Relationships can be complicated (they don’t put that as a status update on Facebook for nothing). That said, sometimes your significant other might do things to annoy or upset you—not taking the trash out after you told them to or forgetting to snake the drain of shower hair—but this doesn’t necessarily mean the be all end all of your relationship.
However, if you’re finding your unhappy more than you are happy, and they’re saying things to you that you know are unhealthy, you might need to acknowledge what’s going on. Here are some red flags that your relationship might be on the fritz, and that you need to make some moves to get out.
There’s a noticeable lack of communication.
Giving the cold shoulder a few times is okay. But finding it really hard to talk openly about how you feel? Maybe when you do talk, it’s hard to get through to the other person? Perhaps you’re feeling distanced from your partner? All of these are huge red flags in a relationship.
This could be in any sense of the word. They might demand to see your phone or they may demand that you give them a massage. If your partner is constantly making any kind of ruthless demands and won’t take no for an answer, then you’re not getting to do anything for yourself, and that’s a big issue. Your phone is private and what you want to do with your day are completely up to you.
There’s a lack of trust.
Have they lied to you before and it’s hard to trust anything they say now? Have they cheated in the past and you’re finding it hard to let them go out on their own? Maybe they’re the ones always questioning your motives. Whoever isn’t trusting who, a lack of trust is one way to make both parties feel miserable.
They make you feel like you’re not smart.
Do you find your spouse is always mocking you or saying you’ll never accomplish your ‘dumb’ ideas? Ever leave a conversation with your partner feeling upset that they just ridiculed everything you said? You should never be with someone who makes you feel like you’re not worthy, especially the person you’re in a relationship with.
Your goals aren’t aligning.
They’re up all night watching TV and you’re getting up at 6 a.m. for your double shift at the office—something isn’t right here. It’s important to be aware of each other’s goals, and if they don’t even remotely align, it’ll be hard to live happily together. Talk with your significant other about what they want out of the relationship in the next five or 10 years—and from themselves as well.
They guilt trip you.
“How could you not have ironed my shirt?” or “I can’t believe you forgot my favorite chips at the store”—these are just a few examples of how your partner might be making you feel guilty. If this happens on the regular, it might be time to reevaluate the relationship.
This one should go without saying, but if your partner is engaging in any kind of abusive behavior, get out of the relationship. “Any form of abuse, from the seemingly mild to the overtly obvious—verbal, emotional, psychological, and certainly physical—is not just a red flag but a huge banner telling you to get out immediately and never look back,” says Abigail Brenner, MD, a psychiatrist in New York.
Have you ever been in a bad relationship before? What did you do to salvage it, or how did you finally get up the courage to walk away?