16 Signs You Have a Right Person, Wrong Time Relationship

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You’ve met your soulmate. Their gaze is intoxicating. Love makes you dizzy. You’d do almost anything to keep this feeling, but the timing couldn’t be worse.

The temptation is too great. I’ve done it myself! You dive straight into a right person wrong time relationship. Must it end, or can you work it out?

In this post, I’ll help you answer that question.

It’s pretty safe to say that most of us, as adults, have had a right person wrong time relationship. It’s far more common than you might think. So why haven’t you heard of it? Maybe you have and just didn’t realize.

The Right Person Wrong Time Relationship

The right person wrong time relationship is one where you instantly connect emotionally, spiritually, and intellectually with another person… but the timing is bad for various reasons.

Finding out if you have this type of relationship is important because it can critically disrupt your life and put you off balance. However, it can also help you grow emotionally and intellectually. If you’re willing to work it out, your differences can make your relationship stronger.

Today, we’ve come up with a list of signs to help you determine where you stand with your partner… is he or she “the one”, or the “for now”?  I’ll also share practical and supportive suggestions.

16 Signs You Have a Right Person Wrong Time Relationship

Sometimes, it’s hard to tell if you’re in a relationship with bad timing because of the give-and-take nature of relationship building. The balance is constantly shifting, even in healthy relationships.

The signs can be subtle or glaring. It all depends on the individuals, their personalities, and the situation.

Sign #1. Another Relationship or Responsibilities are in the Way

You’ve met the right person, and your chemistry is undeniable. You feel like they’re the soulmate you’ve searched for all your life. However, there are obstacles.

One or both of you is already in a relationship or marriage. You have responsibilities like children, elderly parents, or others who depend on you.

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You’re in love, and there is not another soul who can make you feel so loved in return. But you’re feeling stressed, concerned, even worried.

If priority relationships and responsibilities become hindrances, you’ll need to consider how you can correct the balance. Sometimes, it simply takes an honest conversation to even things out.

These are a few ideas to help you get started:

  • Have an honest and clear conversation with your partner about your concerns.
  • Discuss expectations and workarounds with others in your life.
  • If you’re married, carefully consider your spouse’s feelings, and discuss the situation honestly with them.
  • Be gentle with your loved ones, but don’t lie.
  • Seek counseling.
  • Meditate and reflect on your self-awareness.

The Jed Foundation offers ideas about managing relationships and responsibilities.

Sign #2. Your Gut Tells You It’s Wrong

You’re in love, and there is not another soul who can make you feel so loved in return. But you’re feeling stressed, concerned, even worried.

Maybe you can’t even put your finger on it. You just know something is not right in this relationship.

What do you do?

  • Listen to your gut, putting your emotions aside.
  • Try to observe the bigger picture by lifting yourself above the situation.
  • Consult with a trusted friend about your concerns.
  • Don’t compromise your values or needs.
  • Have the courage to make the right decision.

Sign #3. Family and Friends Warn You

Sometimes, family and friends will often warn you about little things they notice about the other person. Just be sure to confirm the truth and debunk any gossip. Don’t immediately buy into everything you hear.

It could be about information family and friends know personally or secondhand, a/k/a “gossip.” Or maybe they simply noticed troubling signs themselves which are worth checking into.

There’s only one thing you can do: listen. Don’t just hear them out. Truly listen. Then, find the truth.

Sign #4. One or Both of You are on the Rebound from a Recent Relationship

Even though you’re single, it doesn’t mean you’re ready to start a brand-new relationship, no matter how right it feels. As vulnerable human beings, it takes time to fully mend.

The best choice is to allow time to heal from a previous failed relationship. It is only fair to you and the other person to enter into a new relationship in a healthy state. You must be fully available emotionally.

Keep in mind, there is no one else that can heal you, but you. A rebound relationship might work out, but don’t expect it to be the thing that makes amends for past relationships.

Sign #5. You Need Someone to Make You Feel Whole

“You make me feel complete,” is a catastrophic insight into your right person wrong time relationship. It says that you are entirely dependent upon the relationship to be a whole person.

Later, when trouble arises, burnout, anger, and resentment will likely overtake the relationship. It becomes an unhealthy attachment that can lead to abuse and serious turmoil.

You are what makes you whole. You need no one else to have that confidence and value, and you should feel complete before you get into any relationship. It will keep you grounded. Your wrong time relationship can work if you’re willing to put in the work on yourself.

Psychology Today offers great ideas on how to be complete within yourself. It begins with awareness.

Sign #6. Your Future Plans and Ideas Aren’t in Sync

If you and your partner have plans that flow down radically different paths, there will likely be issues. If your ideas, beliefs, religion, or politics push you away from one another, you’ll need to have honest and clear communication about how to meet in the middle.

