25 Signs You're Not In Love Anymore

Are your partner's cute habits not cute anymore?

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How to know you're no longer in love, according to relationship experts.
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Being madly, deeply in love is a magical feeling, which is why songs, books, and movies are often centered around the experience. But what about the opposite? We often don’t hear about what it’s like to fall out of love, and there’s no clear roadmap for navigating life when feelings for your partner start to change.

Maybe you’re going through a rough patch and your relationship feels rocky, or perhaps you’re transitioning out of the honeymoon phase and no longer feel a rush of excitement. Either way, you’re going to experience a lot of ups and downs in your relationship, and it can be tough to tell if you’re just encountering growing pains – or if you’re truly falling out of love.

Before you call it quits, remember that it’s natural to have doubts while in a relationship, says Liz Keeney, LPC, a psychotherapist and owner of Inspired Talk Therapy. “It is completely normal for couples to have a ‘winter’ season once in a while and really get on each other’s nerves,” she tells Bustle. And it’s also common to wonder if someone “better” is out there.

One way to tell that you’re still invested is that you’ll feel concerned about these feelings, and you’ll want to find ways to change your relationship for the better. According to Rachel Wright, a licensed psychotherapist and sexual wellness expert at We-Vibe, falling out of love is often a choice. You and your partner get to make the decision to either work to improve your relationship or opt-out.

That’s not to say one decision is better than another (sometimes breaking up really is the best thing you can do), but it’s up to you as a duo to decide how you’d like to move forward.

To help you figure things out, Bustle asked relationship experts how to gauge your feelings if you keep having to ask yourself, “Am I still in love?” Here are some signs you might not be, as well as what to do about it.

1. You Can’t Stop Daydreaming About Dating Other People

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It’s one thing to notice an attractive person on the street, but if you have full-on wandering eye syndrome, experts say you may want to wander out of the relationship. Perhaps you can’t stop checking out other people, or maybe you downloaded Tinder or Bumble “just to take a look.”

Regardless of the form your wandering eye takes, these aren’t signals to ignore, says licensed therapist Rachel Elder. When you’re falling out of love, she says you’ll have that “grass is always greener” mindset more often than not.

Of course, non-monogamy can be a great option for couples who agree and consent to it, but there’s a difference between wanting to date within your current relationship and not being interested in your current partner. If you're constantly wondering if life would be better with someone else, Elder says there’s likely a reason for that.

2. The Butterflies Are Gone

You can’t expect yourself to be head-over-heels in love every single day, especially once your relationship has progressed beyond the honeymoon stage and you’ve settled back into the realities of life. But if you don’t feel any form of excitement for your partner, take note.

According to Jonathan Bennett, a certified counselor and dating expert at Double Trust Dating, all relationships require maintenance, so you may need to try a little harder to keep things fun and interesting by setting aside quality time, sharing new experiences, or even changing up your sex life by trying new things. But if you’ve made a concerted effort to reignite a lost spark and still don’t feel butterflies, you may not be romantically in love anymore.

3. You No Longer Prioritize Them

If you often forget to answer your partner’s texts, if you make weekend plans without them, or if don’t bother to include them in your vision of the future, take it as a sign.

“We all make time and space for what we want,” says Stacey Sherrell, LMFT, a licensed marriage and family therapist and a relationship expert at Decoding Couples. “If you find yourself prioritizing every other relationship, hobby, and obligation except your romantic relationship, this can point towards falling out of love.”

That doesn’t mean it’s bad if you have outside hobbies, friends, or if you want to spend time alone. (Those are all good things!) It’s just that you shouldn’t be forgetting about your SO. “For any relationship to be successful, both partners need to put in effort and work,” Sherrell says. If you no longer want to, it’s a glaring indicator that you’re no longer invested.

4. Your Sex Life Has Gotten Stale

It’s normal for your sex life to ebb and flow or for you to have different sexual preferences than your partner, says sexologist Jess O’Reilly, Ph.D. It can happen for all sorts of reasons: stress, physical health, or shifting relationship dynamics. But if you’ve completely lost interest and there seems to be no real explanation, it could be a sign that love has left the building. “Without sexual activity, the relationship is largely just a friendship or roommate situation,” adds Bennett.

