11 Subtle Signs Your Long-Term Relationship Might Not Be Going As Well As You Think

If you've been with your partner for a while and feel like you haven't had any major issues, you might believe you are in a happy, healthy relationship and heading in the right direction. Maybe you pride yourselves on how infrequently you fight, but lately you've been feeling like you need more alone time than usual. If certain things are not sitting well, and you're not sure why, it may be time to reflect.

In some cases, a lack of arguing can actually be a bad sign. And other issues, like your sudden and intense need for alone time, could have a deeper meaning than you think. After some careful thought, you and your partner might realize you're not compatible, and it may be time to go your separate ways. And that's OK. But this realization can also be a the perfect moment to talk about how things went awry, so you can work on getting them back on track. Opening up to your partner may clue them in on how to fulfill your needs in a way they haven't before.

"It is important to have real conversations about our hopes, dreams, desires, and needs," Dr. Alicia Walker, a relationship expert and assistant professor of sociology at Missouri State University, tells Bustle. "If your partner doesn't know what you really want and need, the odds of them guessing it and giving it to you are low. Your partner is not a mind reader, and neither are you."

So speak up. It's OK to argue. It's OK to not get along. And it's OK to not be "perfect" if it means having a healthier relationship in the long run. Here are a few signs it may be time to talk, so you can have a perfectly imperfect relationship going forward.