I Thought I Was Ready To Commit But I Wasn’t — These Were The 12 Signs

I always thought I was the type of person who wanted to commit to a partner at the drop of a hat, but it turned out in my last relationship, I actually wasn’t looking for that. It was because deep down I didn’t really want to be with my partner. Here are 12 signs that I wasn’t looking for commitment that I tried to ignore for way too long.

  1. I wanted to move really slowly. Slower than a snail, in fact. I really liked the guy I was dating but I didn’t want to rush through the relationship. He didn’t either, which was good, but he didn’t want to move super slowly either. I was quite happy to maintain the same slow pace for months. That should’ve told me something was wrong because I was stalling.
  2. I chose an unavailable man. I thought he was the problem because he could be emotionally detached at times, but the truth is that I had chosen him for a reason! A closer look into my behavior showed me that I was doing the same thing.
  3. I felt nothing. When he told me he loved me, I should’ve been over the moon, but I felt nothing. It was like I was a zombie on the inside. What was wrong with me?
  4. My heart started going into overdrive. I’d feel anxious around him when he spoke about going on holiday together during the festive season or starting a new life as a married couple. I’d never experienced that before and it was my body trying to tell me to get out because I was with the wrong guy. I just didn’t want to see it.
  5. I needed lots of space. I kept worrying that my relationship was preventing me from doing other things in my life like achieving my goals. That’s crazy, I know, but it became a really serious issue that weighed down on me and made me want more and more space away from my partner. It was never enough! Essentially, I was slowly crawling away from the relationship.
  6. I thought about my ex. I wasn’t thinking about him in a romantic way and I certainly didn’t want to get back together with him. But, he did come to mind a lot. I’d think of all the toxic things he did and then worry that my current boyfriend was going to do the same things to me. It definitely held me back from being able to commit to him whole-heartedly.
  7. I became super critical. I started to find flaws with my partner all the time. I’d get upset with him over the smallest things. It was ridiculous, yes, but I wasn’t crazy. Looking back, I realize that I just wanted to push him away so that I wouldn’t have to break up with him.
  8. I had a perfect relationship in my head. I’d been too focused on trying to have the most perfect relationship ever. I used to daydream about it a lot. But when my boyfriend came along, instead of seeing what was good about him and our relationship, I was holding onto this perfect ideal in my head. It was messing with me. I could never achieve it, which made me want to run from real-life relationships.
  9. I feared being trapped. Even though I had strong feelings for the guy I was dating, I feared being stuck much more. I didn’t like the idea of “settling down.” Back then, in my mind that only meant one thing: I would be handcuffed to someone for the rest of my life. Yeah, it’s dramatic, but it was how I felt.
  10. I didn’t like the idea of compromising. It sounds unreasonable and it was, but it made sense to me at the time. I didn’t want to compromise with the person I was dating. Every little compromise felt like giving away another tiny piece of myself. I feared that someday there’d be nothing left. I was pretty inflexible, but it was probably linked to how I wanted to push people away so that I wouldn’t have to commit.
  11. I stayed in horrible relationships. It doesn’t seem to make sense. Surely if I were afraid to commit to someone, a bad relationship would’ve made me bolt the minute things went south? But actually no, the opposite thing happened. I held onto bad relationships out of guilt, thinking that I had to make them work. This was also linked to my fear of abandonment that dominated me in my 20s. I’d push people away or I’d hold onto them for dear life. There was no in-between.
  12. I became a workaholic. I wanted to spend most of my time at work. Work was safe because I knew what was expected of me and whether or not I succeeded was largely up to me, no one else. But with relationships, I felt out of control and helpless. I hated those feelings, so I tried to avoid love. The sad thing is that I ended up missing out on all the good stuff it could give me.
Giulia Simolo is a writer from Johannesburg, South Africa with a degree in English Language and Literature. She has been working as a journalist for more than a decade, writing for sites including AskMen, Native Interiors, and Live Eco. You can find out more about her on Facebook and LinkedIn, or follow her on Twitter @GiuliaSimolo.