We're used to getting advice on if he's "the one" or not. We pick petals off daisies, read countless magazine articles and debate it with our closest friends.
We make mental checklists of all the reasons he is or isn't Mr. Right, or even Mr. Almost Right.
Determining if he's "the one" seems to be pretty clear-cut to those who have found him, and as clear as mud to everyone else.
But, contrary to popular belief, there is an easy way to figure out if you two are forever. Sometimes you just have to think about it from the opposite side.
On that note, here's a list of red flags, so you can stop in your tracks, exit left stage now, call it quits and not waste another second.
1. He is dishonest.
Now I don't mean he's dishonest in that he tells you you look great in a pair of shorts you both know aren't flattering.
I mean he lies all the time, about big or small things, and you're always catching him somewhere he shouldn't be.
My mom always told me if someone can look you in the eyes and lie to you, they will do anything to you.
We've all told a fib here and there, but blatantly lying with no remorse is a real sign this person lacks a necessary component for building a lasting relationship.
Honesty is key; it establishes the very foundation a relationship is built on.
There is sometimes pain in telling the truth, especially to a partner you have wronged, but if he is able to fess up and be painfully honest with you, it usually means he is willing to accept his fault.
2. He genuinely does not care about things that matter to you.
Don't get me wrong; he is probably never going to see the importance of 15 decorative pillows or, in my case, understand how you could possibly need 15 blushes. That is normal.
What is not okay is a blatant disregard for things you hold dear. Whether it be your morals or aspirations, he should care to at least know what they are.
He doesn't have to understand, but he has to respect you.
He has to care about what you care about, and if he truly cares about you, it will be easy for him.
3. The people who matter most to you do not feel he is best for you.
This one is tough. I realize your friends and family may not always recognize what is right for you. However, people who care about you only want what is best.
If they detest your partner, there is probably a real reason for it. Whether he has wronged you or your friends see flaws you are blinded to, remember they have your best interest in mind.
4. He sucks the life out of you.
Think back to before you met. Did you have goals and aspirations you've let go because of the relationship?
Have you repeatedly given up and sacrificed things you used to hold close?
At some point in all relationships, we make sacrifices and sometimes our dreams change, but if he does not support and encourage you to live the life you've dreamed of, it is time to let go and live that life!
5. He breaks you down instead of building you up.
This one really hits home with most everyone I know at some point in their romantic lives. Being in an emotionally-abusive relationship is a pain you do not have to endure.
True love makes you into the best possible version of yourself, or at least gives you the confidence to try to become that person.
If he makes you feel less than worthy of the absolute best kind of love, please run in the opposite direction. Do not give anyone the power to break your spirit.
6. You find yourself constantly defending him.
"Well, he seems really sorry this time. He swore this was the last time. He didn't mean to hurt me, etc."
Does this sound like a constant loop playing in your mind? If so, a red flag is waving high and with vigor.
7. Things are only good with him after they are bad.
You should never have to argue to feel affection after an apology. You should not only receive flowers if he cheats on you.
You should not only feel loved after you have felt betrayed or belittled. Love isn't always perfect.
Everyone makes mistakes, even Mr. Right, but this constant roller coaster of a relationship will never lead to anything healthy.
8. You know, deep down in your gut, he isn't Mr. Right.
If there's anything I've learned in my life, it is to trust my gut. This intuition you've been given is such a gift.
Letting go is painful, hard and heartbreaking, but settling for Mr. Wrong is even more painful, hard and heartbreaking.
Trust yourself, the red flags and follow that gut of yours.