Who doesn’t want the person they are dating to be “The One”? How do you know if they are the one for you or not? There are usually plenty of warning signs when we meet someone, but we tend to ignore them. However, there are some very serious warning signs that you need watch out for.
There are at least three warning signs that the person you are dating might not be the one for you.
1) They turn things around and blame you.
I once had a boyfriend who liked to make everything my fault. Almost anything I said would be met with, “I feel like you’re judging me,” or, “I feel judged.” It took me months and months to get him to understand that I in fact wasn’t saying anything judgmental. His natural reaction was always to feel judged by anyone so of course he tried to push it on me.
When I divorced my husband, who I put through school in Greece at a cost of $20,000, supported through another school in the U.S. and rented a two-bedroom apartment so his sister (who didn’t speak English) could come stay with us during her divorce he actually said to me, “If you think you’re resentful, then I’m 10 times more resentful.”
I was flabbergasted. I couldn’t comprehend it. How was it possible? How did this man, who I’d spent five years crossing oceans for, think I was at fault when I was supportive?
“I really think that you have to find a partner that compliments you and is somebody that pushes you and is better at some things than you are, so they can push you to improve yourself as a person.” – Ashton Kutcher
After the fact, I realized that the issue is probably two-fold. First off, he was selfish and he thought things should be a certain way and I suppose if I couldn’t make them that way then it must sort of be my fault. Secondly, I believe that perhaps I didn’t love him in the way he needed to be loved and he was resentful. Our cultures were very different and maybe I didn’t know how to be the wife he wanted me to be.
Either way, to both of them, nothing I did was enough. They always made everything my fault, which I of course readily accepted and which was mistake number one on my part.
If you are constantly (or even more often than not) told you are to blame or their feelings are your responsibility then this person is not “The One” and they are not for you. Interactions with your partner should be fun and easygoing and you shouldn’t feel like you have to be on edge or be responsible for someone else’s feelings.
2) They never want to talk.
Yes, I’ve had one of these boyfriends.
When we first met, he would talk about some surface things like his ex-wives and why the marriages ended. He would talk about work and some of the struggles he was having. That lasted about six weeks, and then I was pretty much told he didn’t want to talk about stuff. His now adult kids were “off limits.” His mom and dad were a “nope.” His childhood? “Absolutely not.”
Eventually, the little bit of sharing went to no sharing and communication. He would come home from work, give me a kiss, and go pick up a book or play a game.
I sat alone wondering what to do. I knew something was wrong, but felt powerless to say something because I knew I would be met with resistance. So instead of doing something, I started to feel responsible for the fact that he didn’t want to share with me. I soon realized that it wasn’t my fault. He wasn’t capable of being open and showing up in an adult relationship — and clearly, neither was I.
Luckily, by this point in my life I had enough self-awareness to realize what was going on. About three months later, I ended things. It was the best decision I ever made.
What makes a couple last and what makes them strong are the moments they share together in complete vulnerability. Anything less is a surface relationship. But maybe that’s not what you want, and that’s okay, too.
When you are with someone, you need to feel safe sharing who you are, what you’re about, what you fear, and what moves you as a human being — and vice versa. Men may not share as readily, and that’s okay, but they will share when they feel safe and supported.
3) They take more than they give
I am the queen of giving in relationships, which is a problem a lot of women have. We give and give and give and forget to ask or are afraid to ask or don’t know how to ask for anything and eventually we become resentful and pissed and then we’re done.
Everyone is different and some people are more selfish than others. If you are a natural giver then it is extremely hard to be with a fundamentally selfish person because your boundaries are not set up to stop giving all the time and you become exhausted.
In the past I had a tendency to attract selfish boyfriends. At least three of them were extremely selfish and I don’t think they really thought much about my needs and because I was so bad at thinking about my own needs they were never met.
Relationships are give and take and it doesn’t always mean a 50/50 split. Sometimes one person gives more and that’s entirely okay. But, if you find yourself doing all the giving then you should be concerned.
However, this comes with a caveat. If you say, I cook and clean and do the laundry and care for the kids and he does nothing, but in fact he is working super hard and bringing home money and paying the mortgage and the bills then you really aren’t giving more. He is giving what he believes he needs to give and what he should give. What you aren’t getting is support emotionally and it’s your job to communicate what you do need in a healthy manner.
I’m currently in a relationship where I am happy. I rarely feel taken advantage of or like I’m giving more than I should. Life isn’t perfect and neither is your mate, but if you are with someone who doesn’t give back then they aren’t “The One” and it’s time to move on.
You know when you know
Most of us know if someone is “The One,” even when we don’t want to admit it. Most of us spend weeks or months or years sitting with a certain uneasiness or dissatisfaction that we know isn’t right but we keep going on in the hopes suddenly one day it will change. Let’s face it: there are some people that you simply cannot change.
For the first time in my life, I’m with someone who is secure. I don’t feel a constant fear of loss or fear that I’ll say the wrong thing and suddenly he’ll put up walls and run away (okay, I feel them a little bit, but his reassurance has made it so that it’s very rare).
With my previous partners, even if I thought they were “The One,” something felt off deep down. All in all, don’t cling to a false hope because you WANT them to be “The One.” Be honest with yourself and take a hard look at who you are, what you want, and what your relationship really represents. It should represent all the wonderful, beautiful, amazing things about love, life and partnership and if it doesn’t then why are you in it? Think about it.
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Originally published on AcingLife.com.