If you’re wondering whether your feelings of annoyance towards your partner are just a phase, or sign that you’ve just stopped GAF all together, it can be very confusing. Is it time to sack off the relationship because you’ve completely fallen out of love? Or is it salvageable and you’re just going through a bit of a rough patch? How can you ever know?
Lena Fenton (MSc), a psychosexual couple’s psychotherapist from Click For Therapy, says, “In any relationship the things to look out for are those small irritations or upsets that seem too small to make a fuss about, because those are the things that over many months or years can quietly destroy the love between you. It’s also important to avoid going to bed angry, try to at least reach a temporary truce and agree to return to the argument or the issue at a later specified time.
“Once lost, love is very difficult to regain. It is vital that you cherish what you have now to help it grow and deepen, that way it can last forever.”
With the help of two relationship experts, here are 12 signs you might have fallen out of love. Suzie Parkus, dating and relationship coach at Meet Your Match, says these first seven signs are ones you really need to look out for.
1. When communicating with your partner (starting conversation, sending texts etc) feels like a sense of duty rather than something you enjoy. The compulsion and excitement to reach out and connect with your partner isn’t there. When you do connect communicate, you do so out of duty because it’s part of the relationship habits you have built up.
2. You have a mild feeling of dread when they get in touch. When receiving a message or call from your partner, there is mild feeling of dread or indifference to hearing from them.
3. You stop thinking ahead. You don’t think further ahead that the next day or week because you aren’t inspired to plan a future with your partner anymore.
4. You stop planning little things that would make them happy – like picking up their favourite drink or recording a programme you know they like. All the triggers you would have as reminders of your partner you ignore. If you spot their favourite flowers or chocolate while out you’ll walk straight past without a second thought.
5. You just exist alongside them. Your lives become parallel rather than entwined. There’ll be no PDA even when sat on sofa together.
6. You’re constantly criticising them. You can’t help yourself from internal and external criticism. Anything and everything annoys you.
7. You start to leave them out of plans. You’ll go out or do nice things without even asking them to come along.
Rebecca McCann, a Click For Therapy therapist, says there are five other important signs.
8. You wish they would be busy on a Friday night so you can just chill or go out with friends and not have to spend time with them.
9. You start to separate yourself emotionally. You think about yourself more and them much, much less.
10. You start to just not care so much. All the things that did bug you, like when they were late home, when they made plans on a Saturday night and you wanted a night together, just don’t bug you and the anger has gone, and you just don’t really care one way or the other.
11. When you think about them you feel a bit meh. Not excited, not angry, just meh.
12. You find excuses not to have sex… a lot. Mostly because that means being near them and communicating in some way. Or maybe you feel comfortable with them, but the sexual attraction is no longer there.