Are You The Insignificant Other?

Signs your relationship is at the end of its season

The Insignificant Other, Signs your relationship has reached the end of its season, by Pamela Simmonds

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Do you remember when you first met your partner? When your relationship was new? The urgency you felt to see them when you weren’t together. The butterflies you felt when you saw them. Connecting on the phone or texting into the wee hours of the morning.

Do you still get them?

The butterflies?

Or do you sit and dream about those long-ago days, yearning for the excitement you felt, wondering what the hell happened and how you can recapture that feeling?

Are you wondering where your relationship is heading or if it has the staying power of forever?

Some relationships are only made to last a season rather than a lifetime. So how do you know if yours is at the end of a season or if it can weather the storms? How do you know when it is the right time to call it a day and move on?

You reflect and analyze. You look for the telltale signs that maybe it’s over. If you are reading this, maybe your subconscious is on to something that your conscious mind refuses to acknowledge. Life is too short to stay with someone just to avoid being alone. Time is much too valuable for that.

Let’s look at some of those worrisome signs.

The butterflies have left the building

Every relationship starts with a good dose of chemistry. But as time goes on that attraction will fluctuate and eventually taper off a little.

But it shouldn’t disappear!

If you look over at your partner and absolutely nothing sparks, then maybe it’s time to reconsider where the relationship is going.

Maybe that guy or gal has changed.

Maybe you have.

Either way, if there isn’t any sexual attraction then what you have is not a viable romantic relationship. What you have is a friendship, which may or may not include sex on occasion because of a sense of duty.

Sexual attraction is important. If you don’t have it and you stay together, one of you will eventually meet someone who does set off the sparks and then the relationship is ripe for infidelity and betrayal.

Healthy relationships have chemistry. You should look at your partner and think Wow! She’s mine, or God, I love his (insert favorite feature here — ass, eyes, personality — whatever). There are sparks!

Yeah, you are probably out of the honeymoon, behave like wild bunnies, stage but you still want to get busy with them. You kiss, you hold hands, you feel a little something-something.

You shouldn’t feel like you’d rather be somewhere, anywhere, else.

And if you look at your partner and feel repulsed — then you are definitely with the wrong person and you need to release them so they can also have a chance to find someone they are compatible with. Holding on is not doing either one of you any good.

WWE ain’t got nothin’ on you

It’s healthy to disagree every once in a while. But if all you ever do is fight, then maybe it’s time to get gone.

Healthy relationships have conflicts that are discussed rationally. Healthy relationships have compromise and issues get resolved.

On the other hand, an unhealthy relationship has a constant atmosphere of conflict. Unhealthy relationships are one-sided and out of balance. Fighting all the time is unhealthy.

Yelling at each other constantly, physically fighting, throwing things, or any other form of violent behavior is a definite sign that the relationship is toxic and it’s time to get out.

Any type of controlling behaviors like demanding to spend all your time together, or needing to show your partner your messages and not allowing one or the other to have friends are also toxic and are obvious signs that the relationship should dissolve.

Essentially, if y’all can’t get along, then what’s the point? There is no future in a relationship of constant conflict. Say your good-byes and move on.

You’re steamrolling esteem

Right up there with fighting is a lack of respect. If your relationship is in a place where you don’t have respect for your partner or they don’t have any for you, then maybe time’s up.

If you talk down to each other or belittle each other, then you are not with the right person.

If you are using tones and words with each other that you wouldn’t use with family or friends, then you need to take a long hard look at your relationship and find out why.

You should have feelings of pride and adoration for one another. Not contempt.

Healthy relationships have respect as a cornerstone. You show kindness and appreciation to each other. You support each other’s goals and aspirations. You each have good self-esteem.

If you are not getting respect or giving it, then you are with the wrong person.

Discourse has the floor

If your relationship has strife more than bliss and contentment, then it’s probably time to move on. You may not be having all-out arguments and fights with slamming doors and name-calling, but if the overall atmosphere is unhappy, then maybe it’s time to pack.

Relationships are supposed to enrich our lives, not bring us to the point of depression.

Now, there could be underlying reasons for the general unhappiness that can be worked out. And maybe you love each other enough to put in that work and get past whatever is causing the unhappiness.


But if unhappiness is an ongoing thing and there are constant issues that remain unresolved for most of the time you’ve been together, then that’s your sign. Sayonara.

The Elephant has taken up residence

You know the one.

That big thing that never gets talked about.

Or anything, for that matter. Because neither of you is communicating with the other.

Relationships need trust, honesty, understanding, and communication.

If you never talk about anything, then nothing ever gets resolved. If you never talk about anything, how can you plan a future?

Healthy relationships are partnerships. Partnerships with long term goals. You both need to be clear on where the relationship is going and whether your visions for the future are aligned. If they are not then it is time to move along. But you’ll never know if you never talk.

You are not going to change someone. A harsh fact that is hard to face.

Let’s say you want to own a home and have a family, but your partner has always envisioned themselves traveling the world and never wants kids. The reality is that you aren’t a compatible couple. Face it and move on.

You might be able to come to a compromise and stay together, but someone is eventually going to resent not following their authentic self. And the relationship will suffer anyway. Isn’t it better to communicate and find out now than to spend twenty plus years together and hate them for it later? And it will be especially more complicated once children are involved.

But if you never talk, you’ll never know. You have to ask yourself why. Why aren’t you discussing those important things?

Life is too short to spend it with the wrong, incompatible person.

What to do?

Take a little time and look into the depths of your relationship. Reflect on how it feels. Look for those red flags. Trust your gut instincts. Your inner self knows.

Analyze your motives for staying. If the signs are there, you need to be honest with yourself about whether or not you are still in love with this person. If you are, then start putting in the work to bring your relationship back to a healthy place.

But if you are not, then you need to be kind to yourself and your partner. Don’t stay for the wrong reasons. You are both worth more than that.

You may just find that it’s time to move on without that person because the relationship you are clinging to is preventing you from finding the relationship that is right for you.

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