When To Call It Quits In A Relationship? 15 Signs To Look Out For (And 5 Questions To Ask Yourself)

Before separating from your partner, ask yourself some important questions about the happiest and difficult moments together, your losses and gains from it, your ideal partner, and finally, if you’re willing to work through all the issues. There could be various red flags and signs like emotional unavailability, different goals in life, physical, mental, or financial abuse, and so on. Each relationship is unique and has its own set of issues. But if you’ve tried everything from your side to make it work, exhausted all the options, but it still isn’t working, you might need to consider separation.

The beginning of every relationship is a path of roses, and it feels like this one will last. It’s so easy to be in this relationship, and why wasn’t it so easy before? But soon, the honeymoon phase ends, and you’re hit with a series of realities.

It starts with minor issues or fights that you might or might not resolve, but the love stays strong. But with time, these issues and conflicts start getting bigger, and you realize you are both very different people who want other things in life.

But sometimes, we aren’t able to call it quits, and we still believe we can make it work. So, when do you know a relationship is over? What are the signs you need to look for?

How to know your relationship is in danger?

There is a common saying that love is blinding, and those in love won’t ever realize this or admit it. But only once their relationship is over do they look back and learn how they couldn’t see the red flags or the warning signs right in front of them.

A relationship could start pretty smoothly, but people get to know each other as time passes.

There can be many conflicts; sometimes, couples solve them and become better versions of themselves for their partner. But other times, these conflicts might remain unsolved, eventually leading to a breakup or separation.

5 questions to ask yourself before calling it quits in a relationship

As important as it is to notice the signs of a failing relationship that needs to end for good, there’re a few questions you should ask yourself before taking the final plunge.

Instead of asking the obvious questions about the nature of your relationship and if you’ll regret your decision, there are more profound questions at stake.

1. What were your happiest moments with your partner in the relationship?

A young couple is in the kitchen, happy and enjoying each other's company as the husband cooks a meal.

Think back on the times that were the best of all the happy moments you have had together.

How do they make you feel? Do you think they were the most joyful moments?

Were all the happy moments due to your effort, or did your partner put effort too?

2. What were your most difficult times with your partner?

Think back on times that were extremely difficult with your partner. Was it always caused by them, or were you the cause too?

How did you solve them? Is the decision to part ways with your partner more difficult than those moments?

Will you be able to overcome this and find a solution?

3. What are your most significant losses and gains from ending this relationship?

Envision your future and see if it looks much better once you end this relationship.

Will you lose more by ending this relationship? Make a list of the gains and losses you’ll be experiencing once you end it, and think not just emotionally but practically too.

4. What kind of partner do you want?

When we enter a relationship, it’s very natural, and even though there might be a few things lacking compared to the ideal image of a partner in our mind, we don’t care because we’re in love.

Now, think about what kind of partner you envision for yourself. What’s the type of relationship you wish for? Are your standards realistic?

5. Are you willing to make the required changes?

What kind of changes does your relationship need for it not to end? Are both of you ready to make these changes? Do you have the capacity to make these changes? Are you invested enough to try to make it work?

15 signs you need to call it quits in a relationship

Every relationship is different as their experiences and personality make their relationship unique to them.

There could be various signs to look out for in a relationship nearing its end. Not all might apply to yours, but looking at these can give you a hint if you’re in an unhappy relationship that needs quitting.

1. You don’t see eye to eye

A married couple is in disagreement and they're both sitting on the sofa, facing away from each other, spending time on their phones.

Initially, you don’t put much effort into thinking about how your partner is different from you. But you might not like your partner’s true personality when reality kicks in.

Happen to many people as they realize their partner isn’t who they thought they were or who they claimed to be. 

Sometimes two people are too different, or you just end up with the wrong person.

2. You’ve different goals in life

They might want to move to a different country, and you might want to stay where you’re. Two people in a relationship can have different life goals, and that’s perfectly fine.

You could have the same goals initially, but one person’s goals might change at some point. Instead of dragging the relationship and agreeing to what you don’t want, it’s better to rethink the situation.

Sometimes, wanting different things from life could be deal breakers, and there’s no room for adjustment.

3. Emotionally unavailable

An emotionally unavailable person will never fully commit to you.

