By Rachel Shatto
Are you too obsessed with your relationship? “If you’re so focused on them that everything occurring in your world relates to them,” you’re heading into obsessive territory, NYC relationship expert Susan Winter tells Elite Daily.
Oh, the honeymoon phase. We all love that time early on in every relationship where each moment feels magical and every love song feels like it finally makes sense. You and your new boo go into a kind of love hibernation during the honeymoon phase, where you spend every moment you can together. When you’re apart, you think about them constantly and drive your friends crazy talking about them. We tend to hold this time of the relationship up as an ideal, but it can, and sometimes does, go too far. What are the red flags you’re too obsessed with your relationship? It’s important to note them, because when passion turns into codependence and fixation, it can take a serious toll on your mental health and well-being.
By knowing how to spot the trouble signs early on, you’ll know when it’s time to take a step back from the relationship and do some thinking. If you’re already bordering on (or are already full-on) obsessed with your partner, it doesn’t automatically mean you have to end the relationship — it just means that you should address the toxic behaviors immediately. To learn more about what to look out for, I reached out to experts who broke down the signs that you’re beyond the normal honeymoon phase and have crossed into unhealthy territory.
1Your Whole World Revolves Around Your Partner
It’s normal to think about your partner throughout the day — they are a big part of your life, after all. But when you reach the point where, “you’re so focused on them that everything occurring in your world relates to them,” you’re heading into obsessive territory, NYC relationship expert Susan Winter tells Elite Daily.
Diana Dorell, dating coach and author of The Dating Mirror: Trust Again, Love Again, tells Elite Daily that when when thinking about your partner becomes disruptive to your work and personal life, it’s time to pull the emergency brake on the relationship. For instance, if “you are unable to focus at work because you are constantly wondering if they are missing you,” or “you begin avoiding friends and family and drop everything to take a call from the person you’re seeing.”
2Your Relationship Has Become All You Talk About Now
When you’re out with friends, do you catch them zoning out or rolling their eyes whenever the subject of your relationship comes up? And if you’re honest, do you realize you’ve been talking about them pretty much the entire time you’ve been with your friends, and you just can’t seem to stop yourself? Winter says that’s a behavior you need to take a closer look at. “These are the ‘thought bursts’ that irritate your friends, as every topic of conversation you share becomes a prompt to talk about your mate once again,” she explains.
And if most of what you say about your partner consists of long-winded venting sessions, that’s another indication that there are deeper problems in the relationship. “If you’re constantly venting to your friends about your relationship, chances are you’re obsessed with the direction and depth of the relationship,” behavioral scientist, relationship coach, and creator of Your Happiness Hypothesis Method, Clarissa Silva tells Elite Daily.
3Your Emotional Well-Being Is Dependent On Their Mood
Have you stopped feeling like your feelings are… well… yours? Winter says that if “you’re either happy or sad depending upon where you stand with your partner,” you’re too obsessed with your relationship. What she’s describing is not feeling empathy with your partner’s emotions, but rather, when “your relationship becomes the center point of your emotional barometer.”
4You’re On An Emotional Roller Coaster
Winter says that another sign you’re obsessed with your relationship is that your emotions have become erratic and unpredictable. “Obsession has wildly vacillating ups and downs,” says Winter. “One minute you’re on top of the world and the next minute you’re in despair wondering if your lover still loves you.” One clear sign of obsession is noticing extreme emotional changes in yourself, because “our partner has gained an elevated status in our life,” says Winter. “This throws off our rational thinking and leaves us as a slave to their whims.”
5. All Of Your Resources Are Going Into The Relationship
Along with the mental and psychological toll obsessing about your relationship can take, it can also take a literal financial toll. Winter says this can often come from a good place of trying to get the relationship on a healthier track, but when “the bulk of your money is spent either through counseling, relationship advice, or related products and services,” you may have gone too far.
6. You’ve Stopped Doing Things You Used To Love To Do
The last sign may be subtle, but it should ring all of your alarm bells that there’s a serious problem in the relationship. As Dorell points out, when “you have stopped doing the things that make you happy just for you (taking that dance class, reading for pleasure, etc.),” and “they get put on the back burner,” you may be in an unhealthy place in your relationship. It’s probably time to take a step back and revaluate what this partnership is really bringing into your life — and what you’re giving up.
In a healthy relationship, there is going to be some compromise. However, as Silva explains, it’s about “striking a balance where both partners are happy.” She warns that if you have begun “acquiescing to your partner’s needs most of the time” or “defining what you want based on someone else in order to please them, you may be replacing your life’s desires in the long run. When you thought of your life desires, lifestyle requirements, and dreams it was the result of two people co-creating those outcomes.”
Ultimately, a healthy relationship is about balance and compromise for both parties — both things that are the opposite of obsession and, when they’re lacking, can actually create obsession. So, if you’re still unsure if what you’re feeling is normal or something to be worried about, Dorell offers one last bit of advice.
“The best gauge is joy,” she says. “How joyful do you feel? If it’s the honeymoon phase, your hormones are flying high but you also can function in a positive way when you are alone. When you’re obsessed, you base everything you are doing on that other person’s perception of you versus leading your life and enjoying the high of being together when you are.”