Are you someone who seems to date a lot but can’t ever solidify a long-term relationship? If so, it’s time to face the truth that you might be self-sabotaging your own relationships. I hate to be the bearer of bad news but when you’re having trouble nailing down a solid relationship, you might have to start looking at what you could be doing wrong, instead of hurling all the blame at the other person (something we all do from time-to-time).
Of course, it might not always be your fault. You could just have horrible effing luck when it comes to love. However, you also might be inadvertently putting yourself in romantic situations where things are doomed from the get-go. It’s the worst to get really excited about someone and then see them slip right through your fingers. It sucks. It’s life and yet, if it can be prevented — we should try to avoid the feeling, right?
It’s entirely possible that you’re just dating the worst people. However, there could be a much bigger issue here that you need to acknowledge. Take a step back and look at your relationships from a different perspective. Then determine if you’re guilty of any of these things that could be major giveaways that you’re self-sabotaging your own relationships.
1. You Go Too Hard Too Fast
Being in a new relationship is super exciting. We all know the feeling. You get butterflies, you’re giddy to see them and honestly, you want to see them all the time. While this is normal, you also can’t always act on your impulses, babe. Spending too much time with someone too fast and coming on way too strong will either a) freak out the person you’re with or b) they’ll do the same and you’ll burn out too quickly. Good things take time, so start by wading into relationship waters instead of jumping into the deep end the first moment you get.
2. Trying to DTR too Soon
Truthfully, you shouldn’t even know if you want to be in a full-on relationship with someone until you’ve been seeing them for a month or two. After that, you know them well enough to determine if they’re someone you want to be with for real. If you hold off on defining the relationship (DTR), then you can get all the needed information prior to making any commitments and so can the other person in the situation.
Romance can be a whirlwind, but making a fully-educated about who you want to be dating seriously is never a bad choice. Look at Khloe Kardashian and Lamar Odom — they were married within a month of knowing each other. I’m sure Khlo wishes she’d known some things about Lammy before they decided to get hitched… and even before they started dating! (Under no circumstances should you be calling someone your boyfriend or girlfriend after just one date or hookup… Promise me that now.)
3. You Try to Change Them
People really don’t like someone trying to change who they are. Shocking, I know. But really, how would you like to start dating someone and then realize they keep telling you that you shouldn’t eat so much junk or you shouldn’t spend so much money? Really? You’d leave them. And that might be your issues.
You need to focus on finding someone who is already the type of person you want them to be, not a fixer-upper bae. Just remember that nobody will ever check off all of the qualities written down on your “list.” If you go around trying to change every person you date, you’ll be self-sabotaging your own relationships forever.
4. You Drop Your Whole Life for Them
As much as you might think this is cute and shows how much you “truly” love them, it’s actually very unhealthy and concerning. Love is one aspect of the full life you can lead which should also include family, friendships, a career, hobbies and more. It’s never okay to ditch your responsibilities just to spend time with someone new. It’s a red flag. If you notice someone you recently started dating doing this, you’d probably want to dump ’em, too!
5. You’re Not Making an Effort With Their Friends
Believe it or not, but a person’s friends have an awful lot of input on who they’re dating. If you end up meeting their friends and make a horrible impression, act like they don’t matter or even prevent that person from spending time with them, you’re definitely ruining your own relationships. Sorry, boo.
Not giving an eff about your S.O.’s buds will be a huge mistake if you want to make a relationship last.
6. You Drop the L-Bomb WAY too Soon
There are a lot of reasons people get squirmy with this word. Firstly, it’s powerful. Once you’re outside of like, middle school, it’s not something you can go around shouting to every single person you date. Saying this way too soon is almost going to guarantee that you don’t date that person for very much longer. Take your time and be certain you truly love someone before you go confessing your undying love for them. If you drop the L-bomb after two dates all the time, you’re setting yourself up for disaster. It shows you to be a little immature and a lot immature, which ultimately probably isn’t a quality many are looking for in a significant other.