A top relationship goal for couples is to live on the same frequency. Frequency doesn’t mean you’re the same at everything. It means that you have understanding, communication, and a willingness to compromise.

Consider these aspects of couples’ frequency:

  • One aspect is that you share the same ideas and values about your life’s journey.
  • Another aspect is that disagreements are manageable because you’re on the same wavelength and appreciate your differences and individuality.
  • You support one another in personal interests, ideas, and opportunities.
  • Finally, you encourage one another to grow and become happier humans.

Sign #7. Your Stable Lifestyle and Relationships could be Upended, or Not

In an ill-timed relationship, you may each live in different cities or states. Maybe you even live in different countries.

Realizing that long distances are not great for nurturing a relationship, one of you may entice the other to move. This can cause huge problems unless you’re both willing to communicate and compromise.

A few topics for discussion may be:

  • Who will move?
  • Planning a workable strategy for maintaining relationships with family and friends
  • Job opportunities
  • How to create a support network in the location where you move
  • Planning the move, finances, and expectations
  • Positive, new, exciting possibilities

Sign #8. Your Age, Lifestyles, Values, Experiences, and Expectations are Vastly Different

While an age gap may not directly mean it is the wrong time, it can indirectly split off into significant differences in views and values. Communication is key to resolving any issues.

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You may have a relationship at the worst time if either of you can’t produce or maintain what the other wants or needs.

Society is always evolving. Perceptions, experiences, and expectations change as well. Gender roles, belief systems, taboos, and human experiences have shifted a lot over the years.

Many age-gap relationships work out beautifully, and so can yours. It will take a lot of understanding, patience, and compromise, but it can work.

Sign #9. Your Right Person Wrong Time Relationship Fails to Bring Out the Best in You

When your partner brings out the worst in you, pay attention. There are valid reasons why it happens. They are indicators that something isn’t working in the relationship.

Here are several reasons why your worst may come to the surface:

  • Failed expectations and disappointment
  • Manipulation to push your buttons
  • Growing distrust
  • Increasing vulnerability and feelings of loss of control
  • Feeling trapped

But hold on! These are things you can do to turn it all around:

  • Counseling
  • Calm, clear, honest communication and understanding
  • Self-reflection and evaluation of your expectations
  • Learning how to disagree and still be in love with your partner
  • Building trust
  • Finding self-value and self-confidence
  • Expanding your social network, interests, and hobbies

Two Trees Counseling in Nashville explains how relationship counseling can help.

Sign #10. Either of You Can’t Give What the Other Wants or Needs

You may have a relationship at the worst time if either of you can’t produce or maintain what the other wants or needs. These can include physical, emotional, psychological, financial, or other expectations.

The best way to avoid a complication of wants and needs is to address it right away. Have a good sit-down conversation with your partner about what’s happening.

How do you do it, and what do you say?

Try this:

  1. Create the atmosphere so it is relaxing and non-threatening.
  2. Maybe set it up with food and drinks.
  3. Make sure the timing doesn’t interfere with work or other events.
  4. Block off distractions and disruptions as much as you can.
  5. Stay in a positive, uplifting, and understanding mood.
  6. Begin the conversation with a light-hearted topic to set the tone.
  7. Lead into the discussion by asking about their wants and needs.
  8. Listen.
  9. Express your wants and needs gently.
  10. Hopefully, both of you can offer creative ideas to satisfy the other.
  11. Consider counseling to enhance the healing and possibilities for positive growth.

Cosmopolitan suggests being honest from the beginning about what you can offer the relationship.

Sign #11. Only One of You is Motivated to Put in the Work

When you’re in a badly timed relationship, a one-sided slope may develop. If one person does most of the work, it could be a sign of failed communication.

It could be that your partner is in your life at the wrong time because they haven’t learned how to communicate, share responsibilities, or be attentive to your hard work. There are several reasons why it happens.

If you’re finding yourself being the one who apologizes all the time, makes up to ease the tension, shows affection first, or goes out of your way to set up activities, speak up.

Sacrificing your desires and needs or always paying expenses is not how it has to be. There is a distinct imbalance that you may be able to work through with your partner. However, it will take honest and clear communication. You'll hear that a lot because it is real.

Here are a few tips:

  • Stay calm.
  • Plan the conversation ahead of time.
  • Try to see the other person’s perspective.
  • Contribute ideas to level the field.
  • Continue communicating often to resolve the issues.
  • Most of all be affectionate, appreciative, and understanding.

Just because you have the right person at the wrong time doesn’t mean it can’t work out. It just means that both of you will have to commit to working diligently to change the outcome.

