What is your relationship failure rate?

Discussion in 'Relationships, Discrimination, and Jealousy' started by Drifterwood, Dec 16, 2010.

  1. Drifterwood

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2007
    Messages:
    15,725
    Likes Received:
    386
    Location:
    Fingringhoe (GB)
    Open question to everyone.

    I would say that I have had four to six serious relationships, in that I was fairly well embedded and things could have become "permanent". They all ended, so my "failure" rate is 100% :redface:. They weren't failures while they were happening, but the fact remains that they ended.

    The point I wish to raise is that if you think about it, the vast majority of modern relationships are not permanent.

    Interesting? Or am I stating the obvious?
     
    #1 Drifterwood, Dec 16, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2010
  2. The Dragon

    The Dragon New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2007
    Messages:
    6,278
    Likes Received:
    6
    I do believe that most relationships have a finite life span and this could be for a range of reasons.

    It can be tough buying into the "happily ever after" fairytale, hanging on it (the relationship) overlong, only to have it turn into a nightmare.
     
  3. LadyJaneGrey

    LadyJaneGrey New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2010
    Messages:
    23
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    The Tower
    A finite life span as Dragonfly20 calls it does not necessarily mean failure.

    I have had 3 unconventional relationships with men all of which ended unsatisfactorily for both parties which I consider a failure.

    These were unconventional in that there was no sexual fidelity required by either side.

    I was very young for the first 2 only 17-20 and I was 23 when the last ended.

    I then had a conventional monogamous relationship that lasted several years and ended very badly indeed.

    That too was a failure.

    My reasons for entering that relationship were poor though I did not know it at the time and I only stuck with it as long as I did because of a perverse martyr complex I had going on.

    I am lucky he ran away.

    I am now in another monogamous relationship and have a partner who I have a great deal of faith in both as a friend and a lover.
     
  4. EmJay

    EmJay New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2006
    Messages:
    572
    Likes Received:
    1
    I probably don't really understand this question..

    But..I am single..so that would mean 100% failure rate right?:smile:

    I did leave behind a 12,5 year relationship and a 1 year relationship..everything else has been a few weeks to 6 mnths
     
  5. Drifterwood

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2007
    Messages:
    15,725
    Likes Received:
    386
    Location:
    Fingringhoe (GB)
    Correct - I tried to make it sound a bit better by saying that previous relationships had been successful, just not permanent. :smile:

    It is a strange thought though that us singles have a 100% failure rate. I don't see things in those traditional monogamy terms though.
     
  6. nudeyorker

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2006
    Messages:
    42,918
    Likes Received:
    38
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    NYC/Honolulu
    I don't really equate the end of a relationship as a failure. Two of my relationships ended because of death. I don't think I can fault them with that. Two others ended with me leaving. In all cases I was able to take something from each experience that somehow made me stronger and/or wiser; that is not failure from my perspective. I'm currently in a LTR and short of death we are both in this for the long run but like with most things in life you can't judge the future by the past.
     
  7. exwhyzee

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2005
    Messages:
    4,578
    Likes Received:
    36
    Gender:
    Male
    Even if you went back 100 years and looked at the romantic models for relationships, where boy meets girl very young, they get married, have kids, have grandkids, and die within hours of each other...there were often a number of side stories of infidelity, nonsexual relationships, and even abuse. Though the relationships were still intact, is it not recognized that they failed too?

    On the other end of the spectrum, I know of a couple who met when they were kids in a small town, went to the same church, same schools, and they got married after he graduated from college. They had kids, stayed together their entire life until he died. She is now frail and miserable and content with the idea of death just to join her husband. Is that the definition of a successful relationship?

    If we try to gauge relationship failure rates...what defines relationship success?

    Personally, I have a terrible track record of relationships gone bad. There are one or two that ended on practical terms when one or the other had to move away from work.
     
