Pay close attention to these signs since you may be closing up to your partner.
After being hurt by someone, most people find it hard to have a trusting relationship. The fact that we’ve been betrayed before (once, twice, or even more) makes us think that it may happen again, so… what’s the point of even trying, right? Let’s say that after a while, we get to meet a person that genuinely seems nice and straightforward. We start the dating game again, but with doubt in our heart, so our partner starts to feel that we’re not being true, because somehow, the past hasn’t gone away. We fear to be in the same situation again, so we protect ourselves from the external hazards.
Is there any guarantee that we won't be hurt again? Of course not, and there’ll never be. While it’s understandable to feel this way, that’s not an excuse to close up to someone that hasn’t done anything wrong to us. If some of these statements ring a bell, you might be building emotional walls on your relationship. How to be sure about this? Here are some giveaway signs that can help you figure it out:
You have never cried or gotten too angry in front of your partner.
Being vulnerable in front of our partner is a big part of a successful relationship. It says how much we trust them and that you’re willing to let them comfort you during hard times. When we build emotional walls, we avoid uncomfortable moments because we’re not sure about letting them see our sobbing and blotchy face while we pour our hearts out. Usually, you prefer to show a happy and successful side of yourself, rather than making others see you in your worst.
You avoid talking about feelings, and when you do, you keep it simple and superficial.
It’s not that you don’t have feelings, but you would rather talk about something else (to be precise, anything but that). Feelings can be complicated, uncomfortable, and most of all, they will make you look vulnerable, which can be really scary. So, when those fearful conversations come up, you’re not sure how to handle them, and the whole situation ends up being completely awkward and confusing. You somehow try to share your inner world, but it just doesn't come out.
There is no ideal context to introduce your S.O. to your friends and family.
You’re so afraid to get too real with someone that you avoid one of the biggest steps into serious relationships: meeting friends and family. If you haven't opened up to your partner, meeting people close to them can turn into a nightmare. Because you’re not feeling ready or committed enough, it can end really bad. Therefore, you’re not sure about introducing your S.O. to the rest of your family and friends. What if they end up hurting you and you have to explain later what they did to you and why will your peeps won’t see your partner around? You come to think that this is too exhausting that maybe it’s not even worth it.
Making short or long term plans becomes a pressure for you.
Committing to someone can be something that you’re not very good at, hence your relationships tend to become complicated and confusing. You know you enjoy your partner’s company, but you’re still not sure where you want to take the relationship. You think that maybe in time, you’ll figure it out. If your partner dares to ask “the question” (Where is this going?), you don’t want to sound detached, but you’re also not sure what to answer. You have been hurt so much that maybe you need a little more time to make sure that all of this is worth it.
There are parts of you that you’re not sure if they’re worth sharing with your partner.
Maybe you won't tell them even small stuff, like the fact that you have a Gilmore Girls' addiction or that The Lion King makes you cry, or that you were a chubby kid. Of course, there can be things about ourselves that are too personal to be shared. But keeping simple stuff like that can show another emotional wall. We might be afraid of being humiliated for this or making our partner feel awkward, so we avoid the moment overall and keep those things to ourselves.
Getting to know these signs can help you have a better insight on what you’re doing to keep your relationship from growing stronger and deeper. I know we've all been hurt but remember that we have also been cherished. So trust in what love may bring to your life, and give it a chance to prove you wrong.
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Photo credit: April Loyle