How can you really know your partner is the person you want to be with forever?

You love your partner – but is it enough?

Enough to sustain the speed bumps, the differences, the changes, the dirty dishes, the debt, the piles of bills, the in-laws, the temptation to cheat, the temptation to be alone, the temptation to blow it all up and move to Peru to start again?

Love is not always black and white. Especially when you throw careers, children, and disparate visions of what the future looks like in the mix.

How do some couples do it? How do they stick it out with the stead-fast belief that, no matter what obstacles are hurtled in their direction, they will make it through hand-in-hand?

That feeling you’ve found ‘your person’ cannot be distilled into a single thought, or moment in time. But what can is the opposite – the moments women stopped and thought, ‘this isn’t what I want’. When the realisation dawned on them that, no, this man or woman is not the person I want to live my life with. The clarity that they need to leave.

So, we asked the women of the Mamamia office, what was that moment for you?

1. Our ambitions didn’t sync up

For another Mamamia staffer, it dawned on her that she and her ex had to break up when the stark difference in their level of drive became apparent.

“I realised we weren’t supposed to settle down together when he still didn’t have a job because he was working on his ‘PhD’… the PHD that he never actually worked on.”


“From that moment I began to realise our life ambitions were worlds apart.”

Other women in the office agreed, one writing: “I felt like I had to push him to do everything, and it was exhausting. He had no motivation to aim high, and in the end I really felt more like a mother than I did his girlfriend.

“His lack of passion for anything extended beyond work, too. There was no spontaneity in our relationship. I grew sick of sitting on the couch and doing nothing all day, every day.”

Listen: Why are so many people consciously re-coupling? The Mamamia Out Loud team discuss. (Post continues…)

2. The first time I met his mother

“I was besotted with my ex, right up until the moment I met his mother,” one Mamamia staffer said.

“Don’t get me wrong – she was lovely. The kind of woman who would hug you the first time you met. It wasn’t her who was the problem.

“It was her son, my ex.

“I had always been dubious of the way Luke spoke about women, and seeing him with the woman who gave freaking birth to him only crystallised a scary reality: my (kind of) boyfriend didn’t respect women all that much. Or, you know, at all.

“Not only did he denigrate her intelligence and job on a regular basis, he was just a rude jerk to her whenever they crossed paths.

“The first time I met his mother was one of the last times I saw him.”


3. There were so many little things that added up

“For me there wasn’t one day, or moment,” another woman from our office said. Instead? It was a culmination of little things, over a long period of time.

“It definitely changed things when he spoke about how sh*t I would be with kids even though I’m very good with them,” she said.

“I also began to question our relationship’s longevity when I realised he constantly underestimated me, was rude to my friends and my family.

“Oh, and when he gave me the clap that he’d contracted from a 17-year-old.”

Yep… that’ll do it.

4. The butterflies completely disappeared

“I never expected that giddy feeling to last the entire relationship,” one Mamamia writer said. “But it got to the point where I wasn’t only not excited to see him, but I saw it as a chore.

“A boyfriend should never, ever be a chore – OBVIOUSLY – so we went on a break very soon after. That ‘break’ lasted five years, so….”

Another woman agreed.

“We went on a break and I couldn’t have cared less. In that moment I knew it was truly over.”

What was the moment you realised your partner wasn’t the person you wanted to ‘do life’ with anymore?

You can listen to the full Mamamia Out Loud episode below…