Not a single thriving relationship has ever suddenly gone through a break up.
When things are ended, the deed comes after a slow creep, the confusing period of self-rationalizations, growing contempt, and willful denial.
After the creep swells for long enough, though, we begin to listen. Feeling unfairly irritable is not an example that you're a jerk, but that you need to listen. Avoidance does not automatically denote pure selfishness, rather forgivable distance or dissatisfaction.
The manifestation of the widening gap takes many forms, all of which Redditors have come across. One question beckoned a list of the great variety of signs that may arise.
FagnusTwatfield asked, "What are some signs that a relationship has run its course?"
The Heart-Sink Alarm
"If you find that you can only relax and be yourself when they aren't around, crushing you with the weight of their silent judgement and disapproval, it's way past the expiration date." -- downhereforyoursoul
"When you turn the corner driving home, and feel disappointment when you see her car in the driveway - because you know the minute you step in the door she's going to start crapping on you again." -- lucky_ducker
Opposite Sides of the Same Coin
"You've bottled your real feelings up so much that now everything they do or say fills you with contempt." -- breakfastinthemornin
From personal experience, the biggest indicator is when tensions should be high, you should be upset or arguing, but you just don't care anymore." -- ThunderPantsDance
Things that Thrive are not so Bitter
"When you start fighting about a lot of meaningless things. In many cases, I'd say it's a manifestation of the hesitation to deal with the quite harsh truth that you no longer feel that you want to be with the person."
Cold, Telling Indifference
"The sight of them does nothing for you. Getting a text or phone call from them elicits an eye-roll. You try to avoid them. You cannot hold a conversation with them because everything they say is irritating. You really could not care less about their day or anything they have to say to you. You find yourself fantasizing of a life without them... and it makes you smile."
Visceral Cues are Sometimes More Attuned
"While I couldn't pinpoint any one thing that was wrong, I started to get the sense he was annoyed with me, I said something wrong, he didn't want me around, etc. Trust your gut. Even if he's not experiencing anything wrong, you're clearly sensing something, so talk it out. Maybe he is cheating on you. Maybe you have unfounded trust issues."
"When you notice that your partner doesn't miss you (or vice versa) after being separated for a while. If you've been apart for a couple weeks or longer and your partner still feels no particular urgency to see you or talk to you, then the relationship is dead."
Forced or Compelled?
"When spending time is something you have to give effort to actively think about and plan out as opposed to something you look forward to and excitedly long for. I know that's what it was for me: she became a block in my schedule instead of the reason my schedule existed."
When "Alone Time" is the Rule
"When you're not enjoying your time around them any more. There's a difference between wanting a night away or a strong life outside of your relationship and full-on disliking their company." -- Responsible-Coyote
Read Your Words
"When you ask Reddit what signs show a relationship has run its course." -- Toxxxixx
"When you go to AskReddit to see if sexting is considered cheating." -- onidels
Where Do You Go When the Chips are Down?
"You have something big happen and they are not the first person you call."
"I had a car accident at like 5am and didn't even bother calling my now ex, he was useless and I called the people that mattered."