Sign #12. One of You Expects the Other to Accommodate Their Lifestyle

Unfortunately, there are often expectations for one person to adapt to the other’s lifestyle. It may be the wrong timing if you’re not living on the same plane. Because we all come from different backgrounds and experiences, this happens more often than not.

Maybe your partner wants you to join them in going to clubs every weekend. They might even expect or demand that you be a homebody like them. There are innumerable variations to how this could go.

The crux is that there is a division or one-sidedness in the relationship that, with time, may develop into distrust, resentment, anger, or worse. Note: Lifestyle doesn’t have to be a deal-breaker!

Your right person is right for you for good reasons! If they have good qualities, don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater. Change how you see the whole thing.

Give these ideas a try:

  • Remember their good qualities and yours too.
  • Discuss your feelings with your partner.
  • Think of creative ways to live your individual lives with your unique interests.
  • Then, when you’re together as a couple, shape your relationship to match the best things that both of you have to offer.

Sign #13. Issues Arise Involving Money, Finances, Careers, and Financial Planning

Though the chemistry, emotions, and intellectual fire burn wild between you and your partner… money matters could douse the flames rather quickly. A jaded relationship that goes this route probably means it’s not the best time in your life’s journey.

To avoid burning the house down, take a shot at these suggestions:

  • Calmly communicate your expectations and concerns with your partner.
  • Get financial counseling.
  • Seek couples’ counseling, if needed.
  • Appreciate your differences.
  • Never use money or a career as an arrow.
  • Make financial plans and goals together.
  • Do something fun to ease the tension.

Sign #14. An Inability to Calmly Discuss Past Problems or a History of Bad Relationships

Because we all choose different paths, consequences or problems may have entered our lives in the past that need to be discussed calmly and openly with our partners.

You and your partner should be able to communicate about the most influential moments of your lives with one another. Keep it honest and non-judgmental.

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Family and friends will often warn you about little things they notice about the other person.

Serious past issues or a history of bad relationships may indicate other weaknesses or differences to be resolved. Open, honest, calm discussions can clear up many concerns.

Focus on your partner’s good qualities, share your thoughts, listen, understand, and let them know you accept them and trust them.

Sign #15. Substance Abuse Begins to Surface

When substance abuse begins to rear its ugly head, it’s a sign that you may be in the right person wrong time situation. You can help but don’t enable. It’s one thing if the person has sought help for recovery. It’s another if they weren’t serious about it or never really tried.

Here are things you can do to try to save the relationship:

  • Communicate your concerns.
  • Consider how substance abuse will affect your life.
  • Seek counseling.
  • Support and encourage the person to go into rehab, if needed.
  • Set strict boundaries and mean it.

Remember, no one can change another person. Their choices belong to them alone. You can support them to the extent that it doesn’t interfere with your own peace of mind, goals, and dreams.

Maybe, at another time in your lives, substance abuse or the issues that led to it wouldn’t have been a problem. That was then, and this is now.

You can hang onto your partner’s good qualities and help them through this tough time. You don’t have to throw in the towel. Everyone’s situation is different. You’ll have to decide what is right for you.

Sign #16. Either of You Obsesses About a Past Intimate Relationship

When you or your partner obsesses about a past lover, you’re in the right person wrong time relationship. It is ill timing if healing has not occurred, and the person is still living in a world of grief and yearning.

Be sure to listen to how they speak about their ex. If the ex was crazy, always victimizing them, or plotting their demise, something is wrong besides just the timing. Words matter. Listen carefully.

Another thing to observe is comparisons. If your partner constantly compares you to their ex, there’s a problem.

While understanding the pain of a broken heart, consider these tips for healing:

  • Communicate your concerns and how their behavior makes you feel.
  • Seek counseling to learn more about healing.
  • Display kindness and compassion to your partner and yourself.
  • Don’t sacrifice your identity or values.
  • Create new bonding experiences for you and your partner.

Grief is not an easy thing to heal, but it can be accomplished if you both put in the work.

Final Thoughts on Signs You Have a Right Person Wrong Time Relationship

If your relationship has bad timing, you’ll likely see and must heed the warning signs. Best case scenario, it will give you the opportunity to learn and grow with your partner benefit from their good qualities… instead of dismissing them forever.

Conversely, it may not be worth the effort and you might find yourself migrating toward someone and something that is a better fit for you in the here and now. Maybe even forever?

Take a look at our article on 10 Ways to Get Your Life Back Together after a Major Setback for thoughts on taking care of yourself during or after a difficult relationship. 

And if you're looking for more articles on relationships, be sure to check out these blog posts:

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