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Virtually all couples will go through periods of turmoil within their marriage. In many cases, weathering these small storms will help a couple bond, and will strengthen their union. There are some circumstances, however, that go beyond these normal ups and downs, and are indicative of serious marital problems. For Florida spouses who are living in a tumultuous relationship, the presence of these concerns may mean that it is time to consider divorce.

One of the biggest red flags within a marriage involves excessive levels of control or dominating possessiveness. Having a high degree of attention from one’s spouse can be flattering, but when a partner demands to know every detail of one’s day, or challenges new or existing friendships, there may be trouble on the horizon. In many cases, controlling spouses seem very loving and protective in the early years, and their partners fail to recognize the signs of extreme possessiveness.

Another cause for concern is a spouse who is constantly critical toward his or her partner. This is also an area in which bad behavior can be insidious; many spouses fail to recognize an overly controlling partner until his or her behavior has escalated. Being subjected to a high degree of criticism can damage one’s self-esteem, and many victims begin to feel as though they deserve to be treated in such a way, and that they are not worthy of any other type of relationship.

For Florida spouses who feel as though their own relationship exhibits the behaviors outlined here, it is important to step back and make an objective assessment of the marriage. Breaking away from a possessive or emotionally abusive spouse is a difficult task, but one that is possible with the right level of guidance and support. As with any major life change, the best way to approach a divorce from a difficult spouse is to move into that process fully informed.

Source: The Huffington Post, “6 Signs It’s Time To Leave Your Marriage“, July 6, 2015