How To Fix An Emotionally Draining Relationship

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unhappy couple looking away from each other
Love

Relationships are a lot of hard work and both people have to put in an enormous amount of time and effort to make it work.

While going through rough patches in a relationship is normal, you should never feel mentally or physically exhausted — especially if you’re the only one feeling that way.

As Clinical Psychologist Patricia O’Gorman explains, "Relationships aren’t always easy but they shouldn’t be depleting your energy."

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At times, it can become difficult to realize that you are feeling emotionally drained especially if you’ve been in that relationship for a long time. You can easily overlook the red flags in your relationship in the fear of it ending.

Not feeling emotionally supported by your partner in your relationship can lead to mental health issues and it can affect other parts of your life such as losing focus at work or becoming distant from family and friends. 

There are a few questions you can ask yourself to help identify if your relationship is emotionally draining:

Do you normally feel yourself walking on eggshells around your partner?
Do you find yourself constantly worrying about their problems?
Do you no longer feel affectionate towards them?
Do you enjoy being alone more than being with them?

If you answered "yes" to any of these questions, that signals that you may be in an unhealthy relationship and it's time to start finding ways to fix it.

Here are 6 ways to fix an emotionally draining relationship.

1. Evaluate and acknowledge the problem.

Many people ignore problems thinking they will go away on their own. However, that's rarely the case, as these same issues will continue surfacing until they're dealt with.

As Bhavna Dalal, a leadership coach, explains, "Improving emotionally draining interactions begins with awareness of it."

It's important to know where you stand in your relationship. Give yourself time and space to carefully think about what the problem is and why you find yourself emotionally drained in the relationship.

Once you have a clear view of the "why," the "how" becomes that much clearer.

2. Communicate with your partner.

Once you've figured out the problem, it's time to word it out to your partner.

While you may have been struggling for a long time, your partner may not know about what you’re going through. They don't know what's going inside your head and vice versa.

Communicating effectively will help you both gain insight into each other's feelings and perspectives.

3. Love and care for yourself.

Forgetting about yourself and your priorities in a relationship is common. While caring for your partner’s needs, you forget that you are a person with your own needs that demand the same level of effort and attention.

Before caring for someone else, you need to care for yourself. In the process of re-learning how to love yourself, you will be able to set boundaries in your relationship and show your partner how you want to be treated by them.

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4. Find time to do what you love.

Everyone needs to relax once in a while. Spend time doing the activities you enjoy such as meditation, going for walks, watching movies, or cooking. It will give you a break from your heavy emotions and bring you joy.

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This will reduce your stress levels and have a positive impact on your mental health.   

5. Reach out to friends or family.

While it may not be easy, sharing your problems and feelings with people close to you is always a good idea. Struggling alone is probably the worst type of struggle especially when no one knows about it.

Talking to someone can be deemed helpful as your loved ones are one of the few people who are there to support you without judgment.

You might find a solution or some help from them. If they're unable to help, they can still serve as good listeners. Sharing your problems isn’t always about finding solutions. Just letting them out will make you feel better.

6. Spend some time apart from your partner

Taking some time apart doesn’t necessarily mean you have to break up. It just means you have to re-discover yourself.

An emotionally draining relationship often demands a lot of you. You become mentally and physically exhausted. Escaping from those negative emotions will feel like a breath of fresh air.

Being away from each other will also help you both grow and evolve as an individual.

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Sanika Nalgirkar, M.F.A. is a writer and an Editorial Intern at YourTango who writes on entertainment & news, lifestyle, and pop culture topics.