Learning to identify the signs of a bad relationship will keep you from getting into an abusive relationship and will help you navigate dating safely.
Are you in an unhealthy relationship? How do you spot the signs of a bad relationship?
More likely than not, if you are in a bad relationship, you already have the gut feeling that you are in one. The problem is …
“It can be very hard to end a love relationship, even when you know it is bad for you.” ~ Howard M. Halpern, How to Break Your Addiction to a Person
I will be writing more articles to help you end a bad relationship, but this one is written to help you identify the signs of a bad relationship and to confirm if indeed you are in one.
1. The relationship is dead end.
The relationship is dead end if it does not lead anywhere. It does not progress. It feels as if you reached the end of the road and there´s no way to go but back.
For example, you may be in a relationship with a man for five years but you aren´t seeing signs that he will propose anytime soon, or he may have told you in several occasions that marriage is not in his vocabulary. So what gives?
A dead end relationship is easy to identify — it´s over. There´s just no hope for it, he doesn´t love you and you don´t know any more if you still love him. In fact, you can´t remember why you´re in that relationship and you don´t even know why you´re still there.
I have a friend, she´s from Dominican Republic. She married a German who´s several years her senior. Things weren´t too bad in the beginning, but after a year of living together they started sleeping in different rooms, and fast forward three years later things are still like that. They´re not a married couple, they´re boardmates.
The husband never says “I love you” to her, never buys anything for her or treats her to dinner, never travels with her, never visits her family even if he always travels back and forth to her home country, and she´s never allowed to accept visitors to their house. Her husband tells her that if she wants visitors, she should get her own place.
She has to work hard to pay for her every need because the only thing that her husband provides for her is a place to sleep.
That´s a very dead end marriage. (She stayed for two more years until her husband asked for a divorce.)
If you know that your relationship isn´t growing (it doesn´t have to be marriage), you´re unhappy and you can´t be who you are, it´s dead end.
2. You are attached to a person who is unattainable.
A man who is unattainable does not value intimacy with you as much as you do. He is unable to open up to you. He is unable to show affection to you.
When you become attached to a person who does not care about you, you become addicted and you make yourself believe your self-made lies (he´s scared, he´s confused, he needs time, etc.).
Are you attached to men who are committed to someone else? Are you dating a guy with a girlfriend who only meets up with you if he´s able to sneak away from his fiancée? Are you dating a man who´s married and whose wife and children will always be his priority?
How about men who don´t want to commit? They are the second type of unattainable people who are seriously a waste of time. I had a co-teacher, she´s a single parent and the father of her child is a perfect example of a man who never wants to commit.
When she got pregnant, they lived together. But there were never talks of marriage, the guy made it clear that he doesn´t believe in marriage. He provided for her and her son´s needs, but she could not question him whenever he comes home late or if he disappears during the weekend. She could not even ask where´s the rest of his salary.
Whenever she attempted to question, the guy would tell her, “Aren´t your needs provided?” After years of waiting and hoping, eventually she packed up, took her son and left.
The third type of unattainable men are those incapable of a relationship. Typically this kind of men are easy to spot—they still haven´t figured their lives, still depend on their parents, still immature, ego-centric and unable to handle responsibilities. They´d rather sit whole day and play video games.
Or, they may have a relatively okay career but they can´t decide for a thing without getting their mom´s approval.
A man who´s committed to someone else, who don´t want a committed relationship with you, or who is not capable of having and handling a relationship are painfully unattainable men. If you force a relationship with them, what you´ll get is an unhealthy, bad relationship.
3. The relationship is mismatched.
I once had an affair with a man who had a girlfriend. In fact, he was engaged. I fell for him after he persistently pursued me. I accepted his love AFTER he broke his engagement with his girlfriend. I asked him why he was doing it? Why was he risking everything? He said because his relationship with her was a mismatch. He´s highly intellectual (yes girl, he really is brainy) while his girlfriend was only interested with makeup.
He found me to be an intellectual match. But not only that, he also admired my daredevil, adventurous spirit. He loved outdoor adventures like I do, something he couldn´t share with his girlfriend whose only worry was that she´ll mess her hair.
You see, a relationship is mismatched if two partners are on different wavelengths with no common ground. It is also a mismatch if there´s little communication between the two, and if there´s little enjoyment of each other or with each other.
If you and the guy you´re dating are in two different wavelengths and there´s too little to no common ground, then you´re in a mismatched relationship.
For example, you may be an adventurer. You want to move to bigger cities, climb the ladder and enjoy a challenging fruitful career. Your guy prefers the countryside, grow a ranch and keep it low-key.
Another example of a mismatched is interfaith relationship. A devoted Catholic and a devoted protestant are very likely to clash, unless one or both of them will retreat from their devotion and find a compromise.
If you have a strong relationship with God and he´s an atheist, it can´t be more mismatched than that.
4. The relationship lacks what one or both partners need and want.
If one or both partners need love, tenderness, sexuality or stimulation, honesty or respect, or emotional support and yet the relationship is unable to meet it.
For example, at a Q&A in one TV show the question being discussed on the table was sexless marriage. The woman who asked the question over the phone was in her early thirties. She had a problem with her husband who`s always not into having sex with her. They barely had sex in a year. She enjoys doing it but whatever attempts she have tried to seduce her husband were all declined. Her husband believes that sex is only for procreation. They`ve already procreated so that`s it.
If the couple won´t be able to discuss and find solution to the problem, the wife will eventually feel bitter and resentful towards her husband (if she wasn´t already).
If there´s no trust, respect, love or tenderness, honesty or emotional support, and for married couple a marriage which is lacking sexuality or stimulation, then it´s a bad relationship.
No relationship will thrive if your or your partner´s needs and wants aren´t met.
5. The relationship is a wasteland of emptiness, distance, loneliness and deprivation.
The loneliest place in the world to be is in a bad relationship.
Do you want to know what goes on in a man´s mind? Learn How to Read a Man .
6. The relationship is a battleground of hatred, rage and abuse.
If your relationship is abusive – physically, verbally, mentally and emotionally, and all you feel (and get out of it) is hatred or rage, then this relationship is totally bad for you.
There is no greater personal tragedy than remaining in a bad relationship. The only way for you to find a healthy, satisfying relationship is to let go of an irreparably unsatisfying one and move on.
But oftentimes you know that you should leave and end a relationship, but you´re not sure if it´s really the right thing to do. But staying in a bad relationship will only do more harm to your well-being than good. It will slowly eat you away, and kill you little by little every day.
The first step is to identify if what you have is indeed a bad relationship. Using the five signs above, diagnose the kind of relationship that you´re in. Once you´ve made the decision to leave, you´ve already won the toughest part of the battle.