A good litmus test is to ask yourself if you even want that spark back, suggests licensed counselor Nawal Alomari. If so, that’s something you can work on together as a way to improve your connection in the long run. If not, it might mean you’re not as romantically invested in the relationship as you thought.

It may also help to understand your own sexual baseline, says Wright, as that can help you figure out what you’re missing and why. Ask yourself, “‘How do I take care of myself sexually?’ or ‘What is my relationship to sex?’ Start there and reconnect with that first,” she tells Bustle. “Then look at the relationship and see where things are not aligning with what you want and what you’re practicing.”

5. You Don’t Want To Hold Hands


Everyone is different when it comes to how much (or how little) they need physical signs of intimacy, but take note if you used to hold hands, hug, and cuddle up on the couch, and now prefer to be on your own.

“This one can be tricky because intimacy ebbs and flows in relationships, but if your intimate life has pretty much completely stopped and that is an issue for you, but there is no intent in working on it, the love may be lost,” says Sherrell. “If one partner loses the want or desire to have any form of intimacy, not much separates the romantic relationship from a friendship.”

6. You’re No Longer Best Friends

It’s natural for your partner to become your BFF — not only because you spend so much time together, but because being each other’s best friends has many benefits, says Anita Chlipala, LMFT, a licensed marriage and family therapist and author of First Comes Us: The Busy Couple’s Guide to Lasting Love.

She says friendship can lead to greater relationship satisfaction, more commitment, and even better sexual satisfaction. It’s due to how close you feel as a duo, and how much you trust each other.

When you’re in a relationship with your best friend, you turn to them for support, tell them everything, and you share a super special bond. “If you no longer feel like you can or want to turn to your partner, it might signal a disconnect,” Chlipala tells Bustle. “Couples can focus on their friendship and see if that helps, but if it doesn’t, it might be time to call it quits.”

7. You Prefer To Open Up To Others

Sometimes there are things you don’t want to share with your partner, and as a result, you turn to friends, family, or a therapist to vent or get advice. While that’s completely OK, take note if you always seem to forget about your partner when it comes to opening up.

If you’ve fallen out of love, you may find yourself confiding in other people, says Dr. Monica P. Band, a trauma-informed licensed mental health therapist and owner of Mindful Healing Counseling Services. “You may find yourself doing things more independently instead of asking them for help,” she tells Bustle. “This is a way to disconnect from them — by not needing or relying on them in big and small ways.”

You may also notice that you suddenly prefer to keep secrets or hide your emotions, instead of opening up to your SO like you used to. As Band says, “You become more protective because you’re subtly detaching yourself and your life from this person.”

8. Their Cute Habits No Longer Seem Cute

Love can be blinding, especially in the early days when everything is fresh and new. If you were head-over-heels from the start, you likely didn’t notice that your partner chews really loudly, that they constantly spill their coffee, or that they always forget to use their blinker. But if you’ve fallen out of love, these little quirks might be all you can see.

If you’re with the right person, you’ll find these moments of annoyance kind of charming. If you’re falling out of love, however, you’ll use them as an excuse to cast your relationship in a negative light, and suddenly all your patience will go out the window.

Instead of viewing common mishaps as funny, she says you might feel angry, frustrated, or resentful instead. And the less you like your partner, the easier that is to do.

“When a couple is in love, they remember their last road trip when the car broke down as an adventure,” Keeney tells Bustle. “When a couple is struggling, they re-tell the same story with anger and hostility or blame towards one another.”

9. It Feels Like Something’s Missing In The Relationship

Another clue is a nagging sense that something is missing, says O’Reilly. There may be a lack of connection with your partner, or perhaps you don’t feel fully invested in one another’s lives. Even if you can’t put your finger on a specific problem, that seed of doubt is reason enough to call your relationship into question.

If you’re constantly unsure, O’Reilly emphasizes that you don’t need a “real” reason to break up. If you feel unhappy — or are constantly Googling “signs you’re not in love with your boyfriend” — that may be all the answer you need. After all, staying in a relationship when your heart isn’t in it won’t do you, or your partner, any favors.

It isn’t necessary to wait for things to go sour or to turn toxic before you leave. If you aren’t fully happy, permit yourself to move on.

