Are you ignoring the warning signs?

We all have our doubts about the person we are dating and wonder whether we are really in a healthy relationship. Unfortunately, when we are newly coupled up we are quick to write off any flaws we detect in the person we are with. One major reason why we look the other way and stay in bad relationships is because we are afraid of being alone. We worry we might not find somebody else if we let this one go.

However, it is better you are alone than with someone who mistreats you. By staying in an unhealthy relationship, you not only jeopardize your own emotional and physical well-being, but also jeopardize the well-being of other people like family members and different aspects of your life like work and school.

Sometimes all you need is someone to point out the clear signs you are in a bad relationship for you to see it. A healthy relationship improves your life; an unhealthy one makes you miserable. Watch out for these warning signs you are with the wrong person.

1. They are trying to change you into an entirely different person.

If your partner is bent on molding you into an entirely different person and you constantly feel the pressure to wear a mask so as to impress him, watch out. Your partner should love you unconditionally for who you are. After all, it’s much easier, healthier and fun to build a healthy relationship when you are yourself in the relationship than when you are not yourself.

2. They think the world revolves around them.

If your partner’s actions and words scream, “Me, Me, Me!” something is wrong. Narcissistic tendencies in a relationship are a big No-No. You should be with someone who appreciates your needs in the relationship just as much as (if not more than) their own. Let her go if, despite your many attempts to let her know the world doesn’t revolve around her, she still thinks she is the center of the universe. Don’t try to fit in her world; work towards building a new world together. If that doesn’t work, it’s probably time to move on.

3. They avoid those tough (but necessary) conversations.

Communication is vital in any relationship. If your partner doges or blatantly refuses to discuss important issues in the relationship as the weeks, months and years go on, seriously consider whether it is worth staying in the relationship. For example, if you want to have children but your partner doesn’t and she consistently refuses to discuss the topic, she might not be right for you. Have open discussions on issues and reach amicable solutions. If you can’t communicate openly and reach amicable solutions on important issues, just leave. You are better off without a life time of misery and frustration in the relationship.

4. They don’t really listen to you.

Steve Covey observed that, “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” If the person you are dating is always the one speaking, they cut you short and never really listen to what you have to say, that is not a good sign. Healthy relationships are built on healthy communication. That means respect and appreciation of your partner’s point of view and opinions. If you feel like you have no voice or say in the relationship, it’s time to get help or walk away.

5. They have no hobbies or interests outside of your relationship.

If your partner has no hobbies and interests outside your relationship, it suggests their life is not well balanced. A lack of hobbies and interests outside of a relationship points to a lack of passion, ambition and/or vision in life. Tread carefully with someone who lacks passion and ambition in life. Relationships with people who have no passion and ambition are anything but fulfilling. Besides, it is terribly unwise and unhealthy to expect one person to be your sole source of happiness.

6. They are clingy and controlling.

If your partner is clingy and controlling such that you find yourself isolated from loved ones, be very concerned. You are not a robot to be controlled 24/7 by someone else. You are a human being with a brain and feelings of your own. Pay attention especially when your friends and family tell you that you are no longer the person you once were. They likely see something that you don’t have the distance and objectivity to see on your own. Remember healthy relationships are about mutual love and understanding between two partners; not control and domination by one partner.

7. They are abusive.

If your partner hits you and/or verbally insults you, run for the hills. Even if your partner doesn’t actually hit you but simply threatens physical abuse and you genuinely feel unsafe and insecure, leave immediately and get help. Threats of physical violence are themselves emotional abuse and tend to metamorphosis into physical abuse. Also, watch how your partner treats other people, pets and animals. If he abuses and treats them badly, that is a sign that you might be dating the wrong person.

8. They dislike (or even hate) your friends and/or family.

If your partner disrespects your own family and is not civil with any of your friends, something is definitely wrong. Even if your relationship with your family is not cordial, your partner should at least be civil with them. Your family and close friends have loved you longer than your partner and have played a part in making you the person that you are. They deserve some respect. If your partner doesn’t respect them, they obviously don’t respect you too. Also be aware that if you never grow to like their friends and family it may be a sign you are just not meant to be together.

9. They constantly lie, cheat and/or deceive.

Lies, deception and cheating come in different forms, including sexual and emotional indiscretion. If your partner’s every word, for example, is laced with lies and half truths (even when speaking about simple things as what they’ve been up to the whole day) or they are keeping secrets about an illicit affair they have with someone else, that is a clear sign they are not right for you. You are better off investing your time and love in someone else.

10. They regard sex as the answer to everything in the relationship. 

If your partner demands sex as the answer to everything in the relationship, watch out. Sex is an important bonding factor in any relationship, but it should not be made the driving force of the relationship. That means sex is not the answer for not spending time together, nor is sex the answer for all disagreements. When you make sex the solution for everything in the relationship, you are only sweeping things under the carpet and opening room for misunderstanding. That cannot be a good sign.

11. It just doesn’t feel right.

Sometimes you just feel it in your heart that something is not right with that person. You might not be able to pinpoint what it is exactly that is wrong, but you just know something is not right. Maybe you are normally happy and bubbly, but you feel your light dimmed when you are with that person. Whatever it may be, listen to your gut feeling and do what needs to be done. Ending an unhealthy relationship is difficult, but it could be the best decision you ever make for your own happiness.