While some men engage in one-sided or unhappy relationships, this experience is more common for women. If you are wondering if you are wasting time with the wrong person, you probably are and need to listen to your instincts. Many women in unhealthy relationships find themselves attracted to a partner who is their opposite or who they aren’t compatible with.
Compatibility is about sharing common values and goals, having fun together, and liking each other. It helps to sustain a couple through hard times. Both chemistry and compatibility are essential to a healthy intimate relationship.
However, if you meet someone who is pleasant and you don’t feel an instant attraction, try not to rule him or her out because the chemistry isn’t strong. On the other hand, if you don’t feel like being close physically after several dates, let him or her know you just want to be friends. This may be hard for the other person to hear, but will save both of you from heartache later on.
Here are 7 signs that you are in an unhealthy relationship:
- You feel uncomfortable with a person and it’s not easy to get close. In other words, you feel that you can’t be yourself and have to walk on eggshells. You feel unsafe in the relationship and unable to express your thoughts, feelings, and desires openly without fear of rejection.
- You don’t feel there’s mutual respect in your relationship. You don’t admire and respect each other for who you are. If you don’t have respect for your partner, it will eat away at chemistry until you have nothing left.
- Your partner fails to keep agreements. He or she doesn’t call or show up when they say they will. Your partner doesn’t appear trustworthy because they aren’t reliable and there’s inconsistency between his or her words and actions.
- He or she doesn’t make time for you on a regular basis. Your partner doesn’t make you a priority or place a high value on your relationship. This includes sending regular texts or phone calls to show that he or she is thinking of you.
- They don’t listen well when you talk or show interest in you by asking questions about your work, hobbies, friends, and family.
- He or she rarely makes plans to do things with you with friends; or fails to include you in his/her inner circle. If something special is going on in their life, he or she doesn’t invite you to celebrate with others.
- Your partner doesn’t talk about your future together. If he or she says they’re not ready for a commitment, take them seriously – they’re just not that into you. Don’t waste your time on a relationship that doesn’t have a future.
Visualizing a Healthy Relationship
It’s important to begin visualizing yourself in a healthy relationship before you can embark on one. Consider making a vision board where you can post quotes, messages, and photos of the type of person or relationship that you aspire to have or be with. Check it on a regular basis and see if your prospects match up to the type of person who is a good fit for you. You don’t have to settle for less than you deserve in a relationship.
Karen, an outgoing 39- year-old single mom, reflects on a troubling pattern she’s noticed in her intimate relationships. She reflects, “I always tend to go for guys who are emotionally distant. I think it’s because I’m afraid of commitment. I’ve been hurt many times and I mistrust my partners due to being left suddenly by my ex.”
Karen met Brian on the rebound – less than a year after her ex-husband moved out. She tends to get into relationships quickly and then get cold feet. Since her divorce two years, she has a tendency to pick guys who avoid commitment or who are distant and then wonders why things don’t work out.
In the beginning, Brian came on strong – inviting Karen to romantic dinners and showing affection. But over the past month, he doesn’t always return her text or phone messages and they rarely go out for dinner or to an activity. Karen feels unsure what to make of Brian’s inconsistent behavior and is feeling mistrustful and is tempted to scan his cell phone when he isn’t watching. She questions if something is wrong with her rather than questioning whether the relationship is right for her.
There is recent evidence that the secret to a happy, lasting relationship is friendship. Look for qualities you admire in your partner and remind yourself of these admirable qualities regularly.
When it comes to matters of the heart, where admiration and respect are found, love will be sustained. But where these things are absent, love will die. Finding a partner who likes and respects you as much as you do him or her will give you the best chance of finding lasting love.
Follow Terry Gaspard on Facebook, Twitter, and movingpastdivorce.com where you can order her book Daughters of Divorce: Overcome the Legacy of Your Parents’ Breakup and Enjoy A Happy, Long-lasting Relationship.