5 Signs You're Dating Someone You Can't Lean On During Hard Times

by Cosmo Luce

No matter who you are, difficulty and challenges will meet you. That's just one of the rules of being alive: You're going to lose something. All loss really is a calling to initiate change. When you have a partner who can't stand by you during the hard times, your calling might be telling you that you've outgrown the relationship. In the end, unsupportive people will only ever drag you down. You are worthy of much more than folks who won't show up for you.

Absence speaks volumes, but these signs your partner is unreliable will manifest long before hardship comes knocking at your door. Knowing the signs your partner is unreliable can help you establish necessary boundaries around your heart. Love is about showing up for each other equally, 50-50, through the good times and bad. According to the matchmaking experts at Tawkify, the red flags might not be as big as you think. In fact, it can be something as simple as not showing up early on.

"Excuses are a symptom of unreliability," said Julia Armet, Director of Operations at Tawkify. "It's easy to believe what someone is saying, but are you seeing what they are doing? All excuses aside, poor follow-through or inconsistent behavior speaks for itself."

Here's what other members of Tawkify's team had to add:

1. They Are More Talk Than Action

According to matchmaker Rémy Boyd, actions speak way, way louder than words. She says that a partner continuously discussing ideas for big relationship changes, without moving forward, is a major sign that they won't be there when change is actually thrust upon you.

"For example, he or she talks about moving in together or getting married all the time, but never makes the effort to look for places or pop the question!" Boyd elaborates.

Someone might be on their best behavior early on, says matchmaker Evyenia Trembois, so the warning signs might be super subtle.

"You may not think that the one time your partner bailed on helping you move a couch translates to big things, like being there for you through big life decisions, or a death in the family," says Trembois. "This is simply not true."

2. They Take You For Granted

If you're putting 75 percent of the effort into a relationship and your partner is only giving it 25 percent, it means they're taking you for granted. This lack of effort will translate into unreliability down the line.

"[They're taking you for granted when they] expect you to be there for them during family gatherings, business parties or tough days, but when things are reversed, they have more important things to do," says Boyd.

Matchmaker Willow Frederick says another sign that someone is unreliable is when the effort they put into a relationship is unpredictable.

"Unreliable behavior will not give you the assurance that they will always be ‘there for you’ no matter what," says Frederick. "They may have forgotten to pencil your date in their calendar, or maybe they purposefully put their friends before you on a regular basis."

3. You're The Last To Know How They Really Feel

Being in a relationship means being honest with one another and having an open line of communication. It also means coming to one another first when there is a problem. To do otherwise translates into unreliability, says Boyd.

"If everyone else's input is more important to your partner than yours, they clearly won't have your back (or care what you think) down the line," Boyd says.

Another telltale sign, according to matchmaker P.J. Lascsak, is when your partner stops listening to you.

"This is an indication that they have 'checked out' of the relationship and you can clearly sense that they are simply going through the motions, rather than putting in the intellectual and emotional effort that is required to sustain a successful partnership," Lascsak says.

4. They Speak In Tongues

Matchmaker Alyssa Bunn points out that, in a relationship, clear communication is of the utmost importance. We can talk and talk all day through texting and instant messaging, but that doesn't mean that we are saying what's really important.

"We live in a mile-wide, inch deep world, whereas human relationships are about going deep and being close, not saying one thing and doing another," says Bunn. "If you two are talking, but not getting anywhere together, it's for good reason: They're unreliable."

5. You Feel Anxious AF

Lastly, but certainly not least, is how you feel in the relationship itself. Bunn says that your feelings definitely matter, and they give you a lot of information about how a relationship is really going.

Bunn says that a warning sign of an unreliable partner is when "your friends tend to think of you as the calm, cool, and collected one — perhaps even the voice of reason — but when it comes to you and your partner, your emotions become more unpredictable than Trump's tweets."

"You're overloaded with questions, concern, and a general sense of despair," she elaborates. "No, honey, you're not hangry. You just have to learn to get up from the table when reliability is no longer being served."

Does any of this sound like your current relationship? If so, Frederick says it's time for a serious talk.

"It’s worth having a conversation about both of your expectations for communication and scheduling," says Frederick. "That is, how often you will 'talk' (phone calls, texting, via social media), how often you’ll go out together, and so on."

And if they can't give you that? Bunn says it really isn't that complicated.

"Unreliable is just another word for someone who is afraid of commitment," she says. "There was a time, not long ago, when commitment wasn't regarded as a disposable Post-it note."

In this case, Bunn says that mom's old adage was right: A leopard really doesn't ever change its spots. So don't stick around waiting for something that's never going to happen. There are plenty of people who will be able to support you just the way you are.

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