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I’m surrounded by a lot of young people in my life. I have a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends, and I consider myself blessed, on most days, to have three young men of my own who are happy and healthy, and for the most part, still living at home. Having them under my roof, gives me the privilege of observing them in their relationships. I think it’s safe to say, smart phones and social media have totally changed the “dating game”. Today the ideas of privacy and “absence making the heart grow fonder”, are fading concepts and thanks to cell phones, young couples are always joined by the hips, or rather by the ears, or is it the face now.
Thankfully though, it appears, the fundamentals of dating and relationships, are still intact. The reality is, old or young, technology or not, we’re all social beings with wants and needs, and we want what we need, and most people basically want the same things out of a relationship. We want love, faithfulness, honesty, commitment, compromise, and compatibility.
Based on my observations it seems to me that sometimes, for whatever reasons, we’re not in tune with, or maybe we just choose to ignore the cues of incompatibility. I had a conversation the other day about issues with communication in a relationship and it occurred to me then, that sometimes we mistake the signs of incompatibility for communication issues. Sure, all relationships have communication issues every now and again, some more frequently than others, but how do we recognize when disagreements are due to incompatibility and not fixable issues in communication?
I’ll be the first to say our gut never lies. If your instincts tell you it’s not right, it’s probably not, but just in case you’re still wondering, here are 5 solid indicators.
01 – You Just Can’t Be Yourself Around Your Partner
If you find that instead of just being yourself, you’re constantly trying to please your partner, you refuse to share your opinions for fear of disagreements, or if you’re bending yourself into a pretzel to be the type of guy or girl he or she admires, then that could be a red flag. It’s never easy or pleasant trying to be someone you’re not, and you’ll never be able to keep the facade going forever. Compromising yourself, your opinions, and your happiness is never worth it.
02 – Your Interests are Just Too Different
Now don’t get me wrong, there’s a little bit of excitement to be had when a couple has “differences”. It’s also fine to have your own interests and be able to spend time on your own fulfilling them. However, if you both are never able to compromise and you never take an interest or participate in any of the activities of the other person in the relationship, then enough said; or in this case, not said.
03 – You’re Always Trying to Change Each Other
Whether you’ve been together for a number of years or you’ve just started dating, it is never okay trying to change “core” things about the other person. Trying to break your partner out of bad habits like chewing with his mouth open, or spending too much money at the mall, is okay. But if your partner is a nice church going girl and you’re constantly forcibly trying to take her to the clubs, or if your partner is a free-spirited guy and you’re trying to turn him into a square, then yes, you’re probably incompatible.
04 – Just too Different in the Way you Both Express Your Feelings
Communication is very important in a relationship. If one party shouts and the other never listens, or if there is a lack of empathy or understanding and you both can never come to an agreement on each other’s view or anything for that matter, and you’ve talked about it over and over again and still nothing changes, then it’s safe to say you’re both probably incompatible.
05 – Always Arguing
If any or all the above signs are present, then chances are, you’re always arguing. I believe this is one of the most reliable tell-tale signs of incompatibility. If you’re always butting heads no matter how simple the topic or the conversation, then this is a very good time to take a good hard look at your relationship.
**Disclaimer…I am not a relationship expert; this blog is based on my personal observations and conversations with certain individuals who will remain anonymous.