1. You don’t want to go back to being single. You would rather be in a relationship — any relationship — than be single again. You don’t want to be the only one in your friend group who doesn’t have a partner. And you don’t want to be questioned by every relative about when you’re going to settle down. It’s easier to stay in the relationship you’ve already built than to tell everyone you’re single again.
2. You really want a wedding (or children or a house). You’re not staying with this person because of how excited you are to spend forever alongside them. You’re staying with them because you’re excited about the milestones they’re going to help you reach. You’ll get to walk down the aisle. You’ll get to paint a nursery. You’ll get to own your own home. You desperately want to check certain items off your bucket list and you feel like they’re not going to get accomplished without this person, so you stay.
3. You like the way everyone treats you when you’re together. You like that other girls look at you, jealous about the person you’ve landed. You like that your family members repeatedly tell you how happy they are for you and they’re proud of you. You even like getting hearts on couple photos you post online. Everyone assumes you’re happy — and you want it to stay that way. You want people to think you have your shit together.
4. The sex is fantastic. Even though you’ve found someone who matches you perfectly in the bedroom, that doesn’t mean you match well in other areas. That doesn’t mean that the rest of the relationship is going to go smoothly. You don’t want to stay with someone, simply because they’re good in bed. There should be much more you enjoy about your partner than the way they touch you. If sex is the only thing keeping you together, you might not belong together.
5. You’re scared of breaking their heart. Leaving would hurt your partner — but staying with them when you aren’t fully invested in the relationship is going to hurt them even more. You don’t want to force yourself to stay in an uncomfortable situation. You’re going to leave eventually, whether it’s tomorrow or ten years down the line, so you might as well do it now and put them through less pain. The longer you wait, the harder it will be for your person to handle.
6. Everyone else wants you to stay together. This is your life. No one else gets to choose who you date. Maybe your parents will be disappointed if you break up. Maybe your friends will feel like you’re making a mistake. But it doesn’t matter what they think. All that matters is whether or not you’re happy. You have to stop worrying about how a breakup would impact the people around you and start asking yourself what you really want.
7. You’re too comfortable to go anywhere. You shouldn’t stay with someone, simply because you have a history. Because you’re used to dating them. Because it would be scary to leave. If you don’t want to be together, then you shouldn’t be together. You have no obligation to stay. You’re allowed to go.