10. You’re Unwilling To Make A Change


Whether your sex life is lacking or you’ve realized that you don’t spend enough time together, there are plenty of reasons why a relationship can lose its luster. Luckily, most of those issues can be addressed if you both put your minds to it and agree to make a change, says Alomari.

When you have love, affection, and respect for one another, often all it takes to overcome a slump is a fun weekend away or a sexy date night in. So consider it a red flag if you have zero desire to reach out and make plans, or if the idea of “fixing” the relationship seems like a chore. According to Alomari, that’s a sure sign your heart isn’t in it.

11. You’re Holding Onto Resentment

A relationship can feel stuck, stale, or stifled if one or both partners are holding onto hurt feelings or issues from the past. If you can’t get over that argument that happened five years ago, take some time to think about why it still makes you so mad.

Did something happen to break your trust and you feel like you can’t repair it? Was something said that showed your partner’s true colors, and you don’t trust that they’ve truly changed?

It could also be that you did something wrong but you don’t care enough to make amends, and that’s important to consider, too.

“You might feel like you’ve already contributed so much to the relationship, and you want to see effort from your partner,” Chlipala says. Whatever the case may be, it can certainly take a toll on how you feel about the whole thing.

12. You Dread When They Come Home

Consider how you feel right before you and your partner get home from work, or while you’re riding the subway to meet up for a Friday night date. If you’re consistently filled with dread – and not just because you’re tired and kind of wanted to stay in – then it may be a sign that you aren’t in love.

Even if your heart or head is confused, your body often tells you exactly what you need to know. Take note if your shoulders tense up, if your stomach gets bubbly, if you pull out of a hug early, or if you clench your jaw at the thought of hanging out. These physical signs of annoyance, stress, and even dread might be all the info you need, says Chlipala.

13. You’ve Started Canceling Dates At The Last Minute

If you dread seeing your partner, you may even start to look for ways to avoid them, says Holly Schiff, Psy.D., a licensed clinical psychologist with Jewish Family Services of Greenwich. Think canceling dates, putting your phone on DND, or saying you’re sick so they won’t come over.

“If you feel like you are actively finding ways to be without your significant other, your feelings for that person have clearly changed,” she tells Bustle. “You might be longing for someone or something else.”

14. You Wouldn’t Mind Not Seeing Them Again

Another way to determine whether or not you’re still into your SO is with a little thought experiment. Chlipala suggests imagining parting ways forever – like maybe you break up or they move away – and how that mental image makes you feel.

If you feel devastated, you likely still have some love or hope for the relationship. If you feel neutral, giddy, or even a little relieved by the hypothetical, Alomari notes that it might mean you want out of the relationship.

“This is one of the reasons why couples do a trial separation or take a break — they want to see if they miss each other,” Chlipala tells Bustle. “Sometimes the fear of the unknown can keep a couple complacent in a relationship that just isn’t working anymore.”

If you balk at the idea of breaking up or separating, try picturing it first. Use your imagination to envision how it might feel, and your feelings will start to become clear.

15. You’ve Got “The Ick”

Similar to the little habits and quirks that have become annoying, consider if you’ve gotten “the ick” in other ways.

When you’re madly in love, very few things feel off-limits. You’ll cozy up to each other when you haven’t showered, when you’re in a bad mood, and even when you’re sick, and that’s because love often knocks down all types of boundaries. But if you no longer feel comfortable doing so, Bennett says it may be a sign that your attraction has faded — and that your love has likely gone with it.

16. You Don’t Want To Take Care Of Them

Speaking of sickness, consider how you feel when it comes time to take care of a partner. Do you want to bring them soup when they’re sick? Would you help them carry bags if their ankle was broken? Or pick them up from the airport at 3 a.m.?

Losing attraction often goes hand-in-hand with a lack of effort. “If you’re not attracted to your partner, it may be because you’re not attentive or responsive to them — or just no longer want to be,” Chlipala says. “The less you emotionally invest into your relationship, the less attraction you will feel toward your partner.”

17. You Don’t Like Who You’ve Become

Sometimes it’s helpful to focus less on how you feel about your partner and more on how you feel about yourself, says O’Reilly. If you notice your feelings shifting, but you aren’t sure what to make of it, she recommends analyzing who you’ve become in this relationship.

Do you like how you are around them? Do they bring out the best side of you? Or do you hardly recognize yourself when you’re around them? If it’s the latter, it could be a sign that you feel unfulfilled by the relationship – or that it just isn’t right for you.

While it often feels good to be in a relationship, consider if this one is actually boosting you up, or if it’s dragging you down. “We’ve been taught that we’re not deserving of love,” O’Reilly says. “So, when someone shows up and likes us, that [feels] good enough.” But one-sided admiration isn’t enough to make it work long-term: You have to love yourself, too.

18. You’ve Lost Sight Of Your Goals

When you’re in the midst of a not-so-great relationship, you may start to lose sight of yourself in other ways. Because it takes so much effort to figure out if you’re meant to be, you’ll likely start to lose sight of who you are as a person. You won’t have time to see friends, you won’t feel invested at work, and you may drop hobbies that were once important to you.

A solid partnership that’s full of love will feel like a strong foundation or a support net. When you know you’ve got something good, you feel free to invest your energy into things outside the relationship, and your SO will encourage you to do so, too. If you’ve lost sight of yourself, consider that a red flag.

19. You Want To Transform Your Relationship

If you’ve fallen out of love in a romantic way, it may be because the relationship needs to transition into something new, says Wright. Maybe you still want your significant other to be a big part of your life but as a friend instead of a lover.

Whatever the goal, Wright recommends communicating this to your partner ASAP to see if they’re feeling the same way. That way, you can figure out how to move forward together. If you’re interested in exploring non-monogamy, for instance, it doesn’t mean you’re opting out of the relationship, but instead morphing it into something new.

It could also be really easy to step back into a friendship role where you remain important parts of each other’s lives but without the pressure of living together, paying bills, or thinking about marriage.

While many couples benefit from parting ways forever after a relationship goes south, Wright suggests asking if your SO would be willing to get “recast” into another role in your life. If they’re cool with it, you may end up with a great friend — and you can also stay in each other’s lives.

20. You No Longer Argue

People often think that arguing is a bad thing in a relationship, when in reality it’s OK to have little tiffs here and there. It can even be helpful to bicker, says Chlipala.

An argument might arise when you’re trying to make your busy schedules blend together or when the stresses of life get the better of you. It also might happen when you stand up for yourself or sort out a misunderstanding. These are things that will happen when you’re both showing up as your truest, fullest selves. If you’re in love, the respect you have for each other will see you through to a compromise.

It’s only when you become indifferent that there may be a problem, she says. If you’ve stopped adding your two cents to an argument, or if you no longer care about what your partner says or does, it may mean you’ve emotionally checked out.

Of course, there’s a big difference between the occasional small argument or disagreement and full-on toxic fighting, which is an issue in and of itself. If you’re blowing up at each other, that’s also a sign to get out.

21. You’re Quick To Snap

On the other side of the coin, you may notice that you’re always in a bad mood, that you’re quick to snap at your partner, or that you never have anything nice to say, Band says.

When you’re in love, you often have more patience and understanding for a partner. You’re quick to assume the best of them, and it will likely take a lot for you to truly get upset.

When that patience starts to fade, you might find that you feel a lot less gracious and accepting. When you aren’t fully invested or happy, it’s only natural to be on edge, and that’s when you’ll find yourself going from zero to 100 regularly.

22. You Have Developed Beyond Your Partner And They’re Unwilling To Grow

When you’ve been in a relationship for years and years, it’s natural for you both to grow and change as people. And again, you should be encouraging each other to do so.

It can be annoying, though, if you’ve matured and learned, but have noticed that your partner isn’t doing the same whether it’s in their career, in their friendships, or emotionally as a person.

“I have worked with clients who have taken on the meaningful journey of growing and healing their relational wounds to become better in their adult relationships,” says Liz Higgins, LMFT-S, a licensed marriage and family therapist and founder of Millennial Life Counseling. But she says not everyone can match that energy.

“This really can lead to a trajectory where you are moving beyond your partner and don't see a way to remain in a relationship with someone not willing to look at themselves, become better, and learn about their own attachment needs and tendencies,” she tells Bustle.

23. You No Longer Want To Commit

Take note if you wince at the thought of committing to your partner long-term, or if you never had that desire in the first place, as it could be a sign that you’re not really feeling them in that way.

Maybe you’d rather date just to have fun, or perhaps you’d prefer to be single altogether, and it’s totally fine to admit that. Feelings also change as time goes on, so you may have thought you wanted a partner when you met, but you’ve since realized it’s not for you.

As a side note, Chlipala points out that this may also be a sign of an avoidant attachment style, which could leave you feeling like you need to run away from someone the moment things get good.If you suddenly change your mind about wanting a long-term commitment, Chlipala says you should be able to articulate why.

If it’s just because you’re scared or because you don’t want to get hurt, let your partner know. Keeping them in the loop as you figure it all out is the kindest thing you can do.

24. You Shut Down During Conversations

According to Colleen Marshall, LMFT, a licensed marriage and family therapist and VP of clinical care for Two Chairs, there are four signs a relationship isn’t going to last, as identified by relationship expert Dr. John Gottman: criticism, contempt, defensiveness, and stonewalling.

If you catch yourself picking at your partner, viewing everything they do in a negative light, getting defensive when they try to talk, or completely shutting them out, chances are you’ll break up soon – and it would probably be for the best. The same is true in reverse, of course. If your partner does these things, it makes total sense why you’d fall out of love.

To keep a relationship going strong, you need to be able to communicate clearly, especially in the moments when you’re both upset. Marshall says the best way to do that is by using “I statements” that express how you’re feeling without pointing fingers. Saying something like, “I feel frustrated when our apartment is messy” could lead to a helpful discussion, compared to saying something more divisive like, “It makes me so mad when you’re so sloppy.”

Avoiding defensiveness is important, too, and you can do that by accepting responsibility for your half of the relationship. “And you could also avoid stonewalling by taking a break, calming down, and coming back to the conversation later on,” she says.

Many partners who find themselves dealing with these four issues will seek out couples therapy, says Marshall, but if that doesn’t interest you, or you can’t seem to resolve these ongoing problems after seeking outside help, it’s likely because you simply don’t want to expend the effort – or you know it won’t be worth it.

25. You Can’t Imagine Growing Old Together

If you’re in love, you likely have a clear picture of what your relationship might look like a year, five years, or 15 years down the line

If you can’t picture it or don’t like what you see, consider it a sign that you’re no longer in love, says Gaby Balsells, LSCW, an individual and couples therapist with Higher Fulfillment. “This can signify that parts of the relationship are unhealthy or you no longer meet each other’s needs,” she tells Bustle.

Even if you were in love a year ago, that might not be true today, and that doesn’t make you a bad person. “You may feel that you have grown in a different direction than the other person and this can not be reconciled,” Balsells tells Bustle.

It also doesn’t mean the relationship failed, as not all relationships have to last forever in order to be considered a success. It just might mean you’ve fallen out of love, and that it’s time to move on to the next chapter.


Nawal Alomari, LCPC, licensed clinical professional counselor and life coach based in Chicago

Jonathan Bennett, certified counselor and dating expert at Double Trust Dating

Rachel Elder, LMHC, licensed mental health therapist

Liz Keeney, LPC, psychotherapist and owner of Inspired Talk Therapy

Dr. Monica P. Band, trauma-informed licensed mental health therapist and owner of Mindful Healing Counseling Services

Stacey Sherrell, LMFT, licensed marriage and family therapist and a relationship expert at Decoding Couples

Jess O’Reilly, Ph.D., sexologist and ambassador for sexual wellness and sex toy brands We-Vibe, Womanizer, and Arcwave

Rachel Wright, licensed psychotherapist and sexual wellness expert at We-Vibe

Anita Chlipala, LMFT, licensed marriage and family therapist and author of First Comes Us: The Busy Couple’s Guide to Lasting Love

Holly Schiff, Psy.D., licensed clinical psychologist with Jewish Family Services of Greenwich

Liz Higgins, LMFT-S, licensed marriage and family therapist and founder of Millennial Life Counseling

Colleen Marshall, LMFT, a licensed marriage and family therapist, VP of clinical care at Two Chairs.

Gaby Balsells, LSCW, an individual and couples therapist with Higher Fulfillment

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