It's hard to tell when you should get out of a relationship or when you should keep fighting to make it work.
I've definitely tried to make relationships work for far longer than I should have. We probably should have broken up after two weeks, but instead, we lasted five years.
When you love someone, you're sometimes blinded by the fantasy of them, instead of the reality. You are in love with who they once were or who you think they could be instead of how they're actually acting right now. And sometimes, that can be pretty sh*tty, despite how hard you try to deny it.
So how do you know when your relationship is probably over, and it's time to stop fighting?
I asked dating and relationship expert Jen Kirsch about some subtle signs it's time for you to leave your relationship.
1. He Never Keeps Promises
Kirsch offers an example from Sex and the City that demonstrates this sign: "I just rewatched the Sex and the City episode the other day in Season 5, where Carrie is so excited for her friends to meet Petrovski. They all glam up, go to a hot resto, only for a waiter to come to the table and let Carrie know that he just called and can no longer make it.
She continues, "The emotion and disappointment Carrie felt at that moment was palpable for me, because I've been there before. It's embarrassing. It's disappointing. And it makes you feel unvalued."
Not to mention, the time when Carrie stands up her own book party because he says he needs her support at his gallery opening, and then, he just completely disses her.
Ugh! I've so been there, too. I once spent Valentine's Day cooking an elaborate steak dinner in lingerie for a guy who never even came home.
"Sure, things come up and we should roll with the punches, but if your partner is notorious for not keeping his word, then it's time to say goodbye and find someone whom you can depend on, who won't constantly let you down and disappoint you," Kirsch says.
According to her, you absolutely have to "know your worth."
2. He Doesn't Care To Ask About How Your Day Was
Sign it's time to break up? If your conversations are always surface-level, it's probably not a good sign.
"When you guys chat it's about superficial things, like the people you run into, and people watching," Kirsch says. "But he never asks about that big meeting you had. (Heck, he doesn't even know who it's with, why you were having it, nor does he care about the outcome).
According to Kirsch, you two should constantly be growing together, instead of being stagnant: "The guy who sticks to easy convo and avoids serious talks is stuck, and it's not your job in life to see him through that."
You shouldn't have to force depth upon someone else. In fact, you shouldn't have to force anything. If your guy isn't naturally interested in what's going on with you, then it's probably time to get out.
3. He's Angry When You Don't Want To Have Sex
If he makes you feel guilty every time you don't want to hook up with him, then he probably only wants one thing out of you: sex.
"This is someone who is immature, takes things personally, and doesn't know how to communicate in healthy ways," Kirsch explains. Time to get out of that relationship.
"Whether he flat out tells you, or if he tells you that you 'gave him blue balls' and says he now needs to go jerk off, this guy isn't mature enough nor understanding to be in a relationship with a badass babe like yourself," she says. "A guy who makes you feel guilty for your sexuality (at one-off times or ever) isn't worth your time or energy."
Whether he does it subtly or tries to coerce you into sex when you're not interested because, as his girlfriend, he thinks you "owe" it to him, this isn't someone you should be in a relationship with. What he's looking for is not a relationship.
4. He Has Anger Issues
Don't date a guy with a bad temper. That goes without saying.
"If you're scared he's going to have an outburst at moment, then your whole relationship you'll be walking on eggshells. Worse, when a partner doesn't know how to control their temper (whether directed towards you or others) they will likely say and do things out of anger, only to beg for forgiveness and be embarrassed after the fact," Kirsch says.
According to her, your best option is to instead "find a partner who practices self-control and knows how to let things pass."
Plus, you never know how that anger might escalate with time.
5. He's Keeping Inventory
Is your guy keeping tabs on everything you do that annoys him, and then, bringing it up when you have arguments? Yeah, you don't need a grocery list of everything he perceives you've done "wrong" in the relationship for the past five years.
Kirsch explains, "This is the worst behavior in a relationship and a clear sign it's time to go. A relationship isn't about keeping tabs on one another. Don't walk, but run away from a person who does this."
So if your relationship is showing a few — or all — of these signs, it might be time to get out and move on to something new. Or better yet, spend some quality time with yourself.
You're a prize, and there's no need to settle for someone who doesn't treat you like one.