There are books, movies, blogs, social media accounts, and TV shows devoted to the phenomenon of relationships. While this article could digress into the pitfalls of finding your true love on reality TV, instead, it is going to focus on the 5 signs that it is time to make a change in your relationships (read: leave the relationship or have a heart-to-heart with your significant other).

  1. Pain Over Joy
    Relationships are hard work. Ask anyone that has been married or in a committed relationship for any time. This means there will be good and bad times. However, if you are consistently experiencing pain or hurt instead of joy or happiness, you need to have an honest conversation with yourself on why you are experiencing these feelings and what you want to do about it.
  2. Change Expectation
    The expectation of change can be a two-way street. If you are always expecting your partner to be different or vis versa, then you need to stop and think if that’s ever going to happen. People do change in little and big ways, but a relationship is about supporting someone through the change he/she wants to make, not the change you are expecting them to make. If you can’t be happy together exactly as you are, it’s time to reconsider your commitment.
  3. When You Justify
    If you are regularly justifying your partner’s actions or behavior, stop and ask if you should be. Are they acting in a way towards you that makes you uncomfortable or unhappy? You should not have to justify another person’s actions toward yourself on a regular basis. Ever!
  4. You’re Hurting
    If you are being hurt in any way on a regular basis, you should consider leaving. This includes but is not limited to physical, mental, verbal, or financial hurt/abuse. No one deserves that, and it will never stop, no matter how many times they promise it will.
  5. Same Old, Same Old
    If you and your partner are regularly rehashing the same issues or finding yourself in the same situation, then it is time to be honest with yourself and them. Maybe it is an issue you can work together to overcome and move past, or perhaps you are tired of your partner continually placing you in the same situation.

Relationships are challenging, but that does not mean that you should ignore the signs that are staring you in the face. When you are with the right person, you will experience more joy than sadness. If you can relate to one or more of these signs, consider having a conversation with your partner.