Life would be so much easier if you knew without a doubt that the person you're currently dating is the right one for you. It would definitely save you the trouble of having to waste your time and get your heart broken by all the wrong ones. But since life isn't as straightforward as many of us would like it to be, you may need to rely on signs, logic, and intuition, to determine whether your partner is really right for you or not. If you've been having second thoughts about your relationship, experts say there are a few telling signs that you've met your soulmate.
As great as your relationship can be, second thoughts can hit you out of nowhere. For instance, you may be six months into your relationship and realize that things have already become "too comfortable." When that happens, it can have you wondering if maybe the sparks faded quickly for a reason.
But as Annie Wright, LMFT, licensed psychotherapist and owner and clinical director of Evergreen Counseling tells Bustle, having second thoughts is totally common.
"Contrary to what Disney movies, Rom Coms, and most pop songs teach us, love and being with the 'right' partner doesn't always look like fireworks or being completely certain about the other," Wright says. Instead, many of us will feel a certain degree of ambivalence, doubt, or have second thoughts. "It's important to know that you're not alone in this nor does this necessarily mean that your relationship is the wrong one for you," she says.
So if you're at the point where you're questioning your relationship, here are some signs your partner is actually the right one for you, according to experts.
1. Your Partner Passes "The Airport Test"
Imagine that your second thoughts have actually led you to break up with your significant other. Next, imagine dropping them off at the airport, knowing that you're sending them off and that you'll never see or hear from them again. "Deeply imagine this and pay attention to the physical sensations that arise in your body," Wright says. Do you feel sad, devastated, maybe even a little panicky? Or do you feel relieved, happy, or very ambivalent?
"When we imagine into a future that doesn't involve this person, we can collect clues about how we authentically feel about this person," she says. "These feelings, combined with mindful self-reflection, time, and working on any internal or external factors that you or they may be contributing to the unhappiness of the relationship can be powerful in helping you to work through any questions and doubts you ultimately have about the relationship."
2. You Feel Completely Safe And Secure With Your Partner
It's so easy to have second thoughts about your partner once the honeymoon period ends and you feel like you know everything there is to know about your partner. "At some point in a relationship, everyone might wonder if they’re settling or if they can do better," Samantha Daniels, Dating Expert and Founder of Samantha’s Table Matchmaking tells Bustle. But if you trust them wholeheartedly and feel completely secure in the relationship, they may be the right one for you. Your relationship may not be as hot or you may not see eye-to-eye on everything anymore, but as long as there is a "strong foundation of trust," Daniels says they can be the right person for you.
3. You Can't Pinpoint Things That Are Going Wrong In Your Relationship
When you have second thoughts about your partner, it may not even have anything to do with them at all. "Thoughts are things we say to ourselves," Dr. Danielle Forshee, doctor of psychology and licensed clinical social worker, tells Bustle. "Our thoughts reflect our beliefs. Thoughts are things that we say to ourselves and strongly influence how we interpret behaviors of others and our expectations." For instance, you may think to yourself, "My partner doesn't put a ton of effort into romance anymore. Our relationship is on the decline." But what are some ways your partner does put effort into the relationship? Making you coffee in the morning may not seem like a romantic gesture, but some people would love it if their partner was thoughtful like that. So if you've actually sat down and really compared your second thoughts about your relationship to the reality of things and found your relationship is actually pretty solid, that's a good sign. As Dr. Forshee says, it's always important to check yourself as your thoughts may not be consistent with the true reality of what is actually going on.
4. You're Willing To Work At The Relationship
"There’s a natural ebb and flow to relationships, and overall, it’s the emotional connection that counts," Daniels says. So if you are still willing to put in the work to make your relationship last and you still see a happy future with them, your partner may be "The One." If you're unsure, have a conversation with them. "Talk about your concerns and fears and see if you can work through things together," she says.
5. You're Not Afraid To Disagree With Each Other
You may have second thoughts about your relationship if you find yourself disagreeing with your partner a lot. But it's important to take a step back and really think about what these disagreements are about. "It’s normal to have disagreements with your partner," Caleb Backe, Health and Wellness Expert for Maple Holistics, tells Bustle. "It’s only when these turn into intense fights or arguments that you should reconsider that status of your relationship." That's why Backe says, one of the "surest signs that you’re with the right person" is having the ability to agree to disagree and not carry any resentment because of it. "It’s not easy to disagree and maintain unconditional love because we are naturally inclined to impose our thoughts and feelings onto others," he says.
6. You Make A Great Team
Competing with your partner can be fun, and for some couples it can even keep their relationship fiery and interesting. But when you're with the right one, there's no competition necessary. "A relationship is how two independent identities merge to form a [stronger] unit," Backe says. "It’s essential that you and your partner can work together." So if you and your partner are a team and your strengths and weaknesses complement each other, that's a really good sign that your relationship is the right one. This means you're properly equipped to take on whatever life will throw your way.
7. Your Partner Isn't Afraid To Be Vulnerable With You
As Dating and Relationship Coach, Rosalind Sedacca, CLC, tells Bustle, "When we don’t spend the time and energy to fully know our partner before committing to them we can find ourselves having second thoughts." Communication is important to have in any relationship. It's truly hard to plan a future with someone who can't be vulnerable or open themselves up to you. So if your partner is comfortable being themselves around you and they can talk to you about anything and everything, they may be the right one for you. If the reason behind your second thoughts is your partner's inability to open up, give it some time. "Be patient with one another," Sedacca says. "Every relationship needs tweaking along the way, so don’t give up prematurely. You may be in a healthy relationship that evolves as you both do."
Again, having second thoughts is completely normal. You should only be concerned if it's keeping you up at night and causing you emotional distress, as Daniels says. Sometimes your thoughts and expectations can get the best of you. But if you can open up to your partner about how you're feeling, talking things out can do wonders for your relationship.