From time to time, everybody makes excuses and compromises in your relationship. One thing that should never be compromised, however, is being treated with care and respect. A partner can tell you that they love you a million times a day, but those words are empty if they also disregard the way you feel. Taking every opportunity to turn the conversation into one about them, dismissing your emotions or claiming that they are “too much,” or treating you like an accessory to their life are all signs he doesn't care about your feelings and isn't about to change.
And while there is a difference between someone who is a bit withholding with displays of affection and someone who just downright disregards you, not being willing to do things that make you happy is another sign. If your partner really cared about your happiness, then no act would seem too silly or beneath them to perform. You wouldn't feel like you needed to prove your worth to them, because you would already know how much he values you.
If any of these statements sound like your partner, then understand that just because they don't value your emotions, doesn't mean your feelings don't have worth. Your emotions are a part of you, and a relationship requires reciprocal care and support. You don't need someone to prove that to you. You already have yourself.
1. “If You Wanted To Sleep With One Of My Friends, I Wouldn't Care.”
A possessive or jealous partner is no good, but neither is one who is completely nonchalant about the physical relationships you might have with other people. If your partner is ambiguous about their feelings when it comes to you sleeping with other people, then that means they don't really cherish you. They aren't practicing non-possession; they're actually being dismissive. They're not asking you about whether you want to sleep with one of their friends, are they?
If they cared about your feelings, then they wouldn't treat you like a piece of meat to be passed around a circle of friends. The only time that anyone says something like this is to either a) distance themselves from the relationship, or b) excuse their own behavior. It isn't cute, funny, or open. It's just plain old rude.
2. “No, You're The One Who Doesn't Appreciate Me.”
If every time you have an argument — or for that matter, a conversation — with your partner, you find that they are turning the topic back onto themselves, then that means they are basically too caught up in their own self to care about your feelings. On top of that, they might just be a narcissist.
Someone with a selfish personality will talk about themselves more in the first few months of dating than they listen to you. Granted, sometimes, people talk about themselves a lot out of nerves, but if you have been dating for more than a month, and they still don't listen to you, then I'd be willing to guess they have at least one narcissistic streak.
Whenever you try to broach your feelings about your relationship, a selfish partner will disregard your emotions and make it all about them instead. In these kinds of relationships, there really isn't ever going to be room enough for two people. You're better off finding someone who can hold space for you, and they're better off by themselves.
3. “I Get That Going On Dates Matters To You, But Couple-y Things Just Feel Really Corny To Me.”
This phrase is often uttered by that sneakiest species of partners: the f*ck boys (and potentially, the f*ck girls). Now, speaking as a past f*ck boy, I can confidently say that most of us do actually care about your feelings. We are just emotionally stunted at the time that we meet, and that's why we are incapable of having a real relationship and resort to sucking you dry of all your resources instead.
However, there are f*ck boys/girls who legitimately don't give two hoots about the person they are sleeping with and really just want to get some. These relationships might easily resemble real ones, except for you never go out — and when you vocalize that that is something you want, the f*ck boy-disguised-as-boyfriend immediately shoots it down because it doesn't sound like something he wants to do.
When you're with someone who cares about your feelings, they're willing to put up with some things that you want to do, even if you have slightly different opinions about what constitutes a good date. Those are the kinds of compromises that have to be a part of a relationship, because it improves the happiness of you as a couple overall. If they aren't making those compromises, then they don't really care about the well-being of the relationship, and therefore, they don't really care about you.
4. “I Don't Understand Why You're Friends With Such Basic People.”
A partner who cares about your feelings will never insult the people you care about. A partner who wants to place a wedge between you and your friends or who puts down your friends as some backhanded way of paying you a compliment does not care about your feelings. They're either trying to separate you from your social circle so that they can have you all to themselves, or they're expressing a genuine disdain for a really important piece of your life.
A partner who cares about your feelings will also want you to spend time with your friends — because they know that they make you feel good! Never be with someone who puts you in the position of choosing between them and other people you care about. If they really cared, they wouldn't do that to you.
5. “I Can't Even Deal With You Right Now.”
You should never feel like a burden in your relationship. It's a pretty simple rule: If someone is making you feel like a burden on purpose, then they not only don't care about your feelings in a relationship, but they basically want to make you feel bad. When a person puts their partner down like this, it's to bolster their own fragile self-esteem by making it seem as though you are the person who is difficult in a relationship.
I used to have a boyfriend who would say this to me, usually after I tried to initiate any kind of conversation about where things were going or how we were doing. He made it seem like I wasn't the cool, chill girl he had started dating at first — and like that was a bad thing. Checking in on a relationship is necessary to its health, and so is expressing your feelings and discomforts. No one should ever make you feel like it is a bad thing.
No one should make you feel like it is "too much" to be in a relationship with you or that you need to make yourself smaller in order to fit into the space they have built for you. If that's the case, you have probably outgrown your uncaring partner and your relationship.
Next time they tell you that they can't deal with you, tell them that you can't deal with them or this relationship. Then, get your things, and head for the door.
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