It would be nice if life’s most important lessons came wrapped in a neat package and delivered to your front door. Unfortunately, many of the most essential lessons about life and love come the hard way—through disappointments, setbacks, and failures.
Beginning in 1986, Dr. Terri Orbuch tracked the lives of 373 married couples and found that, more than two decades later, nearly half had split up. The lessons for those broken-up couples may serve as helpful advice for singles who want a relationship that won’t end in divorce. Here are eight things those people wished they’d learned sooner: