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42 Red Flags & Signs It’s Time to End Your Relationship & Move On for Good

Are the emotional connection and physical intimacy gone? Do you question whether you’re still in love with your partner? Learn when it’s time to leave a relationship with these signs. It’s time to see a future without them!

when to end a relationship

When you enter into a romantic relationship with someone, you don’t expect it to fail. You have high hopes and look forward to a promising future with the one you’ve fallen in love with. You don’t expect to have to recognize when to end a long-term relationship, because you don’t see it ever ending.

But not all relationships work out perfectly, even if you two seemed perfect for each other. Over time, you might realize that this person just isn’t right for you, or the relationship became toxic and you can’t see a way to make things better.

Knowing when to end a relationship is always a hard thing to do when your mind is clouded with hope and love.

But it’s important to know when to break up with your partner and move on. Otherwise, you’ll waste your time with someone who gives you nothing but misery. [Read: 18 clear and critical signs of an unhealthy relationship

Some relationships end, and that’s okay

Every relationship has its ups and downs, without everything turning to turmoil. But when the downs outnumber the ups, it may be time to start thinking about ending your relationship.

Now, we never want to be one to tell someone when their relationship is over, but there are signs that everyone should be aware of.

Any relationship can go through a tough time and come out better than ever. But occasionally, people may think they’re in a “rut” only to be in that “rut” for years on end.

So, how can you tell when the rut is something more than just a downfall in the relationship?

It’s important to know when it’s time to move on and to be okay with it. Not all relationships last; in fact, the vast majority don’t! That’s a pretty depressing statement, we know, but it’s the truth.

It’s not easy to leave a relationship with someone you still love, but putting yourself first and knowing when to walk away is key. [Read: 23 big questions and steps to leave someone you love and not regret it]

A classic example …

Love may sometimes be blind, but it shouldn’t stay blind for the majority of the time. When you’re in love with someone, it’s easy to look past their faults and focus on their better points.

At first, it’s easy to say that your partner will change for the better, that they will learn, or that true love is stronger than a bunch of annoying pet peeves.

However, there will come a time when you’ll be tired of making excuses. You’ll find that your partner is no closer to learning from their mistakes, and it seems like there’s no hope for change.

You’ll eventually learn that love can’t cure huge character flaws. Before long, you’ll suddenly wake up one day and ask yourself, “what have I been doing with this person?”

You may have already spotted a couple of warning signs that this relationship may not be heading anywhere. You may have already seen the little signs telling you that this relationship isn’t one of your best ideas. [Read: Depressing reasons love dies in a relationship]

Signs it’s time to end the relationship with someone you love

So, are you happy or unhappy in love? Here are some clear signs that can help you understand if you’re in a relationship that isn’t worth holding on to. Can you relate to at least a few of these signs in your own relationship?

All of us have our own thresholds when it comes to sacrifices and enduring pain in the hope that things will get better in our relationship.

But if you feel like you’re fighting a losing battle while trying to bring happiness into your romance, ask yourself if you see these signs in your own love life. [Read: The 80 20 rule in relationships that make love work for you]

1. The spark is missing

You don’t know why you’re in the relationship anymore. The romance is missing, there’s no chemistry or companionship between you two, and both of you just exist in each other’s lives without any special reason.

When the spark has gone, it may be time to move on.

2. You’re hurting

You’re misunderstood, hurt, or angry all the time. Sometimes, you don’t even know why, but just thinking of your partner hurts or annoys you.

And sadly, even if you haven’t given this a thought, you haven’t been happy for a very long time. [Read: 16 silly bad habits that can hurt your relationship]

3. You’re being taken for granted

Your partner uses you, manipulates your understanding nature, and takes you for granted, no matter how nice you are to them.

You’ve been doing all the giving, hoping your partner will see how selfless and loving you are. You hope they’ll change for the better someday. Chances are, they won’t. [Read: Are you being taken for granted? – 16 very clear signs]

4. You don’t see a future

You’re satisfied with your relationship, and you’re happy-ish. But every time you try to see where your relationship is going, your mind tells you that your relationship has no future. And as hard as you try to visualize a perfect tomorrow, you can’t see your partner as a long-term lover.

