13 painful signs you love your partner more than they love you

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Love is in many ways undefinable, let alone quantifiable.

Being able to measure someone’s love and compare it against your own feelings is therefore pretty tricky.

But if you feel like you love your partner more than they love you, it suggests something is up in your relationship.

Chances are you feel like you are giving more than them, and you question their level of commitment and effort.

Here are some clear signs that you are right to do so!

1) They put their own needs and wants above yours

You consider them in your decisions and your plans. They on the other hand just tend to suit themselves.

Your relationship focuses far more on what they want, and your needs don’t seem to factor into it.

Your partner won’t do anything they don’t feel like doing, even though it would mean a lot to you.

You spend your time together doing the things they enjoy, eating the food they like best, going places they want to go, and even seeing the movies they prefer.

2) They often let you down

Disappointment is an emotion you are all too familiar with when it comes to your relationship.

They don’t show up for you in a variety of ways. That may be in practical ways, or emotionally.

They may cancel plans at the last minute or without very good reason.

They might make you promises but fail to see them through.

Their flakiness makes you feel like an afterthought.

When they let you down, it becomes clear to you that you are not a priority to them.

3) They are your number one priority, but they put lots of other things before you

When Friday night rolls around and you are looking forward to a weekend with them, they already have other plans.

They’ll be spending the evening having drinks with friends, and you’re not invited. Oh, and then on Saturday they arranged to see an old buddy.

They might be able to squeeze you in on Saturday evening for a few hours. But on Sunday they want to get a bit of extra work done.

Here’s the thing:

We all have a mixture of priorities that we must make room for in life.

That can include friends, family, career, hobbies, and any goals we’re working toward.

We won’t always come top of our partner’s priority list, but we should always feel up there.

If your partner puts you last, it says something about their strength of feeling for you.

4) You don’t feel like they have got your back

The whole point of being in a relationship is becoming a team.

That partnership is what makes you feel supported.

And that’s exactly what you aim to do. You try to support them in whatever way you can.

You listen to them, encourage them, and offer a helping hand in whatever way you can.

You do your best to be their non-stop cheerleader. Yet you don’t get this back from them.

They don’t seem as interested in your life as you are in theirs, and it shows. 

5) They don’t make an effort for you

Things may tick along okay in your relationship, as long as you keep your expectations to a minimum.

But as soon as you want anything from your partner at all, they act like you are demanding too much.

They don’t seem to try in the same way that you do.

As long as you conveniently slot into their world, then it’s alright. But they’ll never go the extra mile or put themselves out for you.

6) They expect you to pull far more weight in the relationship than they do

Because your partner puts in the bare minimum, it’s up to you to make up the shortfall.

That leaves your relationship incredibly unbalanced.

You are putting in way too much effort and work — and that goes for the emotional labor too.

You initiate most of the messages, conversations, and plans.

If you didn’t, you’re not sure how things would ever get arranged. You question how long it would be before they would reach out to you.

7) You’re always telling them how much you care, but they never express their appreciation for you

I am a big believer that actions speak louder than words. We don’t always need to be showered with compliments and praise to feel loved.

But your partner doesn’t seem to use actions or words.

Whilst you often let them know how you feel, they don’t.

It leaves you feeling very insecure and unsure about their true feelings for you.

You may constantly seek reassurances from them, but whatever their answer you don’t feel satisfied.

8) They don’t treat you with the respect you deserve

If there is one non-negotiable fundamental in any relationship that must be there, it’s respect.

Without it, you have an unhealthy relationship that most likely has poor boundaries.

If you think your feelings are stronger, you may find yourself giving more and more to compensate.

You may put up with increasingly inappropriate behavior because you are too scared to rock the boat.

Examples of disrespect in a relationship can include:

  • Disloyalty (including cheating)
  • Nagging
  • Criticism
  • Put-downs (even if they are disguised as “jokes”)
  • Stonewalling
  • Manipulation and pressure tactics

9) Whenever conflict arises, you are always the one to back down

If you didn’t, you’d be stuck in a stalemate.

For the sake of keeping the peace, you are the one who tries to mend bridges.

Often that means saying you are sorry, even when you’re not in the wrong.

They can’t ever seem to swallow their pride.

Eventually, out of fear of losing them or simply because you cannot take the tension anymore, you are the one who relents.

That may mean that you are frequently the one who has the make all of the concessions, as we’ll see next.

10) You often make sacrifices and compromises that they’re not willing to make for you

In order to make your relationship work, you’ve given up plenty. And you know you would be willing to do so in the future too.

You would move for them, or make big life adjustments because they mean that much to you.

Deep down, you know you cannot say the same about them. If your relationship wasn’t convenient to your partner, you question whether they would fight for it.

It’s pretty much always you who is bending over backward to accommodate them.

11) You’re ready to commit, but they’re still trying to dodge it

The uncertainty around the status of your relationship is yet another thing that makes you feel insecure.

You are ready to make things official or take the next step. They seem hesitant.

Perhaps they say they’re not ready to completely settle down yet. Or they may just say that labels don’t matter, so why bother? 

Whenever you try to talk about how they feel, what they want, and what the relationship means to them they try to avoid it, or never give you a straight answer.

That leaves you with some serious questions about your future life and whether they envisage spending it together.

12) They don’t want to talk about the future together

When we are sure about how we feel and what we want in a relationship, we should have no problem making plans for the future.

If your partner flat out refuses to think about it they may be a commitment-phobe, emotionally unavailable, or not see you two as a long-term thing.

Yes, it is important to be in the moment, but we also want to build something in a relationship.

13) They openly confess they have doubts about your relationship

You know exactly how you feel about your partner and your relationship.

You don’t even have to think about it, you are 100% in.

They, on the other hand, have expressed some doubts.

  • They have told you they are not sure what they want
  • They have expressed an interest in seeing other people
  • They have suggested you take a break or take a step back
  • They have initiated breakups in the past (even if they always come back eventually)

These uncertainties tell you that they are not as committed as you are.

We all express love differently

It’s important to remember that we are all different.

The experiences we have throughout life shape us and impact the way we prefer to give and receive love.

Having different love languages may mean you need to learn to accept that your partner may not show their love in the same way that you do.

Some of these signs may not mean that your partner doesn’t love you as much as you love them. It could just mean they are more selfish and self-centered than you in a relationship.

But that’s not much better!

If they are not capable of loving with the same intensity as you, or in ways that you need from them, it undoubtedly puts a strain on your entire relationship.

As a bare minimum, you should feel valued, respected, and secure in your connection. If you don’t, it is time to find someone who can offer you what you deserve.

Pearl Nash

Pearl Nash has years of experience writing relationship articles for single females looking for love. After being single for years with no hope of meeting Mr. Right, she finally managed to get married to the love of her life. Now that she’s settled down and happier than she’s ever been in her life, she's passionate about sharing all the wisdom she's learned over the journey. Pearl is also an accredited astrologer and publishes Hack Spirit's daily horoscope.

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