No matter how handsome, sweet and fun he is, if you feel like your happiness is more of an act than a natural response, he’s likely not your best fit. Here are a few subtle yet serious signs that your boyfriend might secretly be making you feel miserable and that you might need to cut this courtship short:
- He tunes out when you discuss your day. When you talk to him on the phone, you get a lot of “Uh huhs” and “Hmms,” and when you bring up important details from that call later on, he always acts like it’s brand new information. Long story short, he’s just not listening to you. And while everyone gets distracted every once in a while, it’ll really wear down on you as time goes on. It’s not cool to constantly feel unimportant when you’re only trying to be heard.
- He apologizes verbally but never changes his actions. You think you’ve got this communication thing under control — if a problem arises, you can tell him about it and he’ll apologize without any sort of fight happening. Good news, right? Not really. Apologies are just words. If he doesn’t do anything to actually change, he’ll continue getting away with doing whatever is bothering you, and your frustration and sadness will continue to build.
- Even when you’re together, you still feel alone. You spend a ton of time together, but… not really. You’re both in the same room, but distracted by cell phones. If you suggest going out to get some fresh air, or take a walk, you get a “maybe in a bit” response. And, that’s the end of the chat. Even if he’s looking up world news or important work stuff, if he constantly prioritizes that over you, you’re not going to be in a happy relationship.
- You tiptoe around big issues because he’s sensitive. He’s the kind of guy who sees all criticism as a personal attack. You’ve figured that maybe his past girlfriends may have used this method to start fights and drama, and maybe with time, he’ll realize you’re not that kind of girl. (You just want him to pitch in and make the bed every once in a while.) But because of this, you have a ton of resentment building up, and you can’t look at your unmade bed without filling up with rage. It’s sweet that you care about his feelings, but it seems like he doesn’t put that much effort into yours. This is red flag behavior.
- You like seeing him, but you never get excited about it. If he’s away for awhile, you kinda-sorta miss him. But, you’re also thrilled to have a guy-free weekend (and bummed when that weekend is over.) Typically if he makes plans, they’re somewhat equivalent to that of a family party — it’ll be nice to go, but hanging out with Aunt Iris for Christmas isn’t anything you count down the days for.
- He’s really frugal with his finances, but not yours. When you’re dating, expenses are typically split evenly. While it’s nice to be taken out to dinner (or treat him to dinner) you feel like this agreement isn’t really equal. It seems like when it’s your night to pay, it’s dinner and drinks. When it’s his, he’ll chip in for a piece of pizza at the mall food court. You feel like he’s totally taking advantage of you, and if you bring it up, fear he might spin it around and ask you why it’s important — or worse, joke that you’re a gold digger.
- You just can’t feel comfortable at his place. He invites you over, but after a few visits, you still feel uncomfortable grabbing a soda from the fridge without asking first. Something about his apartment is just not guest-friendly, and you can’t really figure out why. Every time he invites you over, you develop a weird sense of dread, since you know it’ll be a lot of sitting around awkwardly, watching him play video games.
- He constantly drags you to events you hate, but refuses to attend any of your important events. If a movie comes out that he wants to see, you gladly accompany him so that he doesn’t have to go alone. But if it’s a Judd Apatow comedy, he sighs and tells you that you should just go with your friends. Relationships are all about sacrifices, and if he never spends time doing what you want to do, you’re going to end up pretty damn miserable.