I Ended My Comfortable Relationship To Find Love—And You Should Too

When I ended my last relationship, people were shocked. “But you seemed so happy together!” they’d say, as if I was crazy. In reality, though, I wasn’t happy and I hadn’t been for a while—I was comfortable, and there’s a big difference. Here’s why I ended that comfortable relationship to find love (and maybe you should too):

  1. When you’ve been in a relationship for a few years, romance becomes a habit. When I first got together with my ex, everything was exciting. There were first kisses, dates, and weekends away to look forward to. We wanted to meet each other’s friends and families and spend as much time together as possible. A few years into our relationship, though, we’d stopped surprising each other. On a typical weekend, we’d watch TV companionably or make dinner together—everything was fine, but nothing was extraordinary.
  2. You stop trying to please each other. My ex was one of the kindest guys I’ve ever met, but in a way that made it harder for him to treat me like I was special. We were acting like friends with benefits: we got on well together and had a pretty good sex life but we never had that deeper connection that makes a relationship so special.
  3. Just because we weren’t fighting constantly doesn’t mean it was the perfect relationship. Why do we always have to look for a reason to break up? Okay, if you’re fighting all the time or if he’s cheated, that’s a pretty obvious cue to end things. Sometimes, though, a gut feeling is all it takes to tell you something isn’t quite right. No matter how often I listed my ex’s amazing qualities in my head, I couldn’t shake the feeling that this wasn’t “it.” Despite all the evidence showing me how amazing he was, I knew it wasn’t right.
  4. We never truly “got” each other. My ex and I made each other laugh but I never felt that we had a deeper connection. We’d talk about what was happening in our day or what we were up to at the weekend but we missed out on those late night heart to hearts that make being in a relationship so special. We never really got what was important to the other person and our relationship suffered as a result.
  5. I wanted old-fashioned butterflies. I’m still in my early 20s, so it’s way too early even to think about settling in love. I want to experience that jolt in my stomach when I see my boyfriend—being happy to see him just doesn’t cut it. It might sound like I’m asking too much, but if things are getting samey now, how are we going to feel about each other down the line? Probably indifferent at best.
  6. We both deserve better. Because I wasn’t completely happy in my relationship, I wasn’t the best girlfriend. My ex deserves someone that hangs onto his every word and thinks he’s the best thing since sliced bread as much as I deserve a man that I’m crazy about. In our lukewarm relationship, neither of us was as happy as we could have been.
  7. He was the perfect boyfriend—but not for me. The hardest thing about breaking up with my ex was that to the outside eye, he was the perfect boyfriend. He’d always make time for our relationship, got on well with my friends and family and was ready to commit. It sounds brutal to say it, but if my dream guy had offered me all that, I’d have jumped at the chance. Breaking up with my ex means that someone else is going to get their ideal man, while I can get back to looking for The One.
  8. I wanted to see what was out there. When you’re in a relationship, you’re forced into having tunnel vision. If your eyes wander to someone else or even if you catch yourself imagining dating other guys, you feel unbelievably guilty. I needed the freedom to see who else was out there without undermining my relationship. To do that, I had to end it.
  9. You can’t be in a relationship half-heartedly. Being on your own is scary, but being in a relationship that you don’t really care about is worse. It’s a waste of both of your time to spend hours together when you could be out meeting new people you might really click with. If I’m not prepared to give 100 percent to a relationship, it’s a sign that I don’t want to be in it.
  10. Now I know what I’m looking for. My ex has shown me how a guy should treat a girl. He was caring, attentive and committed. I know what to expect from boyfriend material and the kind of treatment I deserve. I also know, though, that I won’t be happy settling for anything less than love. The next time I get into a serious relationship, comfortable isn’t going to cut it.
Isobel is a freelance blogger and writer for hire specialising in content for millennials who haven't quite got it together yet (i.e. herself). When not glued to her laptop, she enjoys eating cheese, doing yoga and spending time with family and friends.