Obviously, each person and therefore relationship is different. However there are a few things that stay the same. The first is, fundamentally, you will know if it is a true match or not.
I had serious relationships before my husband, but my heart and my body gave me signs these others weren't true matches. I did soul searching and was able to realize this in active conscious ways.
Here are some signs the person is wrong for you. In this list, any single of them may indicate this is the wrong person, and a combination most likely means you should not be with them. However, all relationships are different and you should of course communicate with your partner about these concerns before taking evasive actions:
- You are disgusted by them.
- You aren't attracted to the person physically (even if you do still 'care about them').
- You feel trapped.
- You find yourself sabotaging the relationship.
- You have changed in a way that makes you feel bad about yourself.
- You are denying parts of yourself in order to make that person happy.
- You have different expectations of life.
- You have conflicting goals.
- You lie about what you are doing, who you're with, or where you are to your partner.
- You are having a relationship with someone else behind your partner's back (cheating).
- Your fights are abusive in some way (physically, emotionally, or sexually).
- You are obsessed with them to the point where you have lost some of your personhood.
- At least one major deal-breaker issue has arisen between you.
- Your partner has created rifts between you and your other relationships (where none needed to exist).
- You are sad, sick, or angry any time you are around your partner.
- The other person is experiencing any single or combination of these things towards you.
- You never tire of each other.
- You want to tell each other every little thing that happened in your day.
- You wake up every morning and smile because you're spending your life with that person.
- You communicate all your feelings and concerns to that person.
- You fight (this means you're talking!) without being degrading or disrespectful.
- Your relationship is equal parts give and take for both partners.
- You are respectful and loving towards one another.
- You are best friends and lovers.
- You have similar life expectations.
- There are no deal-breaker scenarios with your potential spouse.
- You share one another's goals and are supportive of each other.
- You agree on whether or not you will have children and how they will be raised.
- Even if you don't like his/her family, you make an effort to spend time with them (you don't marry just one person - you get the whole package!).
- You love them despite their character flaws, and even because of them.
- You imagine yourself growing old with this person.
- Marriage and/or kids with this person excites you.
- Your partner feels the exact same way you do on all counts.
These are not comprehensive lists, but they definitely give you a good way of being able to quickly assess whether or not you and your partner are a good match. Many people experience signs and don't realize why they get divorced after only a year of marriage. Sometimes this is because they ignored the signs, weren't ready to address them, or didn't connect them to their relationship.
It's important to assess your relationship before you get engaged. This will help you determine if getting engaged is even a good idea. By figuring this out early you will save you and your partner a lot of time, money, and stress. But remember, even if you have already become engaged, you're not officially married until the papers are signed. It's better to find out while you're engaged that you're not right for each other than it is to face a divorce several years later.
Marriage should be an amazing and wonderful thing. So many people rush into it without fully understanding what is involved or why they even think they should get married. If you go the extra mile and really examine your relationship with your partner, you'll be doing everyone a favor by proving you really are a true match.