Uncertainty in relationships: 6 things a loving partner doesn’t do

If you can’t figure out how your partner feels about you and are struggling to share a connection with them, these points will help you gain clarity.
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Are you in a relationship where the partner pushes you to behave a certain way, ignores your advice, disregards your opinions, or doesn’t appreciate your efforts? If your answer is yes, then you may have been taken for granted by them. That’s when you should re-evaluate your relationship and decide if it is worth the emotional pain and distress.

It can be easy to miss these red flags when you are deeply in love with your partner. You may even choose to ignore some of their behaviours and aspects that make you feel uncomfortable. But if you continue to overlook these small but significant signs of disrespect over time, it can affect your self-esteem, lower your confidence and lead to self-doubt. You will repeatedly look to meet your partner’s unrealistic expectations and second-guess yourself by asking questions like ‘Am I good enough?’ or ‘Am I smart enough?’

Therefore, it is important to notice the irritants and behaviours that make you feel unloved and communicate them with your partner. This can help fix the situation and keep your relationship from turning sour. A loving partner is someone who pays attention to the little things such as showing up on time, being there for you in times of need, giving you enough space, and appreciating you for all that you do.

If you are wondering whether your partner loves you at all, here are a few things that a loving partner will never do.

Rarely listens to you

When you actively listen to each other’s needs, emotions and perspectives, you make your relationship stronger. A study shows that active listening, especially during stressful situations, leads to higher relationship satisfaction. A loving partner will never interrupt you when you are speaking. They will give you their undivided attention and put their agenda and needs aside, making you feel valued and heard. On the other hand, a partner who doesn’t care about you will never put your needs first and will pick fights unnecessarily. They will not be interested in hearing about your likes, dislikes and your friends or family. If you come across such behaviour, take it seriously and talk to your partner. And this time, make sure that they listen.

Disrespects your boundaries

Boundaries are important to keep a relationship strong and healthy. They are the limits you put in place to protect your wellbeing and honour your own needs and feelings by defining what you are comfortable with and how you would like to be treated. For instance, if your partner checks your phone behind your back, goes through your belongings without your consent, or asks you to do something against your wishes, these are all signs of disrespecting your boundaries. According to psychotherapist Deborah Hecker, “Boundaries protect our sense of personal identity and help guard against being overwhelmed by the demand of others.” A loving partner will never invade your personal space or ask you to do things you’re not comfortable with.

Tries to manipulate you

Do you ever feel like questioning your choices, decisions, or your own sanity? If that happens, it could be due to emotional manipulation by your partner. It is an unhealthy strategy used by individuals who are incapable of asking what they want directly. For example, does your partner constantly make you feel guilty for a mistake you made ages ago? Do they twist your words into something ugly and start a fight about it? A loving partner will never use such tactics to feel secure in a relationship. American therapist Sharie Stines, who specialises in abuse and toxic relationships, told Time, “People who are trying to manipulate others are trying to control others.” This type of manipulation is so sneaky and devious that it can make you feel like you are not in control of your thoughts and actions. If you find yourself with such a person, look for a way to get out of the relationship.

Keeps your relationship a secret

Everyone is entitled to a private life, but keeping your relationship a secret in the guise of privacy is an unhealthy trait. Relationship expert Gina Daniel told Bustle, “If someone loves you enough to want to be with you, they should at least let people know you are involved, even if it’s just at your request.” If your partner insists on keeping your relationship a secret, it shows that they are good at keeping things from others, which doesn’t exactly build trust. A loving partner will understand this and respect your desire to be open about your relationship.

Doesn’t support you

A loving partner will want you to succeed and live a healthy and happy life. They will be involved in your wellbeing and will share their opinions on how you can achieve your goals. But they will never try to discourage you or break your confidence. At times, a loving partner may even challenge you to be better, but at the same time, remain your biggest supporter. A loving partner will never make you feel bad about the choices you make in your life or the path you choose to follow.

Doesn’t spend quality time with you

If a couple wants to ensure that their relationship stays strong, they do not forget to spend quality time with each other. This means expressing love through physical and emotional intimacy. A loving partner understands how important such gestures are to keep your relationship healthy. They won’t be scrolling through their phone or thinking about other things when they are with you. They will cherish every minute you are together because they genuinely enjoy spending time with you. If your partner doesn’t give you quality time, it’s a sign that your relationship needs work.

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