Relationships are tricky. It is easy to spot a toxic entanglement from the outside looking in, but to recognize our toxic relationships can be difficult. Sometimes we are so deep in the middle of the drama that we can’t see the damage it is doing until it is too late. There are some that are lucky to learn from past relationships, but others might be repeating the cycle, not even realizing that they are doing so. 

Being in love is powerful. When we’re in love, our partner seems more attractive and more desirable in our eyes than they really are. Think about it, we’ve all dated someone only to look back years later and wonder what we were thinking. That is the power of love.

We want to hold on to our relationships at all costs. We’ve invested our heart; we don’t want to end up alone, or we feel there is no way out. Whatever the reason it’s enough to keep us in a relationship that isn’t in our best interests.

So we stay and try to make the best of a not so good situation. We hope things will improve and maybe even go to extremes thinking we can save what we have. We do these things knowing our romantic lives will not improve, but we continue to try anyway.

Is there ever a right time to end a relationship and if so, when is it? 

Here are 10 signs it’s time to end your relationship:

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1. Physical Abuse

This might seem obvious, but when someone is deeply entrenched in a relationship, it is easy to explain away the behavior. They offer up a variety of excuses that justifies the abuse as if any justification would make it okay. Whether it’s the first time or the tenth, physical abuse is never acceptable and is only an indication of future trouble and heartache.

Do you feel unsafe leaving? Contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline for assistance at 1?800?799?7233. Help for domestic violence victims is a call or click away

2. An Unequal Partnership

If one person seems to be more in control inside the relationship, then it isn’t really in a relationship. A relationship is an exchange of give and take. Indeed, each person contributes or supports the relationship in different roles, at different times. If one person remains on a pedestal, it may be time for the other to find a relationship where they are valued as an equal partner.

3. The Lines of Communication Are Blocked

A strong relationship can’t exist without solid, free-flowing communication. It’s important to be comfortable talking about the tough subjects. It is a clear signal that it’s time to end a relationship if communication is being avoided for fear of certain types of reactions.

4. Addictive Behavior

It doesn’t matter the type of addiction, if it has infected the relationship, and they aren’t willing to stop the behavior, then the relationship is over. There is another relationship getting in the way, and that is between the other person and their addictive behavior and it’s in both parties best interest to walk away.

5. Patterns of Deceit

Whether it’s lying, cheating, or omitting information, a pattern of deceitful behavior is an indication that there is trouble. Of course, everyone makes mistakes, but when a pattern becomes evident, that’s when questioning the partnership should begin.

6. Your Feelings Have Changed

As we grow and evolve as individuals, the goal is to grow and evolve as a couple as well. But, unfortunately, that isn’t always the case. If one person’s feelings are moving from romantic to platonic, it’s time to change the status of the relationship. 

7. A Lack of Respect

Mutual respect for each other, even in the face of disagreement, is necessary to keep the lines of communication open and for both parties to feel safe, secure and loved. If respect is lacking, and there is a constant feeling of being under attack, it might be time to call it quits.

8. There is An Absence of Emotion

If the relationship is based on physical attraction without an emotional investment, the relationship will eventually come to an end. It’s important that both partners are invested equally for the relationship to survive. 

9. There’s Excessive Drama

If there is always an issue or crisis, stop feeding into it and consider that this may not be the healthiest of situations. Excess drama happens when someone is seeking attention, and that means they are looking for something that they most likely will not find in any relationship, much less the one they are in.

10. It Takes Too Much Effort

If everything about the relationship requires too much effort, you may have already given up on it. If date nights, celebrations, and even staying in feels like an inconvenience, it may be that the relationship is inconvenient.

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Final Thought: Ending an Unhealthy Relationship Might Be Better Than Unhappiness

While all romances encounter bumps in the road from time to time, if there is a nagging voice that says something isn’t right, then it probably isn’t. It’s difficult to do, but when we take a step back and look at our relationships through our friends’ eyes, it will become much clearer what we should do.