If Your Partner Doesn't Do These 7 Things, You're Forcing Your Relationship To Work
Working hard and giving your all to something is never a bad thing. But when it comes to relationships, there is such a thing as doing too much. It's important to be aware of how much effort you are putting in. If not, you may be trying too hard to make a relationship work.
As you probably know, relationships aren't easy. When there's distance or your relationship is in a rut, you'll need to put in the necessary effort to to turn it back around. But just remember, a relationship is a partnership. You can't be the only person investing energy into it.
"You'll keep working and working, thinking if you do this and that the relationship will get better or simply survive," relationship expert and author April Masini tells Bustle. While it may seem harmless to put a bit more effort into your relationship, this can cause resentment to grow even if you're not aware of it. "That feeling of resentment is a surefire sign that you’re working too hard to make something work," she says. "You’re basically working alone on a project that isn’t right for you."
So how do you know if you're actually forcing things to work? Pay attention to your partner's behavior and the way they make you feel. If you can't say your partner does the following things, you may be trying too hard to make a relationship work.
1. Asking About Your Day
When you're in a well-balanced relationship, your partner should be interested in what's going on in your life. You'll know because they make it a point to ask — and if they don't, things may be one-sided. "This lack of interest usually represents the relationship as a whole," lifestyle expert and writer, Amanda Raimondi, tells Bustle. If your partner has stopped asking you about your day, try bringing it up yourself and see how they react. "If they don’t seem to care, then you [might be] trying too hard to save this relationship," she says.
2. Encouraging You To Go For Your Goals
A healthy relationship is one in which both partners genuinely want each other to succeed. But if you can't honestly say that your partner supports your dreams no matter how "impossible" they seem to be, it's a red flag that this relationship may not work. "Life is too precious to settle for just OK," life and relationship coach, Elizabeth Su, tells Bustle. "Besides, it's much more fun to be in a relationship where your partner not only supports your big dreams but the two of you dream together."
3. Taking Initiative Just As Often As You Do
Consistency of communication is important for relationship longevity. Although your partner seems happy that you’ve checked in, couples therapist, Alisha Powell, PhD, LCSW, tells Bustle, never taking the initiative to do it first is a major red flag to watch out for. You shouldn't have to worry about whether or not you're going to hear from your partner if you don't give them a call or text first.
4. Telling You How They Feel
You'll know you're forcing a relationship to work when you're pretty unclear about where it's heading. "They may have told you that they like you, but nothing else has been said past that," Powell says. "Everything is up in the air." Someone who sees a future with you will be forthcoming with their intentions. You'll be clear on where they stand.
5. Taking Responsibility For Their Actions
When you're trying too hard to make things work, Caleb Backe, Health and Wellness Expert for Maple Holistics, tells Bustle, you might be the sole peacemaker in the relationship. "You'll [...] find yourself taking the blame when things go wrong even if it’s not your fault," he says. Your partner, on the other hand, may find a way to take the blame off themselves even if they were in the wrong.
6. Making You Feel Happy
Your relationship should be a source of love and happiness in your life. You should be able to rest easy at night knowing that your partner truly loves you, has your back, and is 100 percent committed to you. But if your relationship is bringing you more sadness than joy, Backe says, you may be forcing a wrong relationship to work.
7. Making You Feel Like You're Enough
When you're in a relationship, your partner can either lift you up or put you down. If you notice that your partner says things that make you feel like you're not good enough for them, you may want to take a step back and reconsider things. "A true partnership is one where you each help the other to see the best qualities in themselves so you can both shine brighter than you could ever have imagined," Su says. "Why bother with anything else?"
If your partner isn't giving as much to the relationship as you are, a conversation is necessary. But if nothing changes after you communicate your concerns, you'll need to decide whether or not this is something you're actually OK with. Letting go of someone is never easy. But it's a lot harder to put your all into something only to get very little in return. Everyone deserves to be in a good relationship that makes them feel happy, loved and wanted. If that doesn't describe how you feel about your relationship now, you may be trying too hard to make things work.