4 Reasons Your 'Relationship' Isn't A Real Relationship At All

Any relationship can last, but a real relationship is loving and harmonious.

Annoyed in relationship LightFieldStudios | Canva

A relationship is one in which both people are themselves, yet there is no shortage of intimacy. No fear of doing what you love, being who you are, or taking time for yourself. In relationships, neither person needs the other to complete them. Both are awake to themselves, their feelings and their thoughts and are open to the flow of love and attention. It's about two equals celebrating together rather than needing something from the other.


A relationship like this is both people in harmony. And that's exactly what it feels like: in tune, relaxed, and just plain fun. Entanglements, on the other hand, look and feel very different.

Entanglements may look like a relationship. You might spend a lot of time together, you've met each other's friends and family, and people refer to you as a couple. But you're not having a real relationship — at least not one that is loving and harmonious.

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Here are 4 reasons your 'relationship' isn't a real relationship at all.

1. You keep having the same issues.

When you have the same old argument with your partner for the umpteenth time, that's a pretty good sign you're likely in an entanglement. Having the same problem in your previous relationships or picking partners with similar issues is a tip-off, too. Patterns that repeat — especially from relationship to relationship — indicate you have unresolved feelings from the past, creating a destructive dynamic that keeps you from enjoying harmony.


the same argument again

Photo: Dima Berlin via Shutterstock

2. You don't feel safe or understood.

When it is hard for one person to let the other person feel their feelings and tell the truth about them is one of the clearest signs of entanglement. Entanglements feel like you have to shut down a part of yourself. If you're feeling like your partner doesn't get you, and you're not free to say exactly what's on your mind, you know you're not in a real relationship.

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3. Someone is always right.

In a real relationship, each person is aware of their role in a problem, and the priority for both is relationship growth. Entanglements are power struggles. Both people are vying for the title of victim, thus making the other the perpetrator. Nobody ever wins.



4. It's just so hard.

If you're feeling drained by your partner, you're likely caught up in an entanglement. In a harmonious relationship, both people take responsibility for any issues and come up with creative solutions to further add to the positive feelings they share.

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Here's what to do if you're in an entanglement.

So what if you have the terrible feeling you're in an entanglement right now, or you've been in entanglements before?

Relax, it's completely normal.

Most people have been in an entanglement, and a lot of them have been in many. We all come to relationships with unresolved issues from our past, and we naturally look to our partners to make us feel good about ourselves. And so it's always a surprise when we finally think we've found love, only to experience pain and frustration.

The problem often isn't choosing the wrong partner, it's not looking at the root cause of our disenchantment. So, here's what you need to do.


Step 1: Identify that you're in an entanglement

Knowing whether you're in a pattern of entanglement is key to resolving it once and for all. Otherwise, you won't move forward, and you're doomed to keep repeating the pain and struggle.

Step 2: End the entanglement or transform it into a real relationship

Once you know you're dealing with an entanglement, you can harness all the energy you've been spending on conflict, and instead use it to come up with creative solutions. You can either transform the entanglement into a real relationship, or you can end it with peace of mind, armed with the insight you need to create love and harmony in the future.

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Katie and Gay Hendricks are experts who have written over 30 books, trained thousands of coaches, appeared on Oprah, and hosted seminars around the globe.