6 Signs Your Relationship is One-Sided

This article is for educational purposes and is based on personal opinions. This article is not a substitute for professional advice, but general guidance. We advise you to always listen to your intuition and always do what is right for you.

Every now and then, do you feel like your relationship is not going as well as you hoped it would when you fell in love with your partner? Does it sometimes feel like they’re not even trying… like you’re the one doing all the work?

This can be quite confusing sometimes, and you may wonder if it’s really happening or if it’s just your mind creating scenarios. If you’re not sure, feel free to keep reading and see if you relate to any of the 6 signs your relationship is one sided.

1. You’re the one who does all the planning

Are you a romantic at heart? You like cute picnic dates, cozy and intimate cafe bars, fun couples activities… But, no matter what it is, are you the one who initiates the activities most of the time?

It’s okay for your partner not to be creative and prefer to simply hang out at home, we all have our preferences, after all. But if they know how much you like doing things together outside, and they still never bother to suggest anything, maybe it means they just… don’t find it so important.

This can be pretty frustrating, especially if you’re really trying hard to keep the relationship going. You definitely deserve to be treated from time to time! And if your partner deserves you, they should know that.

2. They find time for others, but not for you

You ask them out for lunch, but they’re already going with a colleague. You invite them over to your place, but they’re already hanging out with friends. You’re waiting for them to reply to your text for hours, even though you see they’re online…

Sometimes, people are genuinely busy and can’t be available all the time, and that’s just how life is. And of course, in every healthy relationship both sides should find time to hang out with other people, especially family and friends. But that certainly doesn’t mean that they should ignore their other halves.

If your partner has enough time to hang out with everyone else while you watch TV at home by yourself, it’s a clear sign something’s not quite right. After all, when you like somebody, you want to spend time with them, as much as you can, right? So when they say “I’m busy right now”, maybe, unfortunately, it actually means “I don’t want to”.

3. You’re missing the emotional support

Photo by: Rafael Barros / Pexels

Do you often confide in your partner? Do you trust them to listen to you after a hard day? If they’re not that into your relationship, they may find it hard to be by your side and give you emotional support, even if you’d leave everything in a split second to listen to them.

Your significant other should ideally be your best friend, a shoulder to cry on, a helping hand. They’re the ones you run to when life gets you down, and they’re here to reassure you that everything will be okay.

So when you think you have someone to lean on, but then learn they don’t want to be there when you need them, the situation you’re dealing with can feel ten times harder. You may feel disappointed and betrayed, and even start rethinking your relationship… for a good reason.

4. Your comments are met with annoyance

When you’re dating someone, naturally, sometimes you’re going to have some complaints. Whether it’s simple things like “I don’t like it when you’re late to our dates” or something more intimate like “I wish we would snuggle more”, it’s a healthy thing to voice your opinions to try and better your relationship.

Of course, a loving partner would listen to you, think about what you said, and have a conversation. That is, if they find your relationship important.

If they don’t, everything you say may annoy them and make them turn their head away while rolling their eyes. They may even feel angry and frustrated and think that you’re “complaining so much”. It’s because they just want to run away from their responsibilities and avoid putting any effort into the relationship. 

If you find your partner in this description, maybe they don’t really care as much as you do…

5. You make excuses for their behavior

Photo by: Alex Green / Pexels

“One day, when we have kids, they will act differently.”
“They are going through a phase right now, it will get better in time.”
“They actually love me a lot, they just have a hard time showing it.”


How many times have you said something like that? Do you happen to always be sugarcoating what you’re actually experiencing with them?

This is called a fantasy bond. It is an illusion of love and comfort which you may develop as a coping mechanism to protect you from fear and anxiety when you feel your relationship is falling apart. Even when you feel like these words are true, if something is really wrong, deep down you know what you’re actually doing – making excuses.

And you shouldn’t have to make excuses to feel cared for in a relationship.

6. They say they’ll try harder, but they never do

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Maybe you noticed all these signs a long time ago. Maybe you talked to them about it already. Maybe they said they’d try harder… But did they, really?

It happens so many times in relationships where one partner just won’t bother to put in the effort. They just keep making promises and forget to keep them. 

The truth is, you can’t change anyone or expect them to change for you, but growing as a person with someone by your side is one of the things relationships are for. If something is bothering you and you let them know, and they say they’ll fix it but they don’t, it’s safe to say you should keep your expectations low. 

Or maybe realize you’re wasting your time, and give your patience to someone who deserves it.

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Do you relate to any of these signs?

Remember, you’re the one who actually knows how things are. If some of these things happen rarely, it doesn’t necessarily mean they’re not interested.

To be sure, an associate professor of psychology and human development, Kelly Campbell, Ph.D., suggests keeping track of the signs. You may try journaling about your days in your relationship, and after some time, see how often these signs appear. If it happens nearly every day, you’ll be sure of what’s going on.

Trust your heart, trust your intuition, and know that no matter what happens, you’re never alone.

Thank you for reading!
Written by:
Stela Košić

If you wish to find out more about unrequited love, feel free to check out some of the videos from Psych2Go’s YouTube channel:

References:

  • An Expert Explains the Psychology Behind a One-sided Relationship. (2021, March 24). Brides. https://www.brides.com/one-sided-relationship-5112496
  • mindbodygreen. (2021, July 1). Are You In A One-Sided Relationship? 20 Major Red Flags. https://amp.mindbodygreen.com/articles/one-sided-relationships
  • PsychAlive. (2021, February 25). The Fantasy Bond. https://www.psychalive.org/fantasy-bond/
  • Raypole, C. (2020, October 13). How to Recognize a One-Sided Relationship and Restore the Balance. Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/health/relationships/one-sided-relationship#why-it-happens

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