Dating in college can be quite the challenge. F*ck, dating can be difficult, period. And nothing is harder than realizing that the person you’re currently with might not be the one you should stay with.
Now, don’t get it twisted. I am no relationship master. But with a few failed relationships underneath my $12 belt, I feel that I, a well-meaning idiot, should pass on my albeit limited and biased advice. So here we go.
1. You’re not as compatible as you thought.
Compatibility is a complicated thing. It’s more than just having a few common interests or similar personality traits. It’s much deeper than that. According to Nancy Slotnick, dating coach and founder of Matchmaker Cafe, compatibility is a respect for each others’ worlds.
“People assume compatibility as a baseline requirement, then want more. I want him to fit in with my family and do all the things I love to do – and he should be sexy, and he should take me out to cool places,” Slotnick says in a Psychology.com article. If that mutual respect is missing, you might want to consider other people.
2. You’re in two completely different places in your life.
If you’re a serial monogamist like I am, the minute you get into a relationship you automatically think of where the two of you will be 10 years down the line. While worrying too much about the future is certainly not a good habit, only living in the now isn’t exactly the healthiest alternative. If you and your SO’s lives seem to be heading in different directions, a breakup may be in order. Now, this just doesn’t mean physically (while it’s certainly included). It includes emotional and mental too, folks.
3. They’re nice to you, but a complete a-hole to everyone else.
A person who knows they’re an a*shole but doesn’t do anything to change their behavior is not a personality that’s conducive to a healthy relationship. In fact, in my opinion, it’s worse than a person who doesn’t know they’re an a*shole. I get it. Their blunt honesty and “bold” actions might be refreshing at first, but trust me, it’s going to get old fast. Sure, they’re nice to you NOW. But what about when they get comfortable around you? If they’re an a*shole to wait staff, their friends and their loved ones, they’ll be an a*shole to you. You don’t need that stress in your life. Leave them.
4. You have different fundamental beliefs.
The term “opposites attract” is perfectly fine when discussing small things. You like chocolate ice cream, he likes vanilla ice cream. You like rock n’ roll, while she likes rap. You’re a Christian, while they’re Jewish. It’s not fine when one of you is a serial monogamist and the other wants an open relationship. You are doomed to fail. There are some differences that people can work through. Other differences are going to make your relationship implode. If your end goal is marriage and they have no interest in it, it’s not going to end well. Know the differences.
5. There’s no more spark.
Some relationships aren’t meant to last forever. Some relationships age like wine, others age like lunch meat (i.e. not well). That doesn’t mean that it wasn’t fun while it lasted. Don’t hold on to something that wasn’t never meant to last. Don’t hold on to curdled milk and pretend it’s cottage cheese.
6. You find yourself more unhappy than you do happy when you’re with them.
It seems like a no brainer, but can be harder than you think. If you find yourself lying about your happiness when you’re with them, it’s time to dip. Denial is not a river that you want to swim in. So ditch the water wings, dry yourself off and face reality.
7. You want to break up.
Sometimes trusting your gut is your best bet. You are under no obligation to stay in a relationship that you don’t want to be in. If you want to break up, then break up.
Stay safe, and do what makes you happy! Never forget that you are your first priority.
image credits: cover photo