Relationship stress

Relationship stress can arise between any number of interpersonal relationships including; spouses, co-workers, parents and children, friends and even complete strangers.

Relationship stress and problems arise from many different causes. Scientific research has reported that miscommunication or lack of communication and subsequent misunderstanding is the most common cause of relationship stress.

A chronic misinterpretation is a major contributing factor of relationship problems. Often people become offended, angry and irritable over a scenario that when viewed from alternative perspectives, or clarified with the partner involved, the need for conflict would disband.

Specific stress management techniques can be used to help cope with relationship stress but more importantly help an individual establish their own coping techniques in order that should relationship conflict arise are in a better position to respond to the stressor rather than mindlessly react.


Divorce and separation from a long term partner are recognised as two of the most stressful changes to occur to a person’s life time. The long and emotionally charged process of divorce is riddled with stress at every stage, decisions about finances, complete life changing upheavals that often not only affect the two people but also children, friends and extended family aswell.

Divorce can lead to individuals questioning almost everything they had previously known to be stable in their lives including one’s own identity while also deciding whether they have the strength and determination to cope alone. Divorce and separation from a partner whom would have invariably been a support network, can also bring to light previous insecurities and fears.

There are a number of coping mechanisms that a person going through divorce can adopt in order to keep stress and anxiety levels to a minimum. Techniques such as mindfulness and yoga can help dispel burnout and ensure long term health is not negatively affected by the stress of this life event.

How divorce can cause stress in children

Divorce from a child’s perspective can be a very stressful, scary and uncertain. Divorce almost always comes with changes in the amount of contact time with each parent, moving house, changes in living standards, changes in family circles and networks and potentially pressure to choose the side of either the mother or the father.

In order to minimise the impact of divorce on a child’s stress levels and overall emotional wellbeing; transparency surrounding the process and constant reassurance that the child is not at fault. Additionally, child psychologists have encouraged parents to avoid communicating via the child to maintain the parent child relationship. Finally, ensuring a minimal level of disturbance is made to the child’s socio-economic lifestyle can make the life event easier to deal with.

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