  8. Magnus_Phallus

    Verified Gold Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2010
    Messages:
    674
    Albums:
    4
    Likes Received:
    294
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Global
    Verified:
    Photo
    I only had 3 relationships that could qualify (in a conventional sense)
    every time they did not really end in the traditional way.
    My "relationships" kind of just faded away.
    Funny thing, I stayed friends will all 3 of them,
    we still see each other socially...
    and on occasion we still "see" each other.

    Success? Faliure? I couldnt say.
    my relationships seem to mutate into something else.
    Honestly I am quite comfortable with that.

    judging from what I can read here, I think its
    time for a paradigm shift on "relationships"

    But what do I know
     
  9. Drifterwood

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2007
    Messages:
    15,725
    Likes Received:
    386
    Location:
    Fingringhoe (GB)
    I don't disagree with anything you say. I think what has changed is the expectation, inwardly and outwardly. This leads to several interesting questions (to me) about the law covering relationships and expectations.
     
  10. helgaleena

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2006
    Messages:
    5,663
    Albums:
    2
    Likes Received:
    4
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Wisconsin USA
    I have a 100 % success rate. I managed to get away every time. And the one I am in now, I am guaranteed not to get caught!
     
  11. silvertriumph2

    Verified Gold Member

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2007
    Messages:
    5,507
    Albums:
    3
    Likes Received:
    2,089
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Eastcoast USA (NYC-Manhattan)
    Verified:
    Photo

    I have to agree with
    nudeyorker, for I have never thought that any of my former relationships have been failures...on either of our parts. Things change.

    I have to agree with
    exwhyzee also. You can't compare relationships from another age, or even today, for we don't know what made them stay together or leave. Regarding the so called stable and long lasting marriages of another time...we will never know if it was a bad marriage, what made them stay. Was it the attitudes and expectations of family or society? Religion? For the children's sake? Today, these restrictions have little effect.

    My marriage and relationships have all been good, and I've always come away with good memories
    and I have come away with nothing but good things from each. None are, nor will they ever be regretted. All are, and will always, remain as good friends and a certain amount of our love will
    never die. If my in-laws had not been so intrusive into our marriage, I am sure she and I and our
    family would still be together today.

    I am now in a relationship that I hope will be the last one...
     
    #11 silvertriumph2, Dec 16, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2010
  12. D_Doe_Ray_Mi

    D_Doe_Ray_Mi Account Disabled

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2009
    Messages:
    988
    Likes Received:
    17
    I echo silver above. i have been married twice and in many significant relationships in between and since. i have absolutely no regrets and do not consider any other than my first marriage a failure due to youth, naivety, her alcoholism and related adultery. Every relationship has contributed to my growth, life experience and learning and has made me the man I am today. I believe each relationship prepared me perfectly for the lessons awaiting me in the unknown next. Failure . . . NO WAY! Rather a rich life experience filled with love, communication, service, great sexual sharing and expression. I can honestly say that any of my exes would be pleasantly thrilled to hear from me, share about our respective lives, learnings and depth of appreciation for our live paths having been shared!!!
     
  13. B_quietguy

    B_quietguy New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2005
    Messages:
    1,286
    Likes Received:
    5
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Bay Area, California
    I'm adding voice to the chorus of people who say permanence has nothing to do with relationship success or failure.

    To me, a relationship is a failure if somebody is harmed, or prevented from growing, or does not have their needs met.

    If a relationship lasts 50 years or 50 days, as long as it meets each partner's needs, then it is a success.

    If you end it after a while because you grew apart or realized you were not compatible, then don't call that a failure. Just call it a learning experience. You now know better what kind of person is not going to be a good partner for you. After a few learning experiences, you become adept at finding out who is a good partner for you. Then when you meet somebody who is compatible with you, you can say "Yes" to that person with greater confidence in creating a long term successful relationship.

    On the flip side, just because a relationship lasts "til death do us part", does not make it a success. If one or more partners are abused, stifled, or not allowed to meet their needs for sex, intimacy, companionship, and security, then it is a failure. And a tragic failure for lasting so long.
     
  14. curious_angel

    Verified Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2010
    Messages:
    1,094
    Albums:
    2
    Likes Received:
    12
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    England
    Verified:
    Photo
    What are the legal questions you're referring to Drifterwood?
     
