Deal Breakers in Relationships

Sometimes love, comfort and chemistry is not enough to seal the deal. You may think you’d do anything for your significant other, and can’t fathom the thought of him or her out of your life. However, if certain elements are less than ideal now, you either need to cut your losses in the near future because it will hurt more later on, or take some necessary steps to re-evaluate whether the relationship is worth fighting for.

Family matters. If your family doesn’t approve of your significant other or vice-versa, you have a tough battle if you want your relationship to survive. There are many reasons why family may not approve: from religion, to snobbery (as in they don’t want their son or daughter to marry outside of their class) to a first impression gone wrong, or, for no reason in particular. On the other hand, you may not stand his or her family: the way your potential future father-in-law talks down to women, the way your potential future mother-in-law babies her kids, or their values that clash with yours.

A relationship is doomed if the two of you don’t know how to compromise effectively. This can include a relationship that is always one-sided with either the more stubborn, more powerful, or one with the “upper hand” always getting his or her way. The best relationships feature the concept of reciprocity, with the “power” in a constant and healthy exchange between the two of you. If you can’t compromise, you clearly don’t see eye-to-eye on many fundamental things. If it is bad now, it will be worse later.

Don’t Support Each Other’s Decisions
You always want to feel that your significant other supports your choices and has your back no matter what. If they don’t like your job, passion, hobbies, or how you choose to spend time (unless, of course it is detrimental to your health and they are looking out for your best interest), odds are it will affect the relationship negatively. Instead of criticizing your decision to become a vegetarian (as much as an inconvenience as it is to cooking and dining out, for example), he or she should take the initiative to discover more about it.

If you can’t be true to one another, you are doomed from the start. When we say honesty, we mean being honest about your past, your present and your goals for the future. Don’t say things you don’t mean, don’t get into the habit of telling white lies to “protect the other’s feelings” or to “avoid a fight” because it could easily become routine – and you may start lying about bigger things. Once your significant other realizes he or she has been lied to, the trust is broken and they will inevitably think differently of you and question when you are actually telling the truth.

Marriage and Kids
This is perhaps the most obvious deal-breaker. There are few compromises when it comes to whether you want to get married and have kids. If one wants more than anything to settle down and have kids while the other thinks differently, you should sever ties before it becomes harder to say goodbye. You’re not going to change their mind, and even if you do, your SO may feel resentful that he or she were “forced” into the cookie-cutter monogamous life when wanting to live the perpetual bachelor lifestyle. Or perhaps he or she wants these things, but just not now or in the near future. The unfortunate reality is that timing really does make a difference.