When is it time to leave the relationship?

Is it time to leave your relationship? See more relationship tips pictures.

You've given it your all. You've even tried counseling. You're considering leaving the relationship and even though things still aren't working right, you're not sure if leaving the relationship is the best thing to do. We talk about when to leave a relationship in this article so you can decide for yourself if leaving the relationship you are in is right for you.

Dennis Neder, an ordained minister and author of Being a Man in a Woman's World, says as long as kids aren't involved, it's time to break up a relationship when there's no longer any mutual benefit. "If you aren't getting what you want or need from being with someone, it's time to move on," says Dr. Neder.

While many people may view this as selfish, Dr. Neder says it can't be good for either person when one person is unfulfilled. It's much healthier to find a relationship that works for you and gives you what you need, than to cling to one that causes dissatisfaction.

"We all know people who are in unhealthy relationships, but either will not or cannot leave them," says Dr. Neder. "These people use all of their energies propping up the sagging relationship. Life is too short for this," he continues. In Dr. Neder's opinion, relationships should enhance your journey. The problem is, many people give up their journeys to take on someone else's. It's better to decide where you're going, find others who are on their own paths and then see where you might fit together, he says. "Give more thought to what you're looking for before creating your relationships," he advises. That way you're more likely have healthy relationships and end unhealthy ones quickly.

Breaking Up Is Hard to Do

Many people involved in long-term relationships find that they have given up their dreams, plans and future to "fit" into someone else's. The difficulty in breaking up often stems from people forgetting how to be self-sufficient. This creates a fear of loss and insecurity, which fuels the desire to keep unhealthy relationships together.

Neder says that we need to understand that we're alone throughout our entire lives — even when we're with someone else. "It's not a bad thing," says Dr. Neder, "in fact, it is quite freeing for most people."

Should You Break Up?

Everyone experiences low points in their relationships. That's normal and most couples work through these times. While the experts say there are no formulas for deciding when to break up, there are signs to watch for. If you experience more than a few consistently over a long period, it's probably time to move on.