There’s nothing harder than trying to cling onto a relationship that’s completely out of gas. Sometimes two people can love each other but lose that romantic spark. However, relationships, especially in the early stages, shouldn’t be boring. If you think that yours is on a path to nowhere, here are some signs of a dying relationship to know for sure — along with strategies on how to fix things.
- You haven’t been on a date in months. Yes, going out can get repetitive sometimes and yes, the pandemic put a wrench in a lot of people’s plans. Some of the restaurants you might have taken your boyfriend or girlfriend to might not even exist anymore. It’s been a stressful few years, but dates don’t need to be elaborate. All you need to do is find a way to spend some time together. Try to make Friday nights your movie night and take turns picking what to watch on HBOMax. Or, just go out for a coffee and some good conversation.
- Someone asked you how your significant other is doing, and your response was, “Good, I think?” When you reach this point, you realize you haven’t actually caught up with your boyfriend or girlfriend in a long time. You don’t know how work has been or what’s new with the family. This is a bad sign. It shows the two of you haven’t even made time for each other to ask basic questions. Luckily, you can rehab this by calling them up and inviting them over to get the full scoop. Make sure you apologize for being a bit distant.
- Your partner has taken on a lot of new hobbies that don’t pertain to you. It’s very healthy and normal to have hobbies that differ from your partner. But if they continuously take on new activities that don’t involve you — or that involve them being away most weekends — it’s a sign that they may be slowly pushing you out. If you want to save the relationship, try finding a way to be included. Do they like camping? Then, maybe ask if you can tag along one day to see what it’s like.
- You’re starting to notice yourself become attracted to other people. Attraction is normal. But, when we’re in healthy relationships, we don’t often entertain the idea of being with someone else. If your relationship is starting to die, you might realize that your attraction to others is leading you down paths you haven’t been down before. Instead of an, “Oh, they’re cute,” you start wondering what would happen if you approached them. Or maybe, you might find yourself adjusting your schedule so that you can interact with someone else more than normal. If you really want to be with your partner, now’s the time to make things right and maybe plan a trip or vacation. If not, now’s the time to break up so that you don’t end up cheating or crossing any lines.
- The both of you start to have different political views. The world seems very split right now. And if your partner starts to indicate that their beliefs are changing, that can take a huge toll on the relationship. The truth of the matter is, these issues may lead to a major compatibility issue down the road. If you’re not on the same side and feel nervous when heavy topics come up in person, you probably grew apart. In this scenario, it might be best to break up.
- Your partner tells you that they’re starting to feel ignored or neglected. It’s not your job to constantly cater to your partner, but it’s important to pay attention if they’re feeling a little neglected. Sometimes, work obligations take up a lot of time. Or, perhaps there’s a lot of family drama that’s taken your attention away. This conversation is them telling you that things seem bad on their end. If you don’t try and fix it now, or at least take it seriously, then you can expect a breakup in the future.
- You start feeling down on yourself. This happens to everyone. It could be hormones or just a bad week. Or, maybe you’re feeling a little regret over eating pizza for dinner last night. If the feeling doesn’t go away after a few days, it’s possible you’re just not being fulfilled in your relationship. Maybe your partner is subtly making you feel bad about yourself. It’s not just about compliments. Good partners just naturally make their significant others feel at their best.
- It seems like you’ve just run out of things to talk about with your partner. Silence can be nice, but if it’s a constantly awkward silence, that’s a big sign of a dying relationship. Try to liven things up with some ice breakers. Think up fun topics that can launch a full conversation. Maybe, “what was the first movie you saw in theaters?” Or, “What was your dream career when you were in high school?” Have a good time with it. You might uncover something about your boyfriend or girlfriend that you’ve never realized before.