In their mind, they can’t handle an emotional connection to someone and be vulnerable. They prefer dating casually and maintaining some distance.

Even though everything about them is perfect and they’re a great human, someone who craves a healthy relationship will find this person challenging.

If you’re waiting for them to change, there’s a possibility they might not.

4. Unhealthy attachment

A relationship doesn’t always need a series of conflicts to end. It could also be that the two people are too involved in each other’s life.

There’s no room for personal growth as both people are hindering each other’s growth in life by being too involved.

It’s called an unhealthy form of attachment, and it could be from both sides, or one partner could have a more unhealthy attachment.

5. Lost attraction and physical intimacy

A married couple is in bed, but the wife is no longer happily intimate with her husband.

There could be phases in a relationship when you’re not intimate for a while but become close again, a problem arises when you stop finding your partner attractive.

You have to work on reigniting the lost passion and intimacy, but even when there’s an effort, and it’s still not there, you must stop and find the root cause of this issue.

There could be a hidden reason why there’s a lack of intimacy.

6. Unresolved issues

One person likes to talk about the issues and solve them right after a conflict, but another might work their way through it by taking a day or two to analyze the situation. This can be worked through a compromise on how to settle the issues.

But when the issues are left unresolved and are buried under a mountain of other problems, it creates an emotional drift.

7. Your partner has given up

You’re trying your best in the relationship and giving it your all to save it and to make it work. But you can’t do anything if your partner isn’t willing to do the same.

If they aren’t ready to try even a little bit, you would want to rethink your relationship.

8. Commitment issues

You’re looking to settle down, but your partner has no plans.

One could compromise and settle if their partner is willing a few years down the road, but if they haven’t met your parents or aren’t ready for an engagement, you might want to rethink your priorities.

9. Lost support and respect

Supporting each other and showing mutual respect is necessary for a healthy relationship. But if they don’t support you from time to time, this could be something to consider.

10. Trust issues and lies

If your partner lies to you constantly, your trust will break eventually and entirely.

With trust issues, it’s up to you to see if it needs the help of a therapist or if you’ve had enough of your partner, and your relationship will never find solid ground.

11. No sense of responsibility

In an adult relationship, both must be mature enough to handle their fair share of things.

If your partner is immature and tends to rely on you for most things, they might not have a sense of responsibility.

12. Physical, mental, or financial abuse

This is a major red flag. Any kind of abuse, be it physical, mental, or financial, is not worth fighting or saving the relationship.

A husband is showing his empty wallet to his wife, showing that he has no money.

If you feel anxious, angry, worthless, gaslit, and even misunderstood, most of the time, it’s a form of mental or emotional abuse.

If they’re withholding your funds from you, giving you an allowance, and checking every penny you’re spending, it’s a form of financial abuse.

13. Lost love

In the end, if love is lost, there’s no motivation to fight for it. You can’t force someone to be with you if they aren’t in love anymore, and vice-versa. As cruel and heartbreaking as it may be.


What are the red flags?

The color red represents danger, which is what it means in a relationship. Someone with red flags means they portray some unhealthy traits for a relationship, and some could be emotional and others physical in nature.

It could be anything from being violent, drug or alcohol addiction, constant jealousy, distrust, infidelity, controlling nature, etc.

How do you know someone wants to break up with you?

When someone plans to break up with you, they could do various things and drop hints to show it. They would hide things and not share as much as before. They could also become emotionally detached and find excuses not to spend time with you.

There could be other signs, but most importantly, when your partner starts behaving in a way that’s not true to their nature, you know something is going on.

To summarise

Depending on your situation, there could be various consequences of ending a relationship.

Think wisely about your finances, children, and how ugly the separation could be. Think about the questions and what your answers are to them.

Relationships have conflicts, but if you’ve exhausted all your options to make it work, including a couple or individual therapy, it’s best to consider separation

The bad times shouldn’t outweigh the good ones during the entire duration of a relationship.

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Hi! I’m Saumya, writer and editor at Marriage & Bliss. “To be fully seen by somebody, then, and be loved anyhow—this is a human offering that can border on miraculous.” —Elizabeth Gilbert. Every marriage faces pitfalls, be they internal or external, and with my words, I hope to help couples find possible solutions and mend their broken relationships. After all, a successful marriage requires falling in love many times, always with the same person.
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