Maybe it’s the distance or maybe it’s the timing. Maybe he envisions a future on a farm in the country and you want to be in a city. Either way, the relationship didn’t work, even though you wanted to save it. These situations are frustrating, but don’t walk away feeling like it was pointless–there are always some lessons to be learned:
When it was long distance
These relationships are very frustrating. When they work, they work out great, but when they don’t, it can cause a lot of pain. Technology has made it easy these days to stay connected, but someone who’s tried long distance can tell you that a daily FaceTime call just isn’t enough. You learn that physical closeness is priceless. You also learn to value trust in a way you never thought possible. You’re not around them, so you don’t know who they encounter on a daily basis. For this type of relationship to have a chance, a solid foundation of trust is essential.
When someone was too emotionally immature
You may still love that person, but deep down you know you can’t be with them. In these situations, you realize that sometimes age really does matter, and you especially learn about what you need from your partner emotionally. Maybe you recognize that you only get along with people of a certain age group or someone who has more in common with you. In these relationships, you learn more about yourself than you do about the other person.
When you didn’t get along with the family or friends
You can’t avoid the people who are in your partner’s life. Whether it’s an overprotective mother or a racist sibling, you will have to accept that they’re related. Even if they’re estranged from their family now, those people are part of their past. You want to get along with at least some of their friends too, and if you aren’t comfortable with who they surround themselves with, then it may not be the best fit for a relationship.
When there are deal-breakers
There are some issues that are non-negotiable at certain points in a relationship. A major one is starting a family. It’s important to figure out these deal-breakers sooner rather than later to avoid hurt feelings. You may really love the person but realize that they don’t envision the same future that you do. From this, learn what your deal-breakers are, and be sure to make them clear before investing too much time in the relationship.