Relationships are the best teachers, as one of my favorite people is fond of saying.
And while they are great teachers, that doesn’t mean that you’re learning lessons that you’re enjoying or are necessarily good for you. There’s that first few weeks-to-months of a relationship that are the honeymoon period, and then there’s what happens after that period.
What happens next is absolutely crucial to whether or not you are with the right person.
Here are 7 things to look out for:
1. You don’t necessarily really like this person anymore.
After the initial excitement fades, the thought of calling them or being with them doesn’t make you happy…it makes you upset, depressed or just plain unhappy. The KonMari method of cleaning your house involves holding an object in your hand and evaluating whether it brings you joy (it’s a keeper) or not (it’s time to get rid of it). You can do this with your relationship too: if that person doesn’t bring you joy, it’s probably time to move on.
2. You feel annoyance and resentment towards them.
It’s normal for couples to fight; after all, you are two different people. If you’re finding that you are annoyed and resentful at your partner after a fight or just in general, however, you might want to end that relationship before the annoyances get impossible and the resentments are huge.
3. You can’t converse without placing blame.
If every conversation you have seems to get you into a fight, and you’re constantly thinking about how your partner doesn’t measure up, you’re probably not with the right person.
4. There’s no common ground anymore.
You can remember that probably at one point you had some things in common, but you can’t seem to remember what they are. Additionally, you don’t really enjoy doing things together. This probably indicates that you’re not with the right person for you.
5. You’re not yourself.
Meaning, you spend an inordinate amount of time and energy trying to figure out how to make your relationship better, and you’re tense, stressed out and unhappy because of this. If this is going on, you’re with the wrong person. Your relationship should feel (mostly) joyful, not like something that constantly requires reframing and renegotiating and work in general.
6. You’re looking hopefully at other potential partners.
Okay, so huge alarm bells should be firing for you at this point. If you’re looking for relationship-style happiness from someone who isn’t your partner, or even just “keeping an eye open” for a potentially better mate, you’re with the wrong person.
7. You just don’t care anymore.
As Elie Wiesel famously stated, “The opposite of love is not hate, it’s indifference.” Indifference is an absolute relationship-killer. If you can’t muster any interest or feelings for your partner at all, you’re pretty much definitely with the wrong person.
What to do now? Counseling or couple’s therapy may be a possibility if you’re both really committed to trying to make the relationship work or if you have exigent reasons for doing so (children, business, property, home together, etc.) but often, these issues are pretty comprehensive warning signs that your relationship is in trouble and you need to (kindly, gently if possible) end it and move on.