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5 signs it's time to call it quits!

Date: April 2008

When you meet a fabulous guy and fall in love, the last thing on your mind is how or when it's going to end. You might be so head-over-heels that you miss some signs that this relationship is going nowhere fast. When navigating through love relationships, what becomes important is the ability to read the telling signs of a relationship that has completed its course and when to not hang on. So, when do you really know that your love relationship is over? Admitting to any or all of these checklist items could mean it's time for you to call it quits.

1. Your needs are consistently not being met
Your beau used to add romance to just about everything and shower your with affection. But lately, it's not just cooling off -- it's ice cold. Couples who are no longer together admit that they experienced a longstanding history of feeling as though their needs were no longer being met. Words of encouragement and support that were once commonplace are now largely absent. Other examples include one or both members of a couple refraining from sex, intimacy, and/or affection. Feeling as though your needs are not being met leads to resentment, withholding, and anger.

2. There are critical or unresolved issues
One good reason for couples to partake in counselling at different times over the course of their relationship is to help them find healthy and constructive ways of resolving conflict. Over time, a relationship has the potential to accumulate unresolved issues and problems, but if you don't know how to get to a satisfactory resolution you might find you and your man in a less-than-pretty stalemate. The issue gets buried until a later time - creating another unresolved conflict. Relationships with a large list of unsolved conflicts become suffocated by the weight of these. Newer relationships that continue to face unresolved differences and conflict don't have a long-term future.

3. Bad behaviour, bad excuses
Ladies, we all need to honour our self-defined 'deal breakers' -- the things that you simply won't tolerate in your relationship under any circumstances. Making excuses for bad behaviour (betrayal of trust, infidelity, violent behaviour, etc.) are a tell tale sign that you are not willing to take an honest look at what's wrong with your relationship. If your former Prince Charming does the unthinkable, the relationship needs to be over.

4. Negative impact
When a relationship creates an ongoing source of tension, conflict, frustration, anger and unhappiness it's time to say sayonara. A healthy relationship is one that contributes (rather than negatively affects) the overall quality of your life.

5. Sense of disconnection
An emotional or spiritual incompatibility occurs when one or both partners begin to confide in members of the opposite gender for emotional support and comfort. So, if you're sharing your inner most feelings with the cute guy at work, rather than your partner, you need to assess your relationship. It's as if you and your partner have run out of things to say, behaving more like roommates than lovers, living separate, albeit, parallel lives.

Recognizing that your relationship has fatal flaws doesn't mean you need to point fingers of blame at yourself or your partner. It does mean that you need to stop investing time and energy in what isn't working, and instead look ahead to what it is you really want from a love relationship.

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