“I can’t commit to this relationship” is probably one of the most over-used breakup lines ever, and the reasons that come with it are unsurprisingly accepted and legitimised by most. While these reasons may appear persuasive at face value, more often than not, we ultimately come to realise that they in fact belie more superficial excuses that cause one to evade a relationship.
So what are some of the classic reasons people use when they say they can’t commit to a relationship? And what are the real excuses behind them? Here are five of the most common ones.
1. We are both looking for different things in life.
Spoken like a fortune teller uttering a prophecy, the person using this excuse seems to intent his omniscience, that he already knows the direction both of your lives are heading towards. How can that be possibly true?
In fact, the person using this excuse is often too selfish to shoulder the blame for ending the relationship alone, instead opting to place it on the other person. If you ever come across such a person, be glad that he or she is now out of your life.
2. I have to focus on my career at this point in life.
No doubt, a person’s career is one of the most important aspects of life. To declare a singular focus on work is therefore relatable and acceptable to many. However, who said that career and love has to be mutually exclusive? While the saying, “behind every successful man is a woman”, might have its detractors, one cannot dispute the fact that there have been examples when love and career were complementary and mutually reinforcing.
It was Laura Bush who successfully encouraged George W. Bush to quit drinking, eventually paving his road to become the Governor of Texas and later the president of the United States of America. Therefore, the “I want to focus on my career” reason may sometimes betray an unwillingness to juggle different priorities, or even worse, a poorly concealed excuse used to terminate a relationship.
3. I want to take things slow.
The “I want to take it slow” person appears to be rational and experienced. He or she understands that a relationship needs nurturing and is something that cannot be rushed into. No doubt. But what happens if you have been with the person for months and it feels like the relationship has barely inched forward? At this point of time, if the above reason is used again, beware!
It is highly likely that the person involved is set on saying that he or she can’t commit, no matter how long you’ve been dating. “I want to take it slow” seems to have become a cruel euphemism for “I shall stay with you until someone better comes along”. When you realise this, you will probably do better staying away from the person as well.
4. You are too good for me. I don’t deserve you.
This sounds like an amazing reason because while it gets the job done, it ensures that no hard feelings are remnant. The problem is not with you, who is perfect by the way, but with me. Unfortunately, if we think and look a bit harder, this is simply good old-fashioned bullshit.
The person who says this is likely someone who is not even willing to try and become better for your sake. If the person feels that you are not worth the effort, you can be equally sure that he or she is not worth your time as well.
5. I’m afraid of getting hurt again.
Accompany this sentence with a pair of puppy eyes brimming with tears, and it makes for a potent, super effective concoction. But guess what? We are sick and tired of this one too. Like it or not, everyone gets hurt. Scars stay and bad memories remain. Deal with it and move on.
But to be afraid of getting hurt again, reveals a subtle yet unmissable accusation – that the potential relationship will also hurt and even more painfully, and that this relationship is not worth a shot or taking the risk for.
Commit to memory these five “I can’t commit to this relationship” excuses and more importantly, understand why while they may seem like “deep” or meaningful reasons, they are nothing more than empty words. Pre-empt and save yourself from a relationship that will eventually head nowhere!