7 Dealbreakers That Will Only Become Clear After Your First Anniversary
Getting to your first dating anniversary is a big deal, and it's something to celebrate. But once you've dedicated a year to someone, you also wanted to make sure you're happy with where you're at with your partner. Some red flags come up right away, but there are other dating dealbreakers that only happen after you've been together for awhile. Not meeting someone's parents a month in? No big deal. But if a year goes by and you still haven't met their family despite expressing your interest, then it might be time to reevaluate your relationship.
"After one year, couples naturally enter into a different phase of their relationship where talks turn to planning for their future as a couple and sharing a life together," psychotherapist Margena Carter, tells Bustle. "Although you’re still 'courting,' this is a time when couples really begin to develop their roles in the relationship, including rituals and traditions. If you see red flags, it’s better to break-up sooner than later. You can’t change the person. And any problems you have will only be amplify over time."
Of course, one year can still be considered an early part of your relationship, which is going to still require some trial and error. However, some issues require some attention, and you'll want to address them to help yourself have a happy relationship. Here are seven dating deal breakers that only happen after your first anniversary.
1. They Don't Want You To Meet Their Family Or Friends
If your partner shows no interest in introducing you to friends or family, this is a sign that they are unsure of the direction in which the relationship is moving. "If you have not met the significant people in your partner’s life by this time, you most likely won’t," says Carter. "The gesture of meeting the parents solidifies the next phase in the relationship." If they don't want you to meet the important people in your life, they might not want the relationship to progress, and that is something to discuss with them.
2. You Don't See A Future With Them
Just as they should see a future with you, you should see a future with your partner as well. "If you don’t see a future with the person that you’re involved with, then you’re probably just friends with benefits," says Carter. "If one person wants more than the other, then they will likely feel like they are not getting enough out of the relationship. Over time, [...] someone will feel unfulfilled and walk away from it." If you are not looking for something long-term, this can be OK, but if you are looking for a lifetime commitment, this is something to consider.
3. You Get Nervous To Do Or Say Certain Things
Once you've been with someone for awhile, you want to feel free to talk about your feelings, desires, and likes without fear of your partner getting angry or upset. "If you notice you feel nervous about saying certain things or making decisions you want for yourself, or if you find yourself asking the other person’s opinion before making a decision of something you know you want, make sure you are not in a cycle that is not conducive to your growth," relationship expert Dr. Carolina Castaños, Ph.D, tells Bustle. While consulting your partner on major decisions that impact them is important to your relationship, take note if it feels like you're walking on eggshells around them.
4. Your Moral Compasses Don't Align
Your morals are the guiding principles in how you view and live life, and if you and your partner aren't on the same page, you're going to inevitably run into issues. "Incompatibility because of moral values will create major conflict within the relationship," says Carter. You may also experience internal turmoil over your values, Carter says, which can lead you to question if the relationship is right for you.
5. You Don't Like Your Sex Life
"Sex is our way of bonding, expressing love, and creating intimacy in our relationships," says Carter. "It provides us with great feelings of fulfillment. On the other hand, when you have a poor sex life — due to different sexual tastes, libido, or lack of intimacy — it makes life with your partner unenjoyable. A healthy sex life is one of the most important parts of a relationship, and when it’s bad, everyone is unhappy." While the quickest way to improve your sex life is to communicate openly, and practice active consent, a therapist can also help with any issues you are having with your sexual relationship.
6. You Don't Trust Your Partner
If you’ve been in a relationship for one year, and your trust has been broken, or you haven’t yet developed trust, then that’s a huge red flag. "There’s a reason you don’t trust your partner," says Carter. "Trust your instincts. There’s something wrong that hasn’t come to light. Trust your intuition because it’s telling you something is wrong. If you don’t have trust, you will never truly be happy with your partner and constantly wonder about what they are doing and with whom. This will lead to insecurities, as well as an emotionally, unhealthy and dysfunctional relationship."
7. The Relationship Is A Secret
It's time to reevaluate the relationship if you are being kept a secret. "If you are in a committed relationship a year in, there should be no need for secret meetings or lying about your whereabouts or your status to others," relationship expert and psychotherapist Kelly Bos, tells Bustle. "Sometimes the secrets exist due to a desire to not hurt someone that you have moved on from, or from a fear that an aspect of your relationships won't be accepted by your family or friends. Although these are understandably difficult waters to traverse initially, this is a red flag if you are still seeing this a year in and a great time to voice healthy expectations."
If you've been dating for a year and are experiencing these issues, you might want to take a closer look at your relationship, and talk to your partner about any reservations you may have.