Signs Your Marriage Is Based More on Loneliness than Love

Is your marriage healthy?

Defining a healthy marriage can be like trying to pin down a moving target. It's a complex equation, varying from couple to couple, influenced by myriad factors such as personal values, cultural backgrounds, and life experiences. 

However, while the specifics may differ, certain universal elements seem to thread through relationships that are deemed "healthy."

Mutual respect

Mutual respect is paramount. This means acknowledging your partner's feelings and needs and treating them as an equal. You might ask yourself if you embrace their individuality, support their ambitions, and appreciate their contributions to the relationship. You might also ask yourself if you feel they do these same things for you.

Effective communication

Effective communication isn’t just about how you talk to each other; it’s about how you listen to each other as well. Does your spouse truly listen to you? Do you truly listen to them? Some people consider this to be an art. If either of you isn’t perfect at communication, it doesn’t mean you don’t love each other, nor does it mean your relationship is doomed. But it does suggest you might invest some time and energy in the quality of your communication with each other.

Suggested: 3 Little-Known Communication Tools to Improve Your Relationship

Shared goals and values

A healthy marriage thrives on shared goals and values. Do you and your spouse share goals related to your parenting or finances? Do your lifestyle choices align? It’s okay to have differences, of course – people are each unique, and you and your spouse don’t have to be carbon copies of each other. But how do the two of you navigate your differences? This is key.


We’re not just talking about physical attraction when we say “intimacy.” The kind of intimacy needed to fulfill people in a long-term relationship includes emotional closeness, intellectual stimulation, and spiritual compatibility. Do you feel connected even when you’re apart? Do you feel like you’re a part of a team? Do you feel loved, valued, and cherished?

Signs you married due to loneliness rather than love

Loneliness is a powerful motivator. It can compel us to seek companionship in those we normally would not. However, in marriage, a relationship forged by loneliness could potentially lead you down the wrong path.

Here are some signs that your decision to marry may have been driven by loneliness rather than love.

  1. You rushed into the decision to marry. If you hurried into marriage to fill a void in your life or because you were afraid of being alone, it might point to loneliness. A hasty decision often bypasses the necessary stages of relationship development: understanding, bonding, and accepting each other's flaws.
  2. It’s a dependency, not a partnership. In a healthy marriage, each person maintains their individuality while working as a team. If you find yourself overly dependent on your spouse for emotional support or simply to avoid solitude, it could indicate a fear of loneliness rather than a bond of love.
  3. There is a lack of deep connection. Love fosters a deep emotional connection. Loneliness, on the other hand, seeks any connection. If your relationship lacks meaningful conversation, shared values, and emotional intimacy and seems primarily to be about having someone around, it could indicate loneliness.
  4. You ignored red flags. Love is blind, they say. But loneliness can be even more blind. If you overlooked clear red flags before getting married because you didn't want to be alone, it's a sign of marrying out of loneliness.
  5. You feel isolated despite being married. Ironically, one of the most telling signs of a loneliness-driven marriage is feeling alone, even in the presence of your spouse. This could stem from an emotional disconnect or the realization that your partner isn't truly fulfilling your emotional needs.

Recognizing these signs is the first step toward addressing the issue. It's important to remember that everyone deserves a relationship based on love, respect, and mutual understanding, not fear of loneliness.

Getting help

If you question whether your marriage is based more on loneliness than love, it might be time to seek professional guidance.

  • Marital counseling is a potent resource. A counselor can provide an objective perspective and facilitate open communication between partners, helping to unearth and address underlying issues.
  • Individual therapy allows you to explore your feelings in-depth and understand how your fear of loneliness might be affecting your relationship decisions.
  • Life coaching is another avenue to consider. A life coach can guide you towards clarity, helping you define your goals, and charting a course to achieve them.
  • Couples counseling can help both partners voice their concerns, fears, and expectations in a safe environment. The goal is to enhance understanding and empathy, which are both critical aspects of a healthy relationship.
  • If divorce is on the table, a divorce coach can be invaluable. They can help you discern whether divorce is truly the right path or if there's potential for reconciliation.

Asking for help isn't a sign of weakness. It shows you're ready to confront the difficult questions and seek solutions. A more detailed list of the types of couples therapy is available from the National Library of Medicine here.

At Hello Divorce, we’re here if you want our help. To learn about what we have to offer, including divorce coaching and simplified online divorce plans, we invite you to schedule a free 15-minute phone call with us.

Suggested reading:


Summary of Couples Therapy Interventions. National Library of Medicine.

Divorce Content Specialist & Lawyer
Divorce Strategy, Divorce Process, Legal Insights

Bryan is a non-practicing lawyer, HR consultant, and legal content writer. With nearly 20 years of experience in the legal field, he has a deep understanding of family and employment laws. His goal is to provide readers with clear and accessible information about the law, and to help people succeed by providing them with the knowledge and tools they need to navigate the legal landscape. Bryan lives in Orlando, Florida.