7. You Take Everything Personally
Most people like to joke around and tease — especially when it comes to the person they’re seeing. Tbh, that’s basically what flirting is. Obviously, if it’s actually offensive and harmful, you have every right to be upset. However, when you take every single joke to heart and don’t have a sense of humor about it, you come across as stuck up. Nobody wants to be serious 100% of the time and when you refuse to joke around with someone, you’re showing them that’s what life with you is like.
8. You Always Need to be Right
Even if you are right, it’s okay to let the other person be right every now and then. If you always end up correcting someone — especially on little things like grammar or trivia — you’ll make them feel stupid. Who wants to be with someone who’s always making them feel dumb and who has to argue about everything? Not many.
9. You Judge Them too Harshly
Being judgemental is not a good quality. Period. Not in a girlfriend. Not in a boyfriend. Not in a friend. Learn to accept people for their differences — especially when their uniqueness isn’t actually effecting you negatively at all.
Plus, if they feel judged then they’ll feel like you’re embarrassed by them which doesn’t quite scream, “happy, long-lasting relationship!”
10. You Never Put Them First
It’s all about priorities. Dating is a big commitment. You have to be willing to put that other person high up on your priority list. If they feel like you don’t have time for them or, worse, won’t make time for them, they’ll bow out before anything gets serious. Decide if you want a real relationship before trying to date someone. If you’re too busy for a full-on relationship, be upfront with them when you realize it. There’s nothing wrong with saying, “Work is crazy but I love hanging out with you whenever we’re both free.” It may not be their ideal, but it’s better than them just feeling like the last bullet on your long list of priorities.
11. You Don’t Think About What They Want in Bed
Dating new people means you’ll be faced with a lot of different stuff in the bedroom. People like different things. You have to be willing to try new things and experiment if you want to end up in a long-term relationship. Sex is a big part of any relationship and being willing to go out of your comfort zone a little can be the difference in feeling like the relationship is having a little give-and-take as opposed to one person being pleased and the other one not being pleased.
On the other hand, if you’re a super sexual person and tend to date people less-experienced, you need to be thinking about and respecting their comfort levels. Sex is important — and just like in relationships, compromise is necessary (with proper communication beforehand, of course!).
12. You Don’t Make an Effort With Their Hobbies and Passions
You will meet people in your life who have hobbies you simply don’t understand or have never been exposed to. That’s okay! If you want to date that person, you’ve gotta show that you’re willing to learn about what they’re into. When they show their passion for something, it means they really, truly love it. Imagine someone never wanting to know or not caring about something you love with all your heart. That’s not something you’d want to be around often, is it?
13. You Freak Out When Things Start to Change
Another way you could be self-sabotaging your relationship is by being too scared. If you freak out at the first sign of a new stage in your budding romance, it’s a big red flag to the other person. It reeks of commitment issues and that’s not something a lot of people want to deal with. Calm down and realize that things will change and that it’s okay if they do. In this case, you’re the one giving off the vibe that things aren’t going well and the person you’re dating is just following suit.
14. You Don’t Communicate Your Needs
Communication is the most important part of a relationship. You need to talk about what you both need from each other. Your partner is not a mind reader. They don’t know if you need space or aren’t happy with something they’re doing. Talk about it instead of holding it all inside and then coming off and cold and distant. You’ll find that it’s much easier to be in a long-term relationship if you do.
15. You “Measure” Each Person’s Effort
By this, I mean that you’re always “keeping score” of what each person is doing for the other. When you do this, you’ll be really upset if you’re the one putting in a lot of effort more than your partner. This is harmful because you’re not even paying attention to what you’re doing for one another. It becomes strictly about quantity and not quality — and that’s not fair. Go by how you feel, not by the “numbers.”
16. You Hold Back Too Much
Relationships mean vulnerability. Come on, we all know this from the seasons-on-seasons we’ve watched of The Bachelor and The Bachelorette. You need to be real, raw and you need to be willing to show someone who you truly are deep-down. It’s not easy to open up to someone you don’t know super well but it’s an important part of growing a relationship. You’re never going to get to know them if they never really get to know you, that’s just the way it is. If you shut down and only show someone this cookie-cutter image of the person you want them to see, they’ll be able to tell. Nothing is too-good-to-be-true and if that’s the only image they see then they’ll know something about your relaysh isn’t real.