You could be the reason your relationship is going nowhere


What you need to know:

  • It is always wise to check in with your partner to find out which direction your relationship is taking, especially if you have not yet tied the knot. At least this way, you are able to make a decision based on the right information. So, what are those indicators that your relationship is not going anywhere?

Recently I was forced to confront a male relative who has been dating this lovely young woman for donkey years without any signs of settling down. “Why are you wasting the girl’s time? Why don’t you either commit or let her move on?” I demanded. His answer that she was also wasting his time was as shocking as it was eye-opening.

“Is she too young to see that we can never be?” He shot back. But judging from the effort she puts into scrubbing his jeans, polishing his shoes and preparing him gourmet meals all at the expense of her dainty hands, this girl is obviously none the wiser.

It is always wise to check in with your partner to find out which direction your relationship is taking, especially if you have not yet tied the knot. At least this way, you are able to make a decision based on the right information. So, what are those indicators that your relationship is not going anywhere?

Although some people are content to walk in circles like the Israelites wandering in the desert, this contentment can be misleading. A relationship should have a timeline; a beginning, the middle and the end. Many relationships tend to stay in that middle line, never going forward or calling it quits. Even when they notice that things are not moving forward, they start walking on eggshells instead of asking the hard questions that will provide a resolution for the relationship.

Others resort to playing inspector Derrick and patrolling each other in the dead of the night. Please, if you are not sure about the direction the relationship is taking or if you are unhappy with its progress, then it is better to confront and address the elephant in the room. However uncomfortable the talk might be, and however badly it might destabilise those tectonic plates you have been balancing for years, it is better to be sure than sorry.

There is such a thing as a law of precedence in permanent relationships. There are people out there who still believe that a fish cannot marry a bird because they would not find a suitable home in which to live. Look around. If your people do not mix well with others, then chances are you will likely not be able to settle with an outsider either, because history has that annoying way of repeating itself. Find out if it is in your favour.

Your actions can stagnate the relationship. If you are the kind that asks for the spare key before it is offered and seem too eager to play roles above your paygrade (think wifely duties, husband role) you will certainly get some pushback. No one likes being colonised even if it is for benign reasons. Although your imperialistic attitude may get you a foot in the door, it will do more damage than good as your partner will spend more time trying to free themselves from your tentacles.

Although there are countless relationships that have thrived without parental consent, sometimes, it is good to get blessing from both sets of parents because we have all heard of in-law drama. Finding out about your prospective in-laws’ attitude towards the relationship will guide you on whether launching a charm offensive will get you anywhere or whether you should just count your losses and move on.

Finally, your stand on issues such as values and principles, religion, level of education and future aspirations matters. If you disagree on all these, it is possible the relationship will not progress. However, not to spook those in such relationships, there are always exceptions to the rule. May yours be the exception.

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