When Your Relationship Isn’t What You Want

Man sits across the table from his crying partner at a restaurant.

There are times in every relationship when things get tough, and you may find yourself wondering whether or not it's worth saving. (Image: Eldar Nurkovic via Dreamstime)

There are times in every relationship when things get tough. Are you wondering if your relationship is worth saving? If so, you’re not alone. A lot of people find themselves in this situation. The good news is that there are a few things you can do to help you decide whether or not your relationship is worth fighting for.

Is your relationship worth saving?

1. Look at the big picture

When you’re trying to decide whether or not your relationship is worth saving, it’s important to take a step back and look at the big picture. What are your goals for the future? Do you see yourself with this person in five, ten, or twenty years? If the answer is yes, then you need to think twice before taking any drastic step.

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On the other hand, if you can’t see yourself with this person in the future, then it might be time to move on. It’s not always easy to end a relationship, but it’s usually better than sticking around and being unhappy.

2. Evaluate your relationship

In order to determine if your relationship is worth saving, you need to evaluate it. What are the good things about your relationship? And what are the bad things? If there are more bad things than good things, then it’s probably not worth saving. However, if there are more good things than bad things, then it’s worth taking a closer look.

Listing out the good and bad things in your relationship may help you make a decision.
Listing out the good and bad things in your relationship may help you make a decision. (Image: Apichon Pechnun via Dreamstime)

It might also help to ask your partner how they feel about the relationship. If they’re happy, then this is a good sign that things could be worked out. However, if your partner seems unhappy or confused, you’ll need to figure out why before moving forward.

3. Talk things out

If you think your relationship is worth saving but are still unsure, consider talking things over with your partner. Make sure both of you are ready to listen because sometimes even having the conversation can make things worse instead of better. That being said, there’s no harm in trying! Sometimes just saying what you’re feeling right out loud helps clarify your thoughts and makes it easier for both people to step back and see the big picture.

4. Take a break

If you and your partner are struggling to communicate or simply can’t seem to get along, it might be time to take a break. This doesn’t mean breaking up, it just means taking some time away from each other in order to reassess things. It can be really helpful to do this when you’re feeling overwhelmed or confused.

During the break, you should both focus on yourselves and what you want for the future. This is a good opportunity to figure out if you truly want to save your relationship or if it’s time to move on.

5. Seek professional help

If you’ve tried all of the above and still can’t decide if your relationship is worth saving, it might be time to seek professional help. This can be a really effective way to get some outside perspective and figure out what you should do next.

African American couple sitting on a sofa talking to a therapist.
You may want to get an outside perspective to help figure out what you should do next. (Image: Milkos via Dreamstime)

Therapists are trained to help people work through their problems and they can often provide valuable insight into relationships. If you’re feeling lost, confused, or unhappy, talking to a therapist could be the best decision you ever make.

6. Figure out what has gone wrong

If you want to save your relationship, it’s important to figure out what has gone wrong. This can be a difficult task, but it’s necessary if you want things to improve.

Some of the things you might need to address include communication issues, trust issues, and resentment. You’ll also need to figure out why things have gone wrong and how you can fix them. If you and your partner are willing to work on things, there’s no reason why your relationship can’t be saved.

7. You feel vulnerable without him/her

If you feel like you can’t survive without your partner, it might be time to move on. If your happiness is directly tied to the person you’re dating, this means that things are far too one-sided. And if you find yourself completely unable to function when they’re not around, this isn’t something that’s likely to change anytime soon.

It’s healthy for two people in a relationship to rely on each other for support or even just comfort. But being so dependent that you couldn’t get through the day without them isn’t healthy at all. It’s also unlikely to improve over time and could eventually become abusive. If you recognize these feelings in yourself, it might be best to go your separate ways so that both of you can find healthier relationships.

Stones arranged in shape of two hearts on a sandy beach with ocean waves and a beautiful sunset seen in the background.
Sometimes it’s best to go your separate ways so that both of you can find healthier relationships. (Image: Renedreuse via Dreamstime)

8. You guys are still best buddies

If your relationship feels more like best buddies than lovers, it might not be worth saving. This isn’t to say that you can’t be friends after a break-up, but if you’re not currently intimate or emotionally close, then there’s probably not much left to salvage.

Best buddies are great, but they should come secondary to your romantic relationship. If you find yourselves doing all the same things as before you started dating (like hanging out at the bar or going on road trips), then it’s time to move on. Otherwise, you’ll just be stuck in the same place years down the line.

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