“I’m ready to settle down,” you overhear your partner say over the phone. They’re talking to their friend who just got married, and you think they’re talking about you and your lack of enthusiasm to commit. You’ve been going out for years, and the dust has long settled since you’ve exchanged each other’s house keys.
But your relationship is on a deadlock.
People have been asking when you are going to get married, but you’ve been so used to the questions *even the side comments* that you have started to formulate your generic reaction to the whole thing: “We’re just enjoying each other’s company and taking things slow.”
Suddenly though, you notice how your partner has been dropping hints: the dream house that they want you both to live in, the baby grand piano next to the sitting room where you will both spend your sunsets together as you get old, the names of your kids, and *oh no!* even the Gatsby-inspired theme of your wedding.
Signs your partner is hinting at settling down
It’s clear, you’re not ready to settle down, but you have a nagging thought that your partner is. So here are signs that your partner is ready to take the relationship to the next level *even if you’re not*.
#1 Making it Facebook official. Your partner has already excitedly changed their relationship status from “Single” to “In a Relationship” and has tagged you to boot. Heck, they might even be itching to change it to “Engaged” as soon as they can.
They hint that you should do the same, but you tell them that there’s no need. In fact, your profile might not even display your relationship status at all. While your partner may be glad it doesn’t say “Single,” they’re still a bit annoyed at the fact that your profile doesn’t announce the fact that you’re in a relationship with them. [Read: Facebook official relationship – Are you two ready for it?]
#2 Social media life. Your partner’s profile picture is of you and them together while yours is that somber photo of your back—and you don’t plan on changing it any time soon. A look at their social media account will show them as obviously taken, and taken by you. Both of your pictures are all over their social media accounts, and your partner even posts lyrics from songs that you know are all about you.
On your end, however, the only things that bind you two together are the “Likes” your partner forces you to click on their statuses. [Read: How Facebook ruins relationships – 15 things to remember]
#3 Exchanging passwords. You have each other’s house keys, so why not exchange passwords on your social media accounts? Your partner has given you theirs, and you gave them yours, but you just changed it afterwards.
Actually, you just don’t want your partner to find out the many old messages from the flings you had before you met them. Most of all, you don’t want them finding out that you and your many exes are still friends and talking to each other. It will just alarm your partner and get you both into an argument you don’t want to deal with.
#4 Planning the holidays. Your partner is drawing long plans over where you both could spend the holidays for the next three years, and all you care about is the idea of going to every party over the next few weeks. You think about buying a new outfit for each while your partner is interested in your next bed-and-breakfast reservation.
#5 Discussing the future. Your partner is sitting you down over dinner to discuss your short and long-term goals as a couple. They flip over magazines or look at furniture stores and tell you about how they want your future house to look. As for you, the only family you’re interested in is the one you’ve been watching in that drama series. [Read: 50 relationship questions to test your compatibility instantly]
#6 The daily grind. Your partner can’t wait to tell you how their day went, and they draw out a long pause to allow you to do the same. For you however, there’s no need to keep a play-by-play, especially when they have been updating you almost every hour of every day while asking you how you are when you’ve just been sitting around in the office. You honestly just don’t care to share every detail of your day. [Read: 15 reasons you’re getting bored with your relationship]
#7 Going out with friends. Your partner expects you to not only let them know about everything that is going on in your day, you have to tell them who you’re with. Your partner gives you a complete account of where they are going, why, and with whom, and they expect that you do the same as well.
However, you believe that you are your own person, and the idea of having to ask for permission before going out with your friends on your weekly night out is absolutely ridiculous. [Read: How to handle controlling behavior in a relationship]
#8 Kissing and telling. You don’t actually kiss and tell on your partner, but you confide to your friends about your relationships, and this one is no exception. While your partner considers you their best friend, you consider your solid clique as your besties.
You bash your dates and talk about relationship problems with your friends, and they give you sound advice anyway. Meanwhile, you don’t discuss the issue straight to your partner because you feel they just won’t get you.
#9 That choking feeling. Your partner is willing to take your relationship to the next level—that wedding bells level. However, you’re still on the fence about it, or to put it bluntly, you’re still on the OTHER side of the fence and you don’t think you’ll ever jump on the other side, especially when you sometimes feel that the relationship is choking you. [Read: 16 signs you’re clearly not ready for a serious relationship]
#10 Meeting the parentals. Your partner has introduced you to their parents, and they’ve been talking to yours almost every single day. Their parents insist you call them “Mom” and “Dad,” but you seem to be tongue-tied each time, like you have absolutely no capability to do so. For you, your parents are only your biological ones, and you feel awfully strange about people who are suddenly getting so close to you.
#11 Flirting with others. Your partner may be the apple of your eye when you’re together, but sometimes, you just can’t help but take a second, more lingering look at someone who caught your eye. After all, your eyes may seem to have a mind of their own.
And when your partner is not around, you still think it’s okay to flirt a little with other people. It’s good clean fun, and it’s great for your ego, but sometimes, there’s a faint voice in your head urging you on because honestly, you are still searching for “the one.” [Read: 12 obvious signs you have big commitment issues]
#12 The ex-factor. Your partner is great and all, but there seems to be something—or someone—that is holding you back. Your ex. No matter how much you try to move on, you are still hugely hurting from your past relationship. You don’t want your current partner to be a rebound, and it’s really been years since you and your ex broke up, but you just can’t imagine yourself being with someone else other than that one person who broke your heart. [Read: 10 signs your past relationship is holding you back from a better future]
You may be caught up with so many other things—like your career, you ex, your carefree bohemian lifestyle, or simply yourself—that you just can’t see the red flags that you are presenting your partner, who is utterly in love with you. In fact, they may be so in love that they also chose to ignore these red flags, just so they can be with you.
Settling down simply because your partner shows all the signs will only result in an unhealthy relationship that will make you both unhappy and miserable in the end. So why not just be honest with your partner and tell them that you’re not on the same page yet?
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