  15. silvertriumph2

    Verified Gold Member

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2007
    Messages:
    5,507
    Albums:
    3
    Likes Received:
    2,089
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Eastcoast USA (NYC-Manhattan)
    Verified:
    Photo
    ejackman and quietguy...well said!
     
  16. DavidXL

    Verified Gold Member

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2009
    Messages:
    764
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    230
    Gender:
    Male
    Verified:
    Photo
    I think I've heard Dan Savage say on his podcast something like every relationship you are in will fail - until one doesn't.
     
  17. Daisy

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2009
    Messages:
    4,995
    Likes Received:
    333
    Gender:
    Female
    I have failed every single relationship I've ever been in up until now. (get it??) :)
     
  18. Daisy

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2009
    Messages:
    4,995
    Likes Received:
    333
    Gender:
    Female
    OMG..OK so David XL and I are obviously on the same page..
     
  19. Bbucko

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2006
    Messages:
    7,413
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    58
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Sunny SoFla
    First relationship: Lasted about six months; I was too young (18) and desperate to start my own life. I learned a lot and achieved independence, but the relationship was in every sense of the word a failure.

    Second relationship: lasted almost a year; I was still too young (19) and, because we never cohabited have considered downgrading this the way Pluto is no longer a planet. It ended unilaterally on his part, left me broken hearted: can't say I learned much.

    Third relationship: lasted almost four years; even though I was 20, I consider this my first "adult" relationship. We shared all income and expenses, often to his detriment. The passion cooled quickly and we would up opening up the relationship after about 18 months: or love rapidly became fraternal rather than sexual. It was a messy break-up though we quickly regained a deep friendship. I learned a lot, and despite the nasty break-up consider it to have been a net-positive.

    Fourth relationship was an affair that blossomed while still involved in relationship #3, eventually lasting seven years on and off. As he was completely incapable of domestication, we never cohabited even once we both were free of other entanglements. For years we'd sneak in and out of each other's lives until he disappeared; I considered him the one that got away. We met up toward the end of his too-short life but by then the passion was gone. Much as I loved him, I'd say that one was a failure.

    Fifth relationship: lasted just over four years. He was the only son of a pair of wealthy Venezuelans. He taught me international travel and a broader outlook. Despite the fact that we quarreled constantly, I learned a tremendous amount, and when it was (finally!) over, we became best friends. I learned a lot from him.

    Sixth relationship moved me to Paris to live with him. I learned acres and boatloads and he remains the high point of my existence. Had he not died, I'd still be living a highly combative and (probably) toxic relationship with him, as I loved him immoderately. Burying him remains the low point in my existence.

    Seventh relationship was "coming home", as we grew up 18 months apart and within a half-mile of each other. It lasted nine years, though it should have ended at five. The net result was so toxic, I was lucky to escape alive.

    The last two were brief and completely toxic. They are why I choose to live alone.
     
  20. Drifterwood

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2007
    Messages:
    15,725
    Likes Received:
    386
    Location:
    Fingringhoe (GB)
    Very interesting points made by everyone. I didn't mean the thread title to be so controversial; perhaps it shows how different a question can be dependent upon the underlying moral norm of the issue. Within my own terms, I would say that only 2 of my relationships were failures.

    To answer your question, Curious, we seem to have a societal construct lag between what people do, want to do and need to do to be happy and how society wraps up relationships formally.

    The process of ending a formal relationship is punitive emotionally and financially to everyone. This hardly allows the personal growth that people are talking about from their own series of relationships. In fact quite the opposite, it coerces people to remain in unfulfillment.

    PS - very Helga :smile:

    PPS - having just read Bb's post, and Nudie's before, I have to say that I find the way Gay men have relationships, albeit given the many problems that society dumps on them, more representative of how men would prefer to live their lives, than the formal monogamous matrimony that is the traditional lot of the Str8 man. Perhaps some married str8 men hate them for that freedom, for better or for worse.
     
    #20 Drifterwood, Dec 17, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2010
Draft saved Draft deleted