Are you wondering if it’s time to exit stage left in your relationship? Whether you’ve been dating for a few months or you’ve been exclusive for a few years, there will likely come a point when you start questioning your relationship with your significant other. Questioning your love for the person you’re with is one of the first signs that you are considering ending the relationship. If you and your partner are at a point where you’re feeling like the relationship is too hard and it’s constantly draining you, this is an indicator that there are problems to come in your relationship. In a healthy relationship, both parties take responsibility for their actions and any issues surfacing, not coming up with constant reasons to throw in the towel. If there’s a problem, there should be a desire on both ends to do what’s necessary to make things better. If there is little to no concern, your relationship is probably on the outs. While the thought of ending it can be heartbreaking, it is also very necessary. The truth is, ending a relationship is never easy and because of this and it may be particularly hard to call it quits, but it’s important that you’re honest with yourself and the person you’re with. Before you leave your relationship, consider these six things.
1. Why Am I in This Relationship?
This may seem like an easy question to answer, but it’s not always as simple as it seems. It’s best to ask yourself this question once the “honeymoon phase” is over. Love can be blind, but when it comes down to it, you need to be able to answer this question honestly. It may sound painfully obvious, but your tendency to quiet those relationship doubts may end up being a huge regret later on. So many times we look back on a bad relationship and only in hindsight can we really see the signs for what they really were. But if you really think about it, you knew the answer the whole time, you just wanted to ignore it for whatever reason. Instead, be more proactive about your relationship concerns and address them with your partner – or move on before you get hurt.
2. What Does My Future Look Like With My Partner?
If the thoughts about your relationship future begin to wane, this is a major sign your relationship has reached its expiration date. When you’re happy with the person you’re with, all you can do is imagine building with them. When you’re not happy with the person you’re with, all you think about is if the grass is greener on the other side. It can be intimidating to think about the future, but usually if you’re with the right person, it’s a topic you’re both eager to discuss. Healthy relationships involve people that are able to grow together. They support one another and encourage each other to enjoy themselves, knowing that at the end of the day their love is strong enough to last through it all. You shouldn’t feel like your partner is holding you back in any way.
3. Are My Needs Being Met?
We all have certain desires and expectations for how we expect to be treated by the people we care about and some of those desires and expectations are actual needs. In other words we can’t survive and thrive as individuals if those needs aren’t met. So if one or both of you is failing to have your most basic emotional needs addressed by the connection you share, then that’s a definite sign that your relationship may be in jeopardy. People with a strong emotional desire for connection in a relationship like to do many things with their partner, big and small. They prefer to share tasks and make decisions together. Someone with a greater need for autonomy may prefer to just get a simple task don alone, and together for more playful purposes If you find that you have opposing needs, you need to work on win-win solutions that allow both of you to get what you need. If you don’t deal with this, it can lead to resentment and/or passive aggressive compliance that later turns into secretive behaviors.
4. Am I Still In Love With My Partner or Just the Idea of Them?
Many couples fall into a routine the longer they’ve been together. If being with someone feels more like a comforting habit than being in love, it’s time to reconsider. More importantly, if the only reason you’re still with someone is because the act of breaking up with them is too daunting, then you shouldn’t be with them. It’s not fair to yourself, or your partner to stay in a relationship because you’re scared of being along. The person you’re with should add to your already secure life – they shouldn’t feel like a crutch. It can be difficult to reflect on the current state of your relationship, especially after years of being with someone, but it’s how you know you’re truly where you want to be.
5. Am I Treated With Respect/Do I Respect My Partner?
One of the most important aspects of a relationship is respect. Being with someone you respect and admire is key to being in a healthy relationship. You should be proud of the person you’re with and the way you two interact. If you’re making excuses for who they are or hiding parts of your relationship from friends, that’s not ok. You deserve to be respected and you deserve to be with someone who you can respect too. Knowing your self-worth is one of the greatest ways to ensure you’re being treated properly. If you have low expectations for yourself and don’t treat yourself with respect, chances are you won’t recognize when your partner is wrong. Be confident in what you desire, love who you are, and set an example of how you should be treated by treating yourself the same way.
6. Will I Be Happier With or Without This Person?
Ask yourself how your world will change when you split? Will you be happier with or without them? Before you break up with your partner, prepare for what’s next. Things will change. Your housing situation may get complicated. Your social life will change significantly, both in how you spend your time and who you spend your time with. Your daily routine will no longer be routine. While the fear of the change or the unknown shouldn’t stop you from leaving an unhealthy relationship, ending things before you’ve considered the first few steps pre-breakup can make a sad situation even more stressful and overwhelming. As you’re considering these consequences, ask yourself if ending the relationship is something you will ultimately regret? Deep down, you know the answer.
When times get tough, it’s easy for the mind to drift to fantasyland. Don’t get caught up in the “grass is greener” games, concluding that life will be better once you re-enter the land of singleness. Don’t assume your current state of unhappiness is solely the fault of the relationship. A relationship will fail eventually if you’re not all in. Don’t blame your partner for a crumbling romance if you haven’t given your best to the relationship. If you’re hesitant to say goodbye, try throwing yourself back into the relationship full throttle. If you still care, don’t let the love fizzle without a fight.