

Given these four gauges, we can see how it would be almost impossible for a person to have the exact same expectations as another. It can happen but either way, having expectations can lead to disappointments.

When we have expectations we project our beliefs and wants on our lover, no longer incorporating their needs and wants. We may also start analyzing to determine if they have met the expectations that we have set.

Issues may arise when your needs are not met or properly understood by your partner; and when communication breaks down, there is no way to circumvent misunderstandings.

Let’s look at a graphic taken by some statistics on expectations which could be seen in the most important and reasons to marry. The survey was conducted by the Pew Research Center.

5 Ways to Mess up  relationship - Reasons

You can see that love, life commitment, and companionship were the top three reasons respectively, and children, ceremony and finances came in after.

5. Lack of Appreciation

Appreciation is very important in maintaining a healthy relationship dynamic because it serves to satisfy a basic human need. We all want to be loved and appreciated so when you cannot display gratitude to your mate, it could produce a destructive path.

Having a lack of appreciation for the things your partner does for you, a world of arguments, misplaced emotions, passive-aggressiveness, and even cheating could manifest. No one wants to feel as though they are putting in effort for no good reason.

Showing appreciation is as easy as telling your mate “thank you” or ” I appreciate you”. The little things may not carry a lot of weight initially, but over time, they start to become more important.

Remember in the beginning stages of a relationship, when everything is fresh and new; you send good morning and good night texts? What happens to that? It seems like a part of human nature comes in and we get complacent because we are with the person.

We practice and take care of ourselves for the attraction, but not the upkeep. Lack of appreciation can ruin something good in no time.


Relationships take a lot of work to manage. There are a lot of ways that can lead to the destruction of a relationship. We discussed how insecurities can lead to you not trusting your partner, becoming jealous and seeking approval.

While these behaviors may be okay in small amounts, over time, your partner may see your behaviors as toxic and negative.

Trust is one of the most important aspects of a relationship. The foundation of relationships should be built on trust, because without it, how can you rely on your spouse?

Lack of trust can easily heighten jealous tendencies and lead to controlling behaviors. Having poor communication skills does not allow you to accurately understand your mate.

Explaining basic wants and needs becomes difficult when you cannot communicate properly with your mate.

Lastly, having expectations and not appreciating your spouse can cause relationship problems because having expectations lead to disappointments and lack of appreciation makes your partner feel unwanted or undervalued.

Fixing these issues in a relationship can promote healthy boundaries, a better understanding of one another, and help strengthen your bond. There are no perfect relationships, but with some work, communication, and understanding, we can get to a better place.

Which way to mess up a relationship is most important to you? Drop us a line in the comment box below. And if you found any value in this post please share it, social links are at the sidebar on the top right. Thank you!

This Post Has 12 Comments

  1. MD Sharif

    Thank you so much for providing such a beautiful information.Gifted a very informative article, if I could read the article before then I would have benefited a lot more.The relationship between us had to end because we didn’t want each other to understand.Later we are separated.However, I have learned from your article a lot of information on how to maintain a relationship.
    Thank you again.

    1. Kay Cee

      Hey Sharif,

      Thanks for checking out the article. Sometimes we get the information we need at the right time, not when we want. I hope the info helps you in the future!

      – Kay

  2. John

    This is absolutely one article that people in a relationship cannot afford to miss.

    Your specific point that lack of trust is an important aspect of relationship, is one that cannot be overlooked. Trust issues cause a lot of harm even when both partners don’t realise this. A lot of work is involved in maintaining a healthy relationship, but I believe lack of trust happens to be the utmost cause.

    Lack of communication is one thing that fights against trust issues. Without both partners being able to voice out their thoughts, neither are going to understand the reasons behind some actions. Like my mother used to say, ‘I’m not a mind reader,’ partners should not keep silent and expect each other to perfectly grasp reasons.

    In all, I think the post was highly educative. People who are in relationships, and that’s a lot of them, would definitely find this post super helpful. Thanks for the awesome post.

    1. Kay Cee


      Thanks for your reply. Trust and communication are both foundational elements that cannot be ignored when forming a relationship. We cannot read minds if our partners do not speak up and this can lead to a break down in trust. And, vice-versa. Thanks for the comment.

  3. Shanta Rahman

    First of all, many thanks to you for such a wonderful article .There are actually many strategies to sustain a relationship because for some mistakes a relationship can end completely .Just as technology has improved in the current world, there is a potential for harm if they are not utilized properly .Personally, I have eliminated doubts, given freedom, compromised, etc. to sustain my relationship. Because I think these things are important to sustaining a relationship .Trust is one of the most important things in a relationship .I gained a lot of important knowledge through your articles and I think that the tips you give to my life will have a significant impact. 

    I have gained a lot of knowledge through your articles and I think they can have a significant impact on my relationships and I hope that reading your articles will greatly benefit everyone and they will certainly share their new experiences while maintaining peace in their relationship.

    1. Kay Cee

      Hey Shanta,

      Thanks for stopping by. I am glad that you were able to get some helpful information from the articles. Being able to eliminate negative habits is not always easy to do, so I commend you. Thanks again!

  4. Chimmhogevagreenesnr

    Hello there! Thanks for sharing this article, for me , I think Trust issues is the problem of many relationship and even friendships nowadays as Mistrust is a valid response to feeling betrayed or abandoned which is usually as a result of past experience. I think if the individuals involved can fight this problem it will go a long way to save them the stress.

    1. Kay Cee


      Trust is a very sensitive topic because once it is compromised, it is hard to restore. A lot of relationships and friendships, forget the importance of being honest with one another. You do not have to always say things that someone wants to hear, but you can be honest to hopefully work out your differences. Thanks for stopping by!

  5. Robert

    I agree that these points can cause problems.I had to overcome many in my earlier relationships. These were not solely responsible to me, because your significant other can play a role in it. Everything in a relationship is a two-way street. But I am happy to say I found my soul mate. We click on all things and what keeps us together is lots of sex.

    I know you may be thinking, how can lots of sex be the answer? If you have a relationship that is very sexually active this increases one’s confidence and quiets the insecurities one may have in the area of pleasing their partner. Also if you have a sexually active relationship, there is less chance that the other person will look elsewhere for acceptance.

    All of this I have found opens up communication, builds trust in knowing that your partner wants you and only you, and also gets rid of the jealousy aspect while increasing romance and intimacy. A relationship without sex would sow doubt and insecurity. I know many people find sex awkward, but sex is just as important in a relationship as love and trust.

    1. Kay Cee

      Hey Robert,

      I do understand the importance sex plays in a relationship. Being intimate with that special someone does prevent some trust issues and feelings of insecurity from manifesting. I hope most people don’t think sex is awkward, it’s a natural part of life! Thanks for reading.

  6. Joo

    Thanks for this very insightful article. I wish I had found this earlier.

    For me, the main problem is communication. Especially with kids, the crazily hectic life at home is all about school work, cooking, washing up, doctors’ visits when they fall sick, etc. There is literally zero time for heart to heart communication between my husband and I. We do still try to make the effort, like half an hour per day, which is better than nothing.

    Your article has also served me a timely reminder to get some couple time with him. Thanks for this!

    1. Kay Cee


      Thank you for the comment. Communication is normally a problem in relationships. It’s one of those things that start off small and grow and fester until everything becomes an issue. A part of me is happy that I do not have the extra obligations that will deplete my time. Time is a very complicated factor and when you are in a relationship, it can be an issue as well. That’s when communication, understanding, and compromise come into play.

      Thanks for the post and don’t forget to spend some time 🙂

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