This is one of the biggest signs it’s time to move on.

5. Your partner is uninvolved

When one partner doesn’t care enough to play an active part in their other half’s life, nor do they even try to understand their life, it doesn’t mean anything good.

They’re emotionally uninvolved and unavailable, even when you try to make them feel included.

6. Sexual intimacy is becoming rare

You can’t remember the last time you had sex with your partner. You’ve tried your best to bring the sizzle back into the bedroom, but your partner prefers to turn the other way and feign sleep.

It feels worse when you catch your partner admiring others when both of you are walking down the street. [Read: Naughty, sexy, and fun ways to make long-term sex feel like a one-night stand]

7. You can’t think of what holds you together anymore

Are you in this relationship only because of the baggage that holds the both of you together? If you’re not together because of love, then you’re only fooling yourself if you believe it’ll ever bring you happiness.

Perhaps you can’t even pinpoint what holds you together anymore; you’re just there because of habit and history. In that case, it’s time to move on.

8. There are deep trust issues

You don’t trust your partner anymore. There may be a genuine reason for the lack of trust, or perhaps both of you just have different expectations from each other when it comes to trust and believing in each other.

But unless you overcome all of this, the love will only fade even more. [Read: The fastest way to get over trust issues in your romance]

9. You’re living different lives

There are no meaningful conversations between you. You have nothing to talk about beyond small talk because outside of your relationship, your values, vision, and expectations from life are completely different from your partner’s views. Also, neither of you has taken the initiative to find common ground.

10. Every argument takes you back to square one

It happens all the time. You have a big fight and you make up with plenty of love and affection. But in what seems like no time at all, the same issues crop up all over again, and the cycle repeats itself.

Can you ever evolve as a couple if the same issues stagnate your lives and stop both of you from bonding as a couple? [Read: The secrets of a love-hate relationship – Can it ever work?]

11. Controlling behavior

People with insecure personalities don’t always confront their partner. Instead, they use manipulation, aggression, and subtle controlling behavior to manipulate you into believing they’re right and you’re wrong.

Before you know it, you feel lost and all alone because you lost all your friends. They’re controlling everything you do without you even realizing it.

If you find yourself behaving based on how your partner wants you to, that’s when it’s time to part ways so you can put yourself back on track. [Read: 15 shocking and yet subtle signs of a controlling partner]

12. You don’t feel important to your partner

Your partner constantly goes overboard to please another person just to impress them and win their fancy. But they’d never ever do anything like that for you.

In the end, you just feel like you’re not at all important and this makes you question everything about your relationship. Is it time to move on? [Read: 20 obvious signs of a people pleaser]

13. Your partner picks at your faults all the time

Your partner makes you feel inadequate in the relationship constantly. They treat you like you’re not good enough and never find the good in anything you do.

They break you emotionally, and always expect you to change for them because you’re not good enough in their eyes. The truth is that you’re more than good enough and you need to see this as a sign that you need to end the relationship.

14. You don’t enjoy their company anymore

You dread spending time with your partner, unless there are other people in the group. Every time you have to spend some *quality* time together, it makes you feel uncomfortable and as though you have nothing to talk about. [Read: 18 relationship turn offs that can ruin your romance!]

15. There’s a distinct lack of respect

Do you respect your partner as an individual? Does your partner respect you? To make a relationship work, respect for one another plays a very big part.

If there’s no respect for each other, or one person doesn’t show respect to the other, there’s surely no hope for the future.

16. Arguments are very frequent

It’s completely natural for couples to argue occasionally. In fact, it’s healthy, and part of a loving relationship *to a degree*. But, when you’re fighting every day of the week with little relief, then there are bigger issues at play.

Your arguments should never become so excessive that you’re struggling to get through the day with your partner. This can lead to increased stress and, ultimately, have an ill effect on your health. [Read: Relationship arguments – 25 dos and don’ts to remember]

17. When you do argue, it’s always about pointless things

It’s not just that you’re having a lot of disagreement, it’s that the things you argue about really don’t matter. Perhaps one of you forgot to put the garbage out or didn’t do the dishes. Maybe one of you came home a little later than normal.

