Relationships are complicated at worst and magical at best. It's our innate desire for companionship and love that keeps many of us in these partnerships. Not all great things should come to an end but the key is to be able to recognize when they should. A relationship is equally showing love to the other person as well as to yourself. When you lose sight of this key rule, you can easily turn the most magical relationship into a nightmare. Here are a few key indicators that things are beginning to go take a spiral downward in your relationship:
No. 1: The Death of Appreciation
When you champion your partner, and I mean you are their biggest cheerleader, it can be daunting to not feel the same support. Appreciation through words and actions, which is a major key to a relationship, is how we show and continue to prove our love to each other. Without it, it can quickly make the relationship one-sided and take its toll. Talk about draining.
Result: Constant bickering that your partner doesn't do enough for you.
No. 2: Defense Mode Activated
If you have to constantly defend your partner's actions to friends and family, it's probably an indication that things are not right. It's one thing to support your partner's opinion because they are entitled to it, but when they are doing things purposefully to hurt you and others notice, it becomes a problem. If your first reaction is to defend and deflect, its probably because you don't agree either. Remember that your inner circle knows you well. If they think something is off about your partner, then there is probably something to it.
Result: Full on hermit status or less interaction with friends/family to avoid being defensive (not good)!
No. 3: R.I.P. to Trust
If the trust meter on your relationship has died, it's time to make some major considerations. As someone much wiser than I once said, "Trust is lost a mile at a time and earned back only a foot at a time." I agree with this statement one hundred percent. Once one person in the relationship has lost the ability to trust the other, he/she can start to question EVERYTHING such as, "Who is that? Where were you? Why did you move this way? Why did you sigh at that comment?" The anxiety and stress that result from a loss of trust are incredible when you consider it. Depending on how long you've been together with your partner, you may be able to salvage it and in other cases, it might be time to cut your losses and begin anew.
No. 4: The "You've Changed" Argument. Duh.
Honestly, everything about this statement annoys my soul on end. First, everyone changes because change is inevitable. If we all remained our immature 17-year old selves, we would have huge problems. The key is that you change and grow together and likely if you're having this conversation, one has outgrown the other or worse, grown apart. Recognizing these changes and whether or not you can adjust to them will be personal and indicative of whether or not it's time to leave.
No. 5: The "It's Us or Them" Ultimatum
If your partner is making you choose between being with them or maintaining your friendships in any capacity, it's definitely a sign that things have gone left. Really there are only a few reasons for putting such an ultimatum into the open but the main one is power. Isolation from friends results in your partner being your only support system. When they aren't available what will you do? This is an impossible ultimatum, you should never have to choose between either, they should go hand and hand.
No. 6: Earth to Self?
Losing sight of yourself in a relationship is detrimental in many ways. You begin to blame your partner, blame the relationship itself when really you need to take a look in the mirror. The point at which your relationship has consumed you and has made you lose sight of who you are, what makes you happy, and why you are here means it's time for a break, at least. Many will argue that your partner should be able to "bring you back," but there is a level of independent soul-searching that must be accomplished for this to even be possible. It's one thing to be supported by their love and it's another to be wrapped up and barely able to breathe because of it. Know the difference.
No. 7: Saying "I love you" is a chore.
When you lose the emotional attachment to the phrase "I love you," the relationship will begin to crumble. At first, you will try to fight it by maybe blaming it on a bad day, but you can't fight what your subconscious already knows. It will begin to spread to other things including your sex life and agitation levels. You might even become anxious about the impending future. Don't run from it, face it head-on.
Overall, relationships are complicated and choosing your player two in this game we call life can be a challenge as well as magical. But there comes a point where you have to consider if player two is actually the one. If you are experiencing any of the above signs, perhaps it's better to just walk away from the relationship. Walk away because you love that person enough to want the best for them but also for yourself.
Time to play the breakup playlist...