Have you ever been in a situation where you thought you were in a relationship but it turns out you mistook intimacy, kindness, and care for love?
If you were brought up with emotionally unavailable caregivers or raised in chaotic homes then it’s easier to misinterpret relationship situations.
So how do you know you are in a healthy loving relationship or a friends-with-benefits relationship?
Conversations don’t go beyond pillow talk
When someone is genuinely interested in you, they’ll invest their time and energy in the relationship. You’ll see them make an effort to make things work.
But if they are never interested in any other area of your life such as your friends, family, career, or your mental health, then clearly, they don’t like you enough. If they don’t involve you in their plans, take you on dates, or introduce you to friends or family, then that’s a sexual relationship. Or if they are the type to leave immediately after sex, then you have your answer.
They aren’t ready for commitment
When you are getting good vibes from someone and you like them, it’s easy to assume the feeling is mutual. It’s easy to presume they want you as much as you want them.
However, before you jump to conclusions, it’s good to ask important questions. Do they like or want you? Are they looking forward to having a relationship with you? Is your relationship exclusive or are they seeing other people? Have they made it clear they want you as their partner?
These are uncomfortable conversations but very necessary. You wouldn’t want to be in a relationship where someday the other person will say they didn’t ask you to be their partner.
Relationships can be complicated, but when someone wants to be with you, you shouldn’t have to question your place in their life, there’ll be clarity. But if it’s absent, it’s time to go back to the drawing board.
Absence of emotional or physical safety
How you feel when you are around someone is very important. When someone is honest and transparent with you; when you trust them, you are always at ease with them. But when they aren’t, it’s not unusual to be worried.
These are the same people who if they take long to respond to a text or call back, you undoubtedly know they are up to no good.
An intentional person who cares about your well-being and wellness will give you emotional safety, even without you asking. A sexual relationship may lack the above since it’s only physical. It’s common to experience anxiety and instability with them.