Tiny things start major arguments, and that’s not good. If none of you are willing to try to actively work on solving this issue, it’s probably time to move on. [Read: 18 relationship turn offs that can ruin a perfect romance]

18. You’re annoyed with your partner more than you’re not

Does the sound of them chewing too loudly irk you, to the point that you have to leave the room, stomping your feet and scoffing at them? Yes? Then it might be a sign for when to end a relationship.

You should want to be around your partner if you really care about them, not running the other way every time they enter a room. If you are, then there’s probably a deeper problem.

19. The things you used to find attractive no longer grab you

Perhaps you used to think the way they smiled was super cute, but now you just don’t see any attraction in it. Maybe you found the fact they enjoyed sport really endearing, but these days, it annoys you more than you find it sexy.

The things they do and have always done are a part of who they are. If you find yourself not liking anything about them, you’re just not into them anymore. [Read: 20 signs you’re not attracted to your partner and how to spark it up again]

20. You don’t really care what they think of you anymore

We don’t care if you’ve been together for two weeks or two decades, you; you should always care about what your partner thinks of you.

They are supposed to be the person you look to for advice, counseling, and support. If you just don’t care about any of that anymore, what are you even doing? [Read: Undeniable signs you’ll break up in a few months]

21. The thought of losing them doesn’t scare you

When should you end a relationship? When you can picture a life without them, it doesn’t upset you. If you really love someone, then you will always want them in your life.

The thought of losing them should scare you. If it doesn’t, then maybe it’s time to move on.

22. You feel like a burden

If it feels like you’re pulling teeth when you ask your partner to visit your family or friends or accompany you to an important event, something is clearly wrong. Your partner should want to be with you and support you in all situations without making you feel needy.

This can go for them, too. If you feel frustrated and reluctant when they want you to go with them to important things in their lives, something is off, and you should do some self-reflection.

Maybe it’s time to find someone who will make you feel that things are never forced and that they truly need and want to be with you. [Read: 20 sure signs your relationship is oh-so-over already]

23. You don’t talk about the future anymore

It’s healthy for a relationship to grow and plan for the future. You don’t necessarily have to talk about kids, marriage, or anything like that.

But if you stop making plans for even a month or two months down the road, it’s a sign that you don’t see yourselves with each other.

We mentioned an earlier sign that you don’t see them in your future, but if you stop making very short-term plans altogether, you’ve already checked out.

24. The relationship makes you feel insecure

Do you feel like your significant other is going to bolt at the first opportunity? Well, maybe they are feeling that way too. If you feel like you are losing your partner little by little, and you’re uncertain of their feelings for you, that’s when to end a relationship.

Only feeling secure and happy when your partner is in the same room as you is a sure-fire sign that things are not right. You’re headed down an unhealthy road. [Read: Subtle signs you or your partner are clearly starting to fall out of love]

25. You feel the need to “watch” yourself

Do you constantly feel like you’re walking on eggshells around your special someone? Feeling this way is unhealthy and extremely damaging to your emotional and mental wellbeing.

This is certainly not a healthy relationship. You should be able to be yourself around your significant other, and they should love you for that.

Hiding who you are for their sake is a sign that it’s finally time to end the relationship and move on. [Read: Signs you’re walking on eggshells in your love life]

26. You’ve lost the feelings you once had

Many people feel that if they’ve been with someone for a long time, they should “try to make it work.” But what is there to make work, when you know deep down that you no longer feel the same way about them?

Don’t put their happiness above your own. As much as it might hurt them—and you— to let go, if you have lost feelings for your partner and no longer have the desires you once did, then it’s time to end things—for both of your sakes. [Read: 18 critical signs to watch out for in an unhealthy relationship]

27. There is deliberate distance between you

Remember the first weeks of your relationship? Remember that uneasy restlessness you felt whenever you were apart?

Now, the tables have turned. You suddenly feel tired with your routine get-togethers and start to skip calls, emails, and other forms of communication.

Gradually, you need time alone, you postpone dates, dinners, vacations, etc., while coming up with plausible excuses. [Read: 15 reasons why you’re getting bored with your relationship]

28. You’re often withdrawn around them

Your partner is telling you about home and work troubles, something exciting they saw online, or all the usual stuff you guys used to talk about when going out. Your partner has been going at it for minutes when they startle you with a question that you clumsily respond to because you’re preoccupied with wayward thoughts.

You’ve seen it in movies before; you’re imagining your other happy place while the other person’s voice blurs into an incoherent droning. All of a sudden, they snap you from your reverie with, “hey, are you all right?” [Read: Telltale signs your relationship is doomed]

29. You think about your exit plan

This one screams impending breakup. You’re secretly planning how you’re going to tell your partner that you’re done. It also includes a “logistics” checklist of your stuff, which you’ll be taking in case you’ll be moving out.

You ponder locations to stay in case you get kicked out. So you have a speech, a safe house, and all your belongings. The only thing missing is the right moment to set your plans in action. [Read: How to leave a narcissist and free yourself from their web of control]

30. You’re being used

Do you notice that your partner often asks you for favors? Or they hang around you when you’ve got cash, but they’re flaky when you’re a little broke? Do you often feel like your relationship mostly revolves around sex?

These may be some of the telltale signs that your partner is using you.

Helping your partner out is part of being in a relationship. But when you notice that your partner is only around when they need something, you may be the victim of a user.

Sometimes, it truly feels nice to be needed. However, money and sex shouldn’t be the only things you want from your partner. So when you find out that you can hardly ask them for the littlest favor, then it’s a different story. [Read: Sure signs you’re just being used]

31. They try to change you

It’s a huge red flag if you notice that your partner is changing who you are as a person.

The desire to change should come from you, and these changes should be made because you believe that this will make you a better person.

If you’ve changed as a result of your partner telling you to become someone else, this could be a sign that your partner doesn’t accept you for who you are. [Read: Signs your partner is manipulating you]

32. You can never predict their mood

One minute, everything’s fine and dandy, and the next minute your partner explodes into a fit of rage that even the Richter scale would pick up on. When you’re in love, you may just brush it off and think that’s fine and is one of those things that just happens.

But eventually, you’ll realize that it can be tiring when these dramatic swings happen. You might feel like a hostage on their emotional rollercoaster.

33. They have anger issues

People who have anger issues genuinely need help. Since they’re not completely able to control their rage, they may come off as abusive. Sometimes, those who have anger issues have become very good at apologizing and trying to make amends.

However, unless they actually seek help to be able to control their temper issues, you never know when they might have another episode that could turn violent, especially if you are living together.

In terms of when to end a relationship, this is a big point to remember. Always put yourself first. [Read: Ways to handle dating someone with anger issues]

34. They’re very possessive and jealous

Often, these traits are grounded in insecurity. You may be flattered at first because it seems like your partner never wants to lose you. However, in time, you may notice that their jealousy can become irrational.

Simply talking to someone of the opposite sex can trigger a barrage of accusations that you’re being too flirtatious with another person.

When you’re dating someone who’s too jealous and possessive, it can sometimes feel like they have a chokehold on you all the time. And this is usually what leads to conflicts, and finally, a breakup. [Read: 17 signs of a jealous and possessive boyfriend]

35. Too much secretive behavior

Have you ever asked your partner something, and their response is to shrug off the question? This is fine, especially if you’re in a new relationship and your partner would prefer to keep some things private.

However, if you’ve been together for a while, there should be some trust and honesty, especially if it’s about something that could potentially affect your relationship. You deserve to know the important things about the person you’re with.

36. A constant stream of lies

This is possibly one of the biggest red flags in a relationship. If you relate to this, that tells you that you should end your relationship.

It tells you that your partner is keeping something from you. When you catch your partner lying about something, it may be because they are up to something behind your back.

It can be hard to build trust with someone who’s constantly fibbing. And without trust, what kind of relationship do you really have? [Read: Sneakily accurate ways to spot a lying girlfriend]

37. They’re always emotionally distant

Some people may find it hard to open up, and it can require a lot of patience until your partner does. But if you feel like you’re the only one who’s emotionally available, your partnership can start to feel a little one-sided.

After some time, you may start to feel like you’re the only one who’s constantly trying to reach out. [Read: Giveaways of an emotionally unavailable man]

38. They never take responsibility and apologize

This can be a sign that your partner values their pride more than your relationship. “Sorry” can be one of the hardest things to say.

But if your partner is always blaming you for things that go wrong or they refuse to acknowledge that they did something wrong, how can you expect to start patching up your relationship?

It just means your partner won’t take responsibility for their actions, and that in itself can also be a sign of immaturity. [Read: 28 heartfelt ways to say you’re sorry and apologize to someone you love]

39. They don’t keep your secrets

When you’re in a relationship with someone, you’d expect that they would be trustworthy enough to keep your secrets, right? However, there are some people who just can’t keep these things to themselves, and you feel like you can’t trust them with these secrets.

Telling other people about things you’d rather keep private is a sign that your partner is being inconsiderate of your feelings. It’s irresponsible and in bad taste.

Do you want to be with someone who insists on airing your dirty laundry to people who have no business knowing what’s going on in your relationship? It’s a clear sign that the relationship has to end.

40. You never argue – you both avoid confrontation at all costs

When you want to talk to your partner about a serious matter, the least they could do is listen, right? This shows that they actually care about what you have to say.

But when your partner practically falls off the face of the earth when you need to talk about something, what does this tell you? [Read: Are relationship fights normal? 15 signs you’re fighting too often]

It would seem that your partner is only there when things are going great. But when the going gets tough, they walk the other way or turn into a brick wall. Not only is it rude, but it’s also a sign that they can’t face problems in a healthy way.

But perhaps you’re both guilty of doing this. For sure, too many arguments aren’t a good thing, but having zero arguments isn’t realistic, either.

41. Your values aren’t in alignment

It’s important to talk about values early in any relationship, so you know that you’re compatible. But, if after a while you start to notice that your and your partner’s values are incompatible, it can be a major issue.

For instance, if you want children in the future and they don’t, that’s going to cause a major issue. If they want to get married and you don’t believe in it, that’s going to be a sticking point.

These things can’t always be compromised on, and in many ways, they shouldn’t. [Read: Self-concept – How we create and develop it to control our happiness]

42. Constant cheating

Cheating doesn’t have to be a full stop to a relationship. It’s a deal breaker for many, but there are just as many couples who overcome cheating and make their relationship stronger.

However, if you’ve discovered that your partner is constantly being unfaithful, it is nothing more than disrespectful and an unrecoverable betrayal.

If you want to know when to let go of the relationship, this is one of the most common reasons. [Read: What is cheating in a relationship? The truth most people ignore]

Is it time to move on?

It’s easy to assume that you’ll know when a relationship is over, but it’s not that simple. When you’re still in love but things aren’t going well, you’ll make every excuse to stick around and try to make it work as you think that the relationship is worth saving. The problem is, some things just can’t be worked out.

It’s easy to think of the big things that may cause you to end a relationship, but sometimes it’s the small things that start to rot a union from the inside out that cause the most damage.

If you’re noticing many of these signs, you already know when it’s time to call it quits. It’s now. You deserve better and you will get it if you give yourself the time to heal.

Ending a relationship after spending many years together is never simple and isn’t always easy, but if things become hurtful, it’s definitely time to let go, even if you’re still in love with them.

However, if you feel your relationship still has some life left in it, there’s only one way forward – communication.

Talk things through, try and come up with a plan, and both put the effort in to fix things. Without that, the relationship is doomed to fail and it’s time to move on.

[Read: Undeniable signs you’ll break up in a few months]

How many of these signs are you experiencing right now? And how many of these are acceptable to you? Now, ask yourself again, are you happy in love or is it time to move on and end the relationship?

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Preeti Tewari Serai
Preeti Serai
Preeti, the founder of LovePanky, is an eternal optimist and believer in the beauty of love and life. With an exhaustive experience in love, relationships, and ...