Sometimes, even the most promising relationships don’t last. Perhaps that spark has begun to fizzle, or maybe you’re just not that compatible as a couple anymore. Whatever the case, it can be tricky knowing when to make the call.
Are you looking for signs your relationship is over? Or wondering at what point in your relationship should you break up? If so, our guide can help.
So, when is it time to break up? While every relationship is different, there are some tell-tale signs it’s time to break up or take a break. Check out our list below for help deciding if your relationship has run its course.
- You’re Not Feeling Like the Best Version of Yourself
Take a long hard look at yourself—are you proud of what you see? Are you taking care of yourself and treating yourself with respect? Your partner should bring out the best in you, complimenting, encouraging, and supporting you along the way. If you’re not feeling like the best version of yourself in this relationship, then it might be time to break up.
- You Can’t Effectively Communicate with Eachother
When you aren’t comfortable being open with your partner or feel like you’re always talking to a brick wall, you’re experiencing a breakdown in communication. And if you can’t talk about the little things now, how are you going to address the big things down the road? Good communication is the backbone of every healthy relationship, and without it, your relationship may not stand the test of time.
- You Feel Obligated to Stay in the Relationship
Being in a relationship is a choice—not an obligation! If you’re worried about hurting your partner’s feelings, being alone, or losing a friendship with your partner’s mom, these are all signs of staying out of obligation. No amount of guilt should prevent you from leaving a relationship that doesn’t bring you joy.
- You’re the One Keeping the Relationship Afloat
Does it feel like you’re the only one making an effort in the relationship? Maybe you’re always the one to plan date night, initiate conversation, and make romantic gestures. A one-sided relationship lacks balance and can lead to feelings of frustration and resentment. It takes two to tango, and if your partner isn’t pulling their weight, your relationship may be fizzling out.
- Your Partner Isn’t Meeting Your Needs
In the same vein as having a one-sided relationship, not having your needs met is another possible sign it’s time to break up or take a break. Think about your relationship and how it makes you feel. Are you feeling loved and supported? Does your partner listen to and respect you? And is your partner accommodating your needs inside and outside of the bedroom? If your wants and needs fall on deaf ears, moving on might be best.
- You’re No Longer Happy
You should never compromise your happiness for the sake of your relationship. After all, your relationship should contribute to your state of happiness—not diminish it. If you can’t remember the last time you laughed out loud, felt good about yourself, or looked forward to something, then you may want to question whether your relationship is the culprit of your unhappiness.
- You’re Constantly Fighting
Is your partner always picking arguments with you? Are you constantly bickering? Or do you find yourself contradicting everything your partner says or does? If so, these may be signs of bigger relationship problems. Sure, every couple has its tiffs, but if you’re always at each other’s throats, it might be time to sunset your relationship.
- There’s No Trust
You’ve probably heard the saying, “Trust is hard to earn and easy to lose,” and there are no truer words when you experience a violation of trust in your relationship. A lack of trust can lead to all sorts of issues in your relationship as you begin to doubt each other, question the truth, and suspect the worst. While there are ways of overcoming it, if your partner repeatedly breaks your trust, then it’s a sure sign it’s time to break up.
- There are Signs of Abuse
Physical abuse isn’t the only kind of abuse you can experience in a relationship. Emotional and verbal abuse are also common, so it’s important to recognize the signs and cycles of abuse. If you experience any kind of abuse at the hands of your partner, remove yourself from the relationship. Reach out to your friends and family for support, and consider receiving professional help.
- You Feel Stuck in the Relationship
You have a major relationship problem if you’re feeling stuck, trapped, or forced to stay with your partner against your will. If this is the case, it’s time to move on. You always have the choice to remove yourself from the situation, but if you’re scared or fear for your safety, contact your friends, family, or even the police for help getting out of the relationship.
- You Don’t Have the Same Values
Yes, compromise is a big part of any relationship, but there may be some make-or-break issues that you just can’t get past. For example, maybe you desperately want a baby while your partner doesn’t want kids. Or, perhaps you’re polar opposites when it comes to your political beliefs, representing major differences in your core values. If you can’t find a middle ground, this gap in your belief systems may make it difficult to move forward, and breaking up might be the best solution.
- You’re No Longer Intimate
Stress and life changes can contribute to a lack of intimacy in relationships, but there’s a lot you can do to remedy it. However, if you and/or your partner have no desire to be intimate with each other—or even an interest in working on your intimacy—it could be a sign your relationship is already over, and it’s time to break up.
- You Don’t See a Future Together
Close your eyes and imagine the next two weeks, six months, or 10 years. Do you see your partner by your side through all the highs and lows? If you don’t picture them as a constant in your life, you may want to be honest with yourself (and them) about your relationship expectations. If they want to go the distance, while you’re only in it for the short term, it might be time to cut ties.
- You’re No Longer Making an Effort
Every relationship requires effort, whether that’s surprising your partner with their favorite cookies just because or leaving them a thoughtful voicemail on the way to work. Sure, you both probably made bigger gestures and more effort in the early stages of your relationship, but just because you’ve settled into a routine doesn’t mean you should stop trying. Think about whether you even want to make more of an effort—if not, then you have your answer.
- Breaking up is Always on Your Mind
Are you constantly debating whether to stay in your relationship? Or does the thought of breaking up give you a sense of relief? If you’re always questioning your relationship status, your subconscious may have already made the decision for you.
If any of these signs ring true for you and your relationship, breaking up might be the best course of action. While it’s never easy ending a relationship, sometimes moving on is the best option for you both.