3 Early Signs Your Relationship Might Not Work Out, So You're Not Blindsided

At the beginning of a relationship, it's easy to get carried away with the excitement that comes with fostering a new romantic connection. Oftentimes, without even realizing it, people overlook red flags that could mean a new relationship doesn't have what it takes to blossom into something long-term. That's why knowing the early signs your relationship might not work out can bring into focus problem areas that should be confronted sooner rather than later. This way, if you're on different pages, there's still time to go your separate ways without investing time, energy, and resources into a relationship that's already on shaky ground.

To better understand whether your new relationship could get rocky, I spoke to NYC-based relationship expert and love coach Susan Winter. According to Winter, the best way to evaluate long term sustainability is to understand the difference between "potential" and "actualization." "Relationship potential is different than relationship actualization," Winter tells Elite Daily. "Establishing a viable connection is step one in the process. Focusing on one partner is the second part, which reveals whether they have the needed skill set for partnership." Once you're exclusive, it will become clear if the "potential" can be actualized into a serious relationship. So, here are some signs it could be time to pump the breaks.

1. You Bicker A Lot

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"If you're bickering with each other early on, it's not going to mellow out later," says Winter. "If anything, the bickering augments over time. And when there's an emotional investment, peoples' feelings tend to get hurt far more easily." Although there's nothing wrong with having disagreements, if you're rarely on the same page, this could be a sign that you're not compatible.

2. They're Unreliable

Few things can put a damper on the honeymoon phase like dating someone who you can't count on to show up. "If your date cancels plans early on, doesn't return text messages, or keeps showing up late — it's not going to be better later on," warns Winter. "This is a behavioral trait that shows lack of respect."

3. You Don't Feel Like A Priority

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Feeling like your partner places you high on their priority list is key. Even though they might not be able to put you first every single time, they should be making a consistent effort to ensure that you feel important. "If your date doesn't make you feel like a priority early on, it's not going to get better with time," says Winter.

How To Deal

If you've noticed the following signs that your relationship might not last, don't freak. All hope is not lost as long as you can have an open and honest conversation about your concerns. Winter recommends asking yourself and your partner some difficult questions. "Does this person have the desire, but lacks the toolset for a relationship?" poses Winter. "If so, you can help them by sharing your concerns and expressing your feelings. If they're motivated to be your partner, they will work to make sure they accomplish that goal."

Unfortunately, if your partner lacks the motivation to address the concerns you communicate, then this could mean their investment in the relationship isn't high enough to sustain the partnership in the long term. Even though this can be a tough pill to swallow, hoping things will suddenly get better could lead to disappointment in the end. Ultimately, if you notice these red flags, starting a dialogue ASAP could save you time that would be better spent dating someone who's on the same page.