Ending a relationship can be one of the most difficult decisions to make. It is tough when you have invested time, energy, and emotions into a potential partner. However, staying in a toxic or unhealthy relationship can cause more harm than good in the long run. That’s why it’s essential to recognize the signs when to walk away from a relationship. Staying in an unhealthy relationship and hoping for positive change is not a good strategy.
If every conversation turns into an argument and there’s no resolution, it may be a sign that the relationship is not working. You should be able to have your own opinions and ideas without being disrespected.
Lack of Trust
Trust is the foundation of any healthy relationship. If there is constant suspicion and lack of trust between partners, it can be hard to maintain a healthy relationship. Lack of trust affects finances, parenting, sexual commitments and long-term couple goals. If you can’t fully trust this person, it’s time to walk away.
Lack of Communication
Communication is key in any relationship. If you and your partner have trouble communicating effectively or avoid having difficult conversations, it may be time to reassess the relationship. Feeling like your ideas and opinions are dismissed or made fun of is not a healthy foundation.
Any form of disrespect, whether it’s verbal or physical, is unacceptable in a healthy relationship. Passive aggressive teasing, subtle attempts to control or manipulate, or aggressive conflict are all red flags.
Constructive feedback is important in a relationship, but constant criticism can tear down self-esteem and lead to resentment towards your partner. If you feel that you can’t safely share your ideas or dreams with your partner, there is a problem.
If your partner exhibits controlling behavior by dictating what you wear, who you see, or how you spend your time, it can be a red flag for an unhealthy relationship. Most attempts at controlling a partner come from a core of fear, but not all people can admit they are struggling with fear.
Loss of Individuality
In a healthy relationship, partners support each other’s interests and allow each other space to pursue their own hobbies. If you feel like you have lost your sense of self in the relationship, it may be time to reassess.
Lack of Effort
Relationships require effort from both parties. If one partner is constantly making excuses or not putting in any effort, it can lead to an imbalance and resentment. Partners that make excuses about their lack of effort might need more time to grow up into an adult.
Different Values and Goals
Partners should share similar values and have common goals for the future. If there is a constant clash in these areas, it may be difficult to sustain a healthy relationship. Your choice of spouse will affect your financial goals, how you parent your kids, how you prepare for future goals, and frankly, most of the rest of your life decisions. If you are feeling uncertain or are seeing red flags, it’s time to walkaway.
Healthy relationships are not about competing with each other. If your partner always has to be right or one-up you, it can create a toxic dynamic in the relationship. Walk away from any relationship that has a winner-and-loser dynamic.
Put Downs and Insults
No one should tolerate being put down or insulted by their partner. This type of behavior is emotionally abusive and can cause long-term damage. Research shows that most teasing is based on unexpressed anger or other negative emotions. Don’t be a verbal dartboard.
Lack of Support
In a healthy relationship, partners support each other’s dreams and goals. If your partner constantly puts you down or doesn’t encourage you to pursue your passions, it may be time to reassess the relationship.
Unhealthy Coping Mechanisms
If your partner turns to unhealthy behaviors such as substance abuse or anger outbursts to cope with stress, it can negatively impact the relationship. Addictive behavior of any type is a red flag; don’t make excuses for their choices.
Feeling Drained or Unhappy
Ultimately, if you feel exhausted, drained, and unhappy in the relationship more often than not, it may be a sign that it’s time to walk away. Remember, the only person you can change is yourself, and it might be time to leave.
Ending a relationship is never easy, but it’s important to remember that you deserve to be in a healthy and fulfilling partnership. By recognizing the signs and taking the necessary steps, you can leave an unhealthy relationship and move towards a happier future. Overall, trust your instincts and prioritize your well-being when deciding whether it’s time to walk away from a relationship.
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This article written and syndicated by Midlife is Magical.
Melane Ann is a writer, blogger, and life coach. In 2020, she turned her experience in midlife divorce and creating a new life for herself into midlifeismagical. With a master's in Marriage and Family Therapy, Melane focuses on helping women over 50 navigate their relationships and commit to healthy aging. She and her new husband share 7 children between them. Melane jokes that she has a black belt in blended families! In addition to her writing, Melane works virtually with her coaching clients from her home office.