The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse Who Ended Relationships

The veteran of marriage and divorce research, Dr. John and Julie Gottman have worked with more than 3,000 couples to determine what ends male and female relationships. Gottman Observes couples who come to him as clients; applies a unique methodology throughout therapy and predicts that couples will continue their marriage or divorce within the first five years. This estimate turns out to be correct at a rate of 94.7%. But what justifies Gottman? In the dialogues of Gottman couples; see if they use the four horsemen of the apocalypse. The four horsemen of the apocalypse; criticism, defense, wall building and humiliation. If couples use them in their relationship with their spouse, it means they are nearing the end.


Humiliation is one of the most negative forms of behavior that should not be in relationships. It is the situation in which one of the spouses considers himself superior to the other and belittles the other. In such a relationship, conflict will be inevitable. Since insulting expressions also contain messages of disgust, it will be impossible to solve the problems and will lead to the end of the relationship. For example; “You’re so incompetent” “I told you so.” “What you’re doing is pure idiocy.” etc. Personal accusations contain humiliation. What needs to be in a happy relationship is appreciation and respect instead of humiliation.


Criticism is negative statements about character and personality. Complaints between couples are inevitable; however, complaint and criticism are concepts that are often confused with each other. For example; The expression “I’m tired of you talking about yourself all the time, how selfish you are” is criticism while “I feel unimportant when you talk about yourself all the time and don’t ask how I am, can you please be more careful about this?” is a complaint. What should be in a happy relationship is the expression “you”. is to use the language of “I” and express emotions instead of criticizing.


Another behavior that causes the relationship to end is the couple’s constant self-defense, without trying to take sides.

The most distinctive feature in defense is not hearing what the other party is saying. When one couple criticizes the other, the other gets into a defensive position;

However, since the defense is a kind of accusation against the other party and contains the message “it’s not me, it’s you”, the conflict continues to increase. A vicious circle occurs. For example, “it’s your fault.”, “you are responsible for this.” , “you are doing this more. Expressions include defense and guilt at the same time. What should be in a happy relationship like this is not only trying to defend oneself, but also accepting a part of the problem in the conflict and taking responsibility.


Although wall-building may seem less dangerous than the other three behaviors, it is actually one of the behaviors that harms the relationship the most. Walling is when one of the couples cuts off physical and mental communication and does not speak during an argument. On the basis of this behavior, it is dangerous because it gives the message “you are worthless” to the other party. For example, being offended or remaining silent is a wall-building behavior. The key to a happy relationship is to talk about the problem after you’ve calmed down.

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