A relationship usually doesn’t end because of a big blow-up fight that appears out of nowhere.
Instead, it is a slow build-up over time and the end usually comes when both, or one of the parties has given so much that they have nothing left.
Relationship burnout occurs when someone is doing everything they can to make the relationship work but things aren’t changing. After enough time this will result in exhaustion and frustration.
Romantic relationships, especially when on the decline, can become as demanding and taxing as a full-time job. And if we’ve worked exceedingly hard to make the relationship work and it still fails, the period of singledom that follows is often riddled with signs of burnout.
This is what has happened in most of my prior relationships. We would try to work things out but when things wouldn’t change it would eventually get to the point of no return.
Here are five signs that you may be experiencing burnout in your relationship.
#1. You are emotionally exhausted.
A few years ago it was nearing the end of my relationship even though I hadn’t accepted it yet, and I felt like life was being sucked out of me.
I didn’t want to hang out with friends, I could barely focus on anything and just felt like I had no emotions left.
Everyone processes the end of a relationship differently, but from my experience, there is a sort of “numbness” that comes when you just don’t want to fight anymore.
It turns out that I was feeling emotional depletion because I had put so much of my energy into my relationship for so long that I didn’t have anything left to give to anyone.
#2. You stop prioritizing time and future plans.
When I was dating my first boyfriend ever, I remember him talking about making plans a month or so in advance. My initial reaction was a queasy feeling in my stomach… instead of excitement.
I have also found that in past relationships it is not a good sign if I am scheduling time with friends and planning trips without my partner’s involvement.
Looking because this happened because I was subconsciously beginning to pull away from the relationship even if I haven’t realized it yet.
If you are no longer excited about planning things for the future with the person you are dating it’s a huge red flag that you may not be into them anymore.
#3. You are constantly thinking/daydreaming about other people.
A few years ago I was in a long-term relationship and problems started arising with my partner.
During that time I was working at a restaurant and I ended up developing a huge crush on one of my coworkers.
Even though I was respectful and never crossed a line, I realized that I was constantly thinking/daydreaming about this person because I was so unsatisfied with my relationship.
It’s completely normal to find other people attractive when you are in a monogamous relationship.
However, if you are constantly fantasizing about being with someone else it is most likely because you are unsatisfied with your relationship.
#4. You aren’t fighting for the relationship.
When I was younger I was in a long-distance relationship. Near the end, I began to stop making an effort. I would answer his calls but I wouldn’t make the calls. I would respond to a text but I wouldn’t go into details about my day.
I knew that things weren’t good but instead of fighting for us and facing what was happening, I let things fizzle out, which they soon did, because I was distant and basically unavailable.
Most relationships can survive a big blow-up now and then. But they end because of small things. When you stop talking, stop fighting, stop planning, and stop putting an effort, those are signs that you have given up — whether you are admitting it to yourself and your partner or not.
If your relationship has gotten to the point of burnout you will need to take a step back and truly decide if you are willing to fight for your partner or if it’s time to let them go.