6 Nagging Questions You Don’t Want To Brush Off If Your Partner Says ‘Don’t Worry’

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No, you’re not “crazy.” When someone tells you “don’t worry” often that’s a very useful red flag you don’t want to ignore.

Of course, you shouldn’t worry about every little thing in a relationship — after all, no relationship is perfect. But there are some worries that are more important than you think, and deserve your attention in order to do their job: help you.

Anxiety and worry get a bad reputation as if ALL worry is bad or unfounded … especially when it comes to relationships. Maybe it’s your partner who tells you not to worry or your friends, or you just sense that your worry is the problem.

It’s easy to wish that you could just relax and tell yourself everything will be OK all the time.

But, sometimes relaxing is NOT the best thing to do. Your anxiety surfaces for a reason — to help you understand what is going on and how you feel about it.

Many anxieties are absolutely worth listening to and honoring. Getting to the bottom of this kind of anxiety is sometimes the most efficient way to bring about the solutions you seek. The pain and confusion of anxiety is often the first sign that something is wrong, or an important situation is in jeopardy.

If your instincts are on fire and your partner says ‘don’t worry’, here are 6 nagging questions you don’t want to ignore even if your partner brushes you off:

1. Is she faithful?

Fearing betrayal is one of the most common fears we have in a relationship, and it isn’t always an unfounded fear. Perhaps she cheated before, or you have. Or, perhaps she’s a hopeless flirt and you wonder just how far she might go someday.

No matter what the cause, know that if you find yourself questioning your partner’s fidelity, you’re likely picking up on something important that’s worth paying attention to.

2. Is he keeping secrets?

There is nothing wrong with having secrets. Privacy, after all, is a key part of maintaining healthy boundaries.

However, there’s a difference between privacy and a habit of being secretive or evasive. If your guy regularly keeps secrets from others, you aren’t wrong for wondering what secrets he might also be keeping from you.

Keeping secrets is the hallmark of a skilled liar, and is central to a person’s ability to carry out an affair.

3. Can you trust her?

Beyond the specifics of fidelity, trust is a centerpiece of a healthy relationship. Determining whether you can truly trust your partner is hugely important, spanning almost every area of life.

Can you trust her in an embarrassing moment not to shame you? Can you trust her with your money or property? Can you trust her to consider your needs as equal to (or even more important than) his own when necessary?

If you hesitate a bit when she asks to borrow your car, computer, or credit card, your instinct might be worrying you rightly. A relationship can never work with a person you don’t trust with your safety, your heart, or your future.

4. Are you good enough?

Do you wonder if you’re attractive enough, sexy enough, a good enough partner?

Though these concerns are totally normal, being too distracted by them is a signal of self-consciousness that has no place in a truly healthy relationship. Perhaps he judges or comments on what you wear, your body, or how you act. Maybe you sense his dissatisfaction through his excessive praising of others or his lack of positive attention. Does he just seem impossible to please?

If you find yourself wondering if you’re good enough for him, and agree with all the ways you could improve yourself, chances are he is actually not good enough for you!

5. Is she happy enough?

Sometimes we can get stuck worrying whether our partner is happy and what we can do to make things better.

And while there is nothing wrong with caring about our partner’s happiness, worrying about her happiness is often a sign that something is amiss. Sometimes a preoccupation with our partner’s happiness is a strategy to avoid honestly assessing our own.

If you find yourself wondering if your partner is happy, flip the question around and ask yourself if you’re sincerely happy — the much harder, but more important question to ask yourself.

6. Is he really “the one?”

If you catch yourself wondering if he’s “the one,” you probably feel a measure of dread or discomfort around him on a day-to-day basis.

Are you uncomfortable around him? Do you worry what he’s going to do or say? Do you feel a sense of quiet dread when you’re with him, or when you think about your relationship? Is it hard to imagine a happy future with him?

When your relationship seems like the ideal relationship “in theory” but you rarely relax or feel at ease … or you find yourself working too hard to keep the relationship afloat … that pit in your stomach (that anxiety) is trying to help you.

These quiet whispers of worry, or dull feelings of dread, are your feelings working for you, not against you. 

They’re signaling you to face and address (even if it’s painful) the reality you’re avoiding.

Listening to and honoring your worries often feels difficult, scary and painful, but there is usually truth in those feelings. Recognize your anxiety for what it is — a resource designed to help protect you. This is especially true when someone tells you “don’t worry” about something that’s causing your heart pain.

Talk it out and get the answers you need, it’s the only way you’ll truly be able to trust your partner, and yourself.

This article was originally published on YourTango.com. Reprinted with permission. 

Alicia H. Clark, PsyD