5 Signs That Prove You Need To Walk Away From Your Relationship

My ex and I were together for just over a year. It was the longest year of my life. We got off to a rocky start since we shouldn't have really been in a relationship in the first place. But because life happens as it does, the relationship continued. It was fast, deep and a whirlwind of emotions, just like our sex.

In fact, I knew from the get-go that it wasn't going to work. But it was passionate, the sex was great and we both needed someone at the time. Even though I knew in my heart it wasn't going to work out, I gave it my all.

I tried to change his mind and behavior with regard to certain things. I ultimately put way too much of myself into the relationship. I lost sight of the fact that it wasn't worth it in the long run.

After a lot of heated arguments, stubbornness and learning about each other, we finally got on a smooth path. We coasted for a while. Things seemed to be going well.

But as time went on, I started to notice things weren't getting any better. The red flags I had once ignored were now glaringly obvious to both me and everyone else in my life. This ended up having a huge negative effect on both our relationship and my view of myself.

1. The emotional connection was not the same as it once was.

There was a point when I realized that in all the time we were together, we really never had a true emotional connection. At some point in every healthy relationship, there's an "aha" moment that solidifies that you love each other in the same way.

For some, it could be after a huge fight and some time apart. For others, it could be after some time passes. You realize the person would do anything for you.

I was trying to give our relationship time to reach that moment, since the dust was still settling from our rough start. But no matter how many talks, desperate pleas, tears or big emotional situations we had, it just never came.

He was emotionally shut off from intimacy, which we realized together was a huge problem for him. It was hard not to take it personally at first, but I now know it had nothing to do with me.

He was damaged. As a result, he wasn't willing to open up to me (or anyone) during that period. It sparked a domino effect that affected the rest of our relationship.

2. My gut was telling me something was off.

This one might be a no-brainer, but I ignored it for so long. My intuition practically had to scream at me before I finally listened.

It almost felt like he had another life I didn't know about, but I couldn't explain why. Maybe he was cheating on me and I never found out, or maybe I just knew we weren't going to work out, so I was subconsciously seeing our major differences.

We lived together and recently adopted a dog together. From the outside, we seemed great. We always got compliments from strangers in public who praised our great energy as a couple. But it was really just our witty personalities feeding off each other.

It was no deeper than that. Everything else felt forced, stressed and tense. I should have listened to my intuition earlier.

3. I was going through the motions, instead of reaching the next level in my relationship.

It's easy to take the next step in your relationship – such as moving in together, adopting a dog together or getting engaged – because it seems like the logical thing to do. Couples do these things all the time before they're ready. They think these actions should based on the amount of time they've been together.

This way of thinking is so wrong. Yet, so many couples get caught up in it. We moved in together too early due to financial reasons. We were naive and thought moving in together would help us in other areas of our relationship. It didn't.

If anything, it made things way worse. The relationship became way harder to get out of.

We adopted a dog when things finally seemed stable between us over a year later, even though I wanted to wait until the two-year mark of security. (There's that intuition talking again.)

He was impulsive, and I was wary of our future. Despite having an apartment, a dog and a year-and-half-long relationship together, it still felt like we weren't as serious as people assumed we were.

There was never a true foundation for us to build upon, and it seemed like every effort we put into building it was way more work than we had to show for it.

Looking back, I see that the relationship was a house in shambles. It had missing support beams, no roof and mismatched materials, since we couldn't agree on which ones to use.

4. I felt lonely, even when I was with my partner.

I can't count how many times I silently cried myself to sleep when we were together. There were so much emptiness inside me, and I just couldn't shake it. I was lonely in my relationship, and it was the worst feeling in the world.

I didn't feel comforted, or even that he cared about my feelings. We had the same talk about the same problems so many times. At that point, it was normal for me to cry.

He was also annoyed that we kept repeating the same cycle over and over again. This should not be the case.

5. There was no respect.

Respect should be a given in any relationship. If you don't feel respected in your relationship, it's time to go.

You shouldn't have to fight for your partner to listen to what you have to say. If you feel like your feelings are getting belittled, your opinion doesn't matter or you can't express your thoughts, there is lack of respect in your relationship. This is just the tip of the f*cked up relationship iceberg.

If you feel like you related to some of these a little too much, it might be time to reevaluate what you want and where your relationship is going. Don't stay because of the sex, because you feel guilty or because it's too difficult to leave for whatever reason.

There is always a way, and your happiness is more important than a dead-end, waste of time relationship. Personally, I believe everything happens for a reason.

I do believe I learned a lot from my last relationship, and my ex was only meant to be in my life in order to teach me something. He was not my forever, even though I tried to push him in that direction.

You will grow, move on and have a stronger sense of what you want. You'll know what you will or won't accept with regard to your future partner.

I'm a better person because I ended my relationship. I deserve better than what I was tolerating. It's the best decision I ever made because I realized the relationship was holding me back from so many things I wanted for myself. Now that enough time has passed, we both see that what we had was nothing like we had thought at the time.

I'm surprised to report that we recently agreed to be friends, since we got the space and time we needed to take a step back. It was a great decision for the both of us.

Your happiness is important. Don't let someone take it from you.