RELATIONSHIP TIPS: Six signs that you should walk away


Breaking away from a relationship that was once full of love and promise is never easy. Quite often, people contend with being in unhealthy relationships even where they know they should quit.

There are always those niggling signs that should nudge you out of the misery you face. Here are some of those red-flags you should take as a sign that you should pack your bags and leave:

YOUR FEELINGS: According to Chris Hart, a psychologist based in Nairobi, the first thing you should examine is the streak of emotions you have towards your partner for the period you have been together.

For instance, says Dr Hart, if you have been dating someone for several months and you are still not sure about him, your relationship is heading nowhere.

In the same vein, Ken Munyua, a counselling psychologist based in Nairobi adds that you should gauge if there is more to your relationship than just your partner’s physical attributes that attracted you to him, and vice versa.

“If there is no wood to fuel the fire based on mutual values and interests, and if there is nothing to it beyond physical attraction, call it quits,” Munyua advises.

IMBALANCE: According to Susan Gacheru, a relationship and family coach, lack of balance is one of the tell-tale signs that your relationship should be wound up. “Progressive relationships are never tilted towards one partner.

They have a form of balance. If one partner treats the other well, this is reciprocated in kind.

However, if your partner treats you badly when you treating him like royalty, then consider sparing that royal treatment for someone who will appreciate you,” she counsels, adding that you should also leave if you’re the only one making the effort to make things work.

ASPIRATIONAL DIFFERENCES: Where do you envision yourself career-wise and financially in the next few years? Is your partner supportive of this and is he also working towards similar goals to improve himself. If not, break up.

TIME: According to Dr Hart, if you spend little time together even though you’re not so far apart, it may be time for you to go your separate ways.

“If you hardly spend time together or don’t even know when you’ll see each other next, or you usually have difficulty arranging to meet, you should quit,” he points out. In the same vein, you should cut your losses if your partner is always asking you to go see him but never finds time to come see you.

EXTERNAL STRESSORS: According to author and psychologist Dr Randi Gunther, some unexpected crises may lead you to leave your relationship and that is okay.

She singles out major illnesses, accidents, work demands, and loss of financial stability as some of the stressors that could chip away at your ability to cope or withstand your relationship.

“If you are unable to triumph over such stressors, you will run the risk of finding your partner inadequate. Bear in mind that sometimes, there is just too much heartache, and any relationship can go down when it becomes too much,” she says.

NO CONFLICT: You should walk away if your relationship doesn’t grow or doesn’t have conflicts. “Lack of conflict may seem magical on the surface, but it’s a warning sign that both of you no longer pay much attention to each other or to your relationship, have no challenges, ambitions, and no growth. You’ve emotionally broken up but are still physically together,” says Dr Gunther.

On the other hand, she notes that if your relationship is constantly giving you scars without growing you, then it’s time to take a walk.

AFTER THE BREAK-UP: Don’t try to numb the pain of a break-up with rebound sex or drinks and drugs. “Instead, acknowledge what you’re feeling. Stick to a daily routine, but also develop some new habits that renew you and remind you of your individuality,” Dr Hart advises.

Moreover, you should get rid of possible emotional triggers to help you move on. “If you had been living with your partner before the break-up, try and make your home different from what you have been used to,” he adds.