Do you have a "one who got away"? What about someone you fell madly in love with, but you just couldn't make it work out because your careers, travel, or personal circumstances got in the way? It's that age-old phenomenon — you know it — when you're dating the right person at the wrong time, and your relationship is essentially fated not to work out.
But how can you tell this is the case? Are there signs you're with the right person, but the timing is all wrong? And does this phenomenon even exist?
Here are some ways to tell you might have met the right person, but the timing is all wrong. (Ugh. Doesn't that suck?)
1. You're Not The Best Version Of Yourself Yet
Let me tell you about my guy who got away.
A few years ago, I met a man who was essentially perfect for me. He was hot, nerdy, smart, driven, and funny. We had a ton of friends in common, and we had all the same hobbies. He took me on great, inventive dates. He even called instead of texted! What a gentleman. Chivalry was not dead.
No surprise, though: I ruined it. I was in the middle of battling a very secret drug and alcohol addiction and disappeared from his life completely because I didn't want him to find out who I truly was. I ghosted the perfect guy for me who had done nothing wrong. I ran away because I was scared and hated myself.
Now, four years later, as I'm sober and clean, this guy would be great for me. And I would be great for him! However, in that moment, the timing wasn't right. I couldn't give him what he wanted, needed, or deserved.
2. Your Career Is Your Significant Other Right Now
If work is your number one priority, then it's hard to incorporate dating into your life, no matter how much you like someone.
There's nothing wrong with your career being number one in your life. In fact, it's important to be motivated, passionate, and financially independent before you get into a committed relationship. It not only makes you desirable, but you never want to depend on your partner for stability in life.
That's not something you want them to be able to hold over you, and it can also lead to a lot of resentment in your relationship. So before you meet the partner of your dreams, hustle first. You won't regret it.
3. You're Still Getting Over Your Ex
Have you ever met a great person right after a breakup, but you're not quite ready to hop into a new relationship yet? It's the worst. If you still have one foot in the past, it's impossible to have your feet planted in the present with your new partner. How can you fall in love with someone new when you're still checking your ex's social media or wondering if they'll text or call?
While they say that the best way to get over someone is to get under someone new, this advice doesn't necessarily work when developing a sustainable, healthy relationship. It's possible to meet someone great when your heart has recently been broken, but until you have put the pieces back together yourself and learned the lessons you needed to from your previous relationship, the chances of having a successful new one immediately after are slim to none.
4. You Struggle With Codependency
If you don't know who you are yet, and you don't love yourself, then you certainly aren't able to love someone else. No matter how great your chemistry is with someone, unless you have proper boundaries, your relationship won't be healthy and is bound to fizzle out.
A healthy relationship involves two completely developed individuals, who grow together but maintain their independence at the same time. No matter how much you and your partner love one another, if you are still battling issues of codependence, then the timing of your relationship is wrong. Fix yourself and stand happily on your own two feet before you focus on someone else.
5. You're About To Move
There is nothing more painful than meeting someone right before you're about to move to a new city, state, or even country. (OK, there are a lot of things more painful, but you know what I mean.)
If you meet someone right before a move, and there is no possibility for a relationship at all, it's the absolute definition of the wrong timing. While you might be able to have a fling before you go (which could turn out to be really special), your relationship has an expiration date. At least if you move, you won't have to see them around, right?
If you meet the right person, then maybe timing will always work out. Sometimes, what you might think is a perfect person at the wrong time might just be someone who is bad for you at a time that isn't great either.
When it comes to falling in love, John Steinbeck wrote that "nothing good gets away." If a person is right for you, then they won't get away either, regardless of the timing.
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