Think about playing chess. When you play the game, you try to outsmart your opponent to checkmate his king. As you get better at playing the game, you learn to think several moves ahead. As you start to get to good at playing the game, you start to think ten or more moves ahead.
With relationships, every day you deal with the relationship, you’re playing a game of reverse chess. You play according to how the relationship is today, and how it was three hours, three days, three weeks, or three months ago. Women, with their masterful memories, lodging exact dates of arguments, what you said verbatim, and other otherwise innocuous actions play the game this way. This is why I think guys are surprised when relationships fail – they fail to think far enough in the past and fail to accurately identify fault lines in the relationship.
Players who find themselves surprised may accurate identify fault lines, but find themselves being outclassed in the ‘reverse chess match’ if they don’t deal with them right away.