What are the red flags of a one-sided relationship? 20 signs to look out for

What are the red flags of a one-sided relationship? 20 signs to look out for

Healthy relationships usually involve a natural give and take between the parties involved. However, sometimes one person invests more energy and effort into making the relationship work. Avoiding this type of relationship is important as it can be draining and difficult to sustain over the long haul. But first, knowing the red flags of a one sided-relationship is vital.

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red flags of a one sided relationship
A young man and woman arguing. Photo: Keira Burt, pexels.com
Source: UGC

What is considered a red flag in a relationship? In a relationship, red flags are those behaviours exhibited by your partner that give you a serious pause. Most red flags are usually indicative of a larger pattern and should not be taken lightly.

20 red flags of a one sided-relationship

Do you always find yourself in selfish one-sided relationships? Maybe you do not know how to tell whether your relationship is unbalanced or not. These are some of the red flags of a one-sided relationship.

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1. Your partner isn’t there for you like you are for them

How do you know you are in an unbalanced relationship? If you notice that you are always doing things for your partner but can't say the same for them, you are in an unbalanced partnership. Healthy relationships require a healthy flow of giving and taking. Once it leans heavily on one side, it becomes toxic.

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2. You are putting in a lot of the work

If establishing closeness feels like your job instead of shared responsibility, chances are your relationship is one-sided. They may minimise or downplay it if you try to bring up this unbalanced effort.

3. They know very little about your life

Another big red flag is if your partner does not have a clue about what is going on in your daily life. If you love someone yet they do not care about your life, you should start thinking about letting go of that relationship.

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4. You feel insecure

After trying your hardest and seeing no change in your relationship, it is easy to start wondering whether there is something wrong with you. You may start to question your worth and may even believe that your needs are unimportant.

5. You make excuses for their behaviour

Every time your partner shows a red flag, you make excuses for them. Continually justifying your significant other’s actions means that you are avoiding the truth and enabling the one-sided nature of your relationship.

6. You are always apologizing

red flags of a one sided relationship
A woman looks away from her partner. Photo: Alex Gree, pexels.com
Source: UGC

Is there a power inequity in how you hold space for each other? In one-sided relationships, you may find that while one person is considering the other’s emotions, the other partner may be indifferent. You will find that you are always apologizing to end arguments, even if you are not on the wrong side.

7. Your gestures are not reciprocated

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When is the last time your partner did something nice for you? If you often surprise your partner with meaningful gestures and they never do the same for you, you may be in a one-sided affair.

8. You always tip-toe around them

Tiptoeing around your significant other is one of the biggest signs of a one-sided relationship. Since you don’t want to upset your partner, you may sweep some issues under the rug in a bid to maintain the peace. Conversations between you two remain pleasant on the surface at your expense.

9. You are never sure about how they are feeling

Another red flag in a relationship is a lack of transparent communication. Because of this, you may find yourself guessing what your partner is feeling toward you at any moment. Since you are unsure where they stand, you may find yourself spiralling and trying to guess whether they still feel that way toward you.

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10. You are always the only one bringing up issues with the relationship

If you are the pursuer in your relationship, you will often find yourself bringing up issues you would like to solve while your partner avoids them, waiting for you to fix them. Any confrontation causes your partner to get defensive.

11. Setting boundaries angers them

Setting boundaries is a normal part of every relationship. You may find that your partner gets angry when you try setting boundaries for yourself. That is a sign that you may be the only one putting effort into your relationship.

12. You feel like you are not on the same page

Important decisions in a relationship require both parties to be on the same page. In one-sided relationships, one party often puts in the effort, while the other is not as excited or receptive to this news.

13. You start trying to change them

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Another way to know whether you are in a one-sided relationship is if you start trying to change your partner. You may try to hint at how you may like them to treat you. This ultimately does more harm than good since you will end up burnt out.

14. You sugarcoat the situation to your loved ones

Whenever you talk about your partner to your loved ones, you often find yourself changing details about what happened. This is because you know that telling the real story may raise questions about them.

15. There is little talk about the future

Healthy relationships aspire to have a future together. So what does it mean when your significant other avoids talking about the future with you? If they actively avoid this conversation, that is a red flag. Always remember that you should never force a relationship.

16. They pick their friends over you

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red flags of a one sided relationship
Man and woman photographed arguing. Photo: Monstera, pexels.com
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In a one-sided relationship, you often realize that even your partner’s friends are more important to them than you are. Are you dating someone who would gladly ditch plans with you to spend time with their friends? This is a sign that you are in an unbalanced relationship.

17. You are the only one who wants change

Healthy couples usually end up inspiring each other to change. It may be as small as inspiring your partner to read a book or even taking a walk. Do you find that your partner never wants to join you? You know what it means.

18. They keep you away from important people

Are you in a relationship but have never met your partner’s friends or family members? This is a big red flag. A loving partner would encourage you to meet and spend time with those important to them. Hiding you away from those important in his life implies that you are not as important.

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19. They say one thing and then do another

Does your partner claim that you are the love of their life but still aren’t putting in any effort to prove it? One of the most glaring signs that you are into your partner more than they are into you is they often say one thing and do another.

20. There is broken trust

In an unbalanced relationship, you might feel like you cannot safely rely on your partner. Broken trust can be repaired if both parties are involved.

Frequently asked questions

  1. What is it called when a relationship is one-sided? A one-sided relationship where one partner puts in all the effort is usually known as an unbalanced relationship.
  2. Why am I always in one-sided relationships? Most people stay in one-sided relationships because they have shared good times with their partner in the past and are optimistic that it could happen again.
  3. What is considered a red flag in a relationship? In a relationship, a red flag is anything your partner does that has serious implications for your relationship.
  4. How do you know you are in a one-sided relationship? It is one-sided if you are always the one putting in the effort in your relationship.
  5. What do you do if you are in an unbalanced relationship? The best thing would be to leave since you cannot change someone.
  6. What are 3 red flags in a relationship? Some red flags include a lack of transparent communication, broken trust, and a lack of reciprocation in the relationship.
  7. What are some effects of being in a one-sided relationship? One-sided relationships can be heavy on the pursuer and usually affects their mental health negatively.

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What are the red flags of a one-sided relationship? The above signs will show you whether you are in a healthy relationship with your partner or not. If you can't change them, it is good to leave the relationship.

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How can you tell the person you are involved with is a narcissist? Narcissism falls on a spectrum. It is important to note that narcissism is a trait but can also be part of a larger personality disorder.

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