Every relationship has issues and obstacles. It’s up to you to decide if these are the normal “I-love-you-but-you-bug-me-sometimes” kind issues, or if you’re not being appreciated, loved, or given the attention you deserve.
Although we struggle in our relationships, we always know deep down if it’s best for us or if we’re staying in it for the wrong reasons. Often we are worried about starting something new. Or the arguments about who’s turn it is to take out the trash or do the dishes. Those are small, fixable concerns.
If you are constantly feeling neglected, disrespected, or crying and fighting with your partner, there might be more deep-seated issues to consider when figuring out the future of your relationship.
This blog is all about looking for signs to keep fighting for your relationship, and signs that it’s time to let it go and move on with your life, no matter how tough it might be.
When to walk away from a relationship
1. Your needs aren’t being met
It’s time to go if time and time again you are not being given what you need. This might be romantically, physically, emotionally, or intellectually. In reality, we all have different needs that we look for in a partner, and if you aren’t being given them then it’s most likely not the relationship for you.
This is especially true if your emotional needs aren’t being met. If your partner is manipulative, rude, invalidating, or hurtful to you emotionally, it can often turn into an emotionally abusive relationship. Emotional needs are often hard to ask for from your partner because it really comes down to the way that both people treat one another, interact, and communicate daily.
If you’ve asked or discussed this issue before and your partner is still not working with you to improve your connection, communication, or the quality time you spend together, it’s time to leave.
This often will not improve over time, especially if you’ve already verbalized your desire for change. You deserve to have your needs met. You deserve more.
Pack your bags, sis.
2. You’re afraid to be alone
This is all too common. Sometimes we stay in relationships simply because we cannot handle being alone or feeling lonely.
This issue is two-fold. First, if you are unhappy in your relationship, then make sure you investigate why. But if you’ve already settled on your desire to leave the relationship and the only thing holding you back is yourself, that’s another issue.
Being afraid of being alone can stem from many different places. Often, it is a result of low self-esteem, abandonment issues, or a lack of experience doing things by yourself. These are things we can grow to understand and change in our lives. But by no means should we hold on to a relationship we aren’t happy with to avoid learning more about ourselves.
So, embrace the unknown. Do it for yourself. Embrace being lonely, pick up new hobbies, reconnect with old friends, travel by yourself! It might be scary at first, but most people grow to love their own company just as much as any relationship.
3. When the relationship drains more energy than it gives you
If you are in a relationship that genuinely exhausts you more than it fuels you, it’s time to leave honey.
When you’re around your partner, are you constantly taking care of them, cooking for them, cleaning up after them, arguing with them, or compromising parts of yourself to make them happy? That’s where the energy drain stems from.
And yes, when we love people, we ENJOY doing these things for them. That’s the difference. When taking care of your partner stops feeling enjoyable, you’ll know that you’re stuck in an energy-draining place.
Relationships should have plenty of give AND take. You should simultaneously be fueled by your partner’s love, care, and affection. They should let you rest while they clean the dishes. They should listen to your day at work and let you vent when you need to. They should rub your back while you watch TV if you’re stressed.
If you are constantly giving more than you are being given, it’s time to reflect on that:
Do they deserve this energy from you?
Are they appreciative?
Do they return the favor?
If your energy is being given to someone who does not respect your love, it’s time to protect your ENERGY, girlfriend. Pack it up and pack it in. Go take care of yourself, instead.
When to fight for a relationship
1. If you have small fights
If you are worried about your relationship because you spend a lot of time bickering or battling about little things, listen up.
YES, it is annoying to feel like you are constantly getting frustrated at one another about things, especially if they’re tiny (doing the dishes, walking the dog, whose in-laws to visit on Easter). This doesn’t mean this can’t be worked on.
It all depends. If you truly love this person and you see a real future with them, then maybe it’s time to work on some ways to improve your communication. No, you cannot spend the next 50 years together bickering every day. So, how do you avoid it?
Set up a schedule for little chores. Make sure to have date nights set aside so that you can both be as busy as you need to be throughout the week. Alternate visiting in-laws so that it’s fair.
These need to be things you decide TOGETHER. If you are mature enough to work around the things you bicker about and to come to a real solution, it shows you are both committed to making things better and working on getting over the bumps now so that your future is all smooth sailing from here.
2. If you have different tastes
You are dating a human being who does not share your DNA. Therefore, you will NATURALLY have different tastes and interests than one another. That shouldn’t necessarily be a deal-breaker.
Similar to the above conversation, you need to COMMUNICATE and work things out together.
If your boyfriend is a huge comic book nerd and you just don’t see the fun in them, it will be essential to compromise. Show him you love HIM even though you don’t dig Marvel. Be his plus one to Comic-Con. This should go BOTH WAYS.
This means he should be compromising and be okay with listening to your playlists in the car. Making sure to attend events with your friends and family. He should be okay with watching a rom-com with you every so often if you are obsessed with them.
This is the definition of LOVE.
You don’t need to be the same person. You need to show your partner you love and respect their individuality by embracing the things and people they find so friggin’ awesome.
So, don’t fret if you aren’t perfectly compatible in every way. You should only fret if there’s a lack of communication and compromise around those differences.
3. Your friends and family aren’t sold yet
This one is definitely hard. We all want our friends and family to love our partner just as much as we do. Often it takes time for them to fully come around and accept your partner, often depending on your previous history with relationships and the way they perceive how your partner treats you.
This can be solved of course, with communication from all parties.
First, you must communicate with the people you love and let them know that you’re very serious about the man you’re with. Ask for real examples as to why they are unsure of him or why they aren’t 100% sold. Most of the time, they are just looking out for you. This will be increasingly more challenging if you’ve had bad fights or issues before.
Assure that you aren’t calling your friends and family and only dishing all of the bad stuff about your relationship out to them. They don’t need to know about every single argument you’ve ever had. And, if you aren’t calling them about every great thing your partner does and your most intimate moments, they aren’t getting a fair look at your relationship.
If their uncertainty is based on his lack of interest in spending time with your friends and family, then it’s time to have a conversation with your honey.
They must show the people you love the same kind of respect and appreciation that you do, especially if they’ve been nothing but kind and caring towards him. That is an essential issue to tackle.
If your friends and family are still getting to know him and just aren’t sure, then give them time to warm up to one another. Make sure they can spend time talking and create positive environments for everyone to connect. Hello, game nights!
If some of your loved ones aren’t sold on your partner, you need to decide if that’s worth ending your relationship over. Only YOU know the ins and outs of your relationship. If you communicate your feelings with those around you and they still decide they don’t like your boyfriend, then maybe it’s time to ask them to keep their opinions to themselves, especially if you don’t think they’re valid.
If you think you can improve this sticky situation and find a way to navigate it effectively, then put in the work, honey! If you have true love, nothing should stop you from making everyone in your life see the best in one another.