How Do I Know Whether I'm Ready To Fall In Love?

Medically reviewed by Paige Henry, LMSW, J.D.
Updated November 17, 2023by BetterHelp Editorial Team

Are you feeling unsure about whether you're ready for a relationship? Maybe you haven't started a relationship yet and think you want one, but you feel unsure where to start or how to find a partner to connect with. Perhaps you're in a relationship already but unsure whether you are ready to commit to the partner you're currently with. 

How Can You Tell If You Are Relationship-Ready?

Before asking yourself "Will I ever find love?" assess yourself first if you're ready to be in one. Below is a discussion of some of the possible signs you're ready to embark on a journey toward creating a loving relationship that lasts, regardless of whether you're looking for a romantic partnership or a platonic relationship, with or without a sexual component. 

While the factors discussed below are often beneficial before you enter into an intimate relationship, you don't necessarily have to have all of these in place at once to start a fulfilling partnership.

You Love Yourself

Before making "how long does it take to fall in love" your concern, make sure that you know how to love yourself. You may not feel ready to love someone else until you learn to love yourself. Loving yourself can mean seeing yourself honestly, being compassionate and forgiving to yourself, and being respectful of your own boundaries and time. 

Starting from a positive space may make it easier to love someone and continue a healthy, long-lasting relationship with them. When you love yourself, you may know your worth. You may be in touch with the things that make you happy, and you feel you don't need another person to fulfill you. 

Approaching a relationship having learned to love yourself can help you evaluate your potential partner more honestly and work more constructively inside that relationship.

Loving yourself may help you set healthy boundaries, and a loving partner will often acknowledge and respect those boundaries. Having solid boundaries can make a relationship healthy and strong.

If you're already in a romantic relationship, you may not necessarily need to leave the relationship to find self-love. Practicing self-care, such as exercising, spending time in nature, or practicing meditation, may help you find self-love while already partnered. 

Additionally, if you find yourself mistreated, loving yourself can mean you feel more able to walk away. However, if you're struggling to leave an abusive situation, you're not alone, and it isn't your fault. 

If you or someone you know is experiencing abuse, contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) for help, information, and resources.

You Have Financial Stability

Having your own financial stability may be beneficial for many reasons. Even if you and your partner have a strong relationship and don't plan on parting ways, accidents and other unforeseen circumstances could happen. 

A woman with headphones on is laying in bed with her arms up; she has a starry expression.

If something were to happen to your partner, you might be left in unfavorable circumstances if you are not financially stable on your own. Being financially stable on your own could also allow you to leave your partner if you need to make that choice. 

Financial stability may also allow you to fulfill lifetime goals with the person you choose to be with. You may hope to buy a house together or travel the globe. Maybe you want to start a family together. 

If you value financial stability, you might also want to ensure your partner is financially stable before entering into a relationship with them. Studies show that problems with finances are one of the top reasons for divorce and breakups

You're Content Being Alone

The relationships you keep may be stronger and more meaningful when you go into them with a whole heart and an independent attitude. It could seem like a contradiction in terms, but knowing how to be content with being alone can be a good predictor of whether you're ready for a long-term relationship.

Your days may be filled with happiness and fun, with or without a partner. Maybe you spend a fair amount of time with your friends or enjoy a solitary brunch on the patio at your favorite restaurant. If you are happy with your life, you may not need a romantic partner to make you feel fulfilled.

Being comfortable with being alone can also mean that you are better able to wait for the right person to come along. In healthy relationships, partners may feel happy and content with themselves and one another. Studies show that healthy relationships can improve mental health as well. 

You Can Fairly Negotiate Domestic Tasks 

Although you may not want to move in with your new partner immediately, this decision might be in your future, or you may already live together. Think about how you want to navigate the nitty-gritty of daily living in the same space with another person. 

How Can You Tell If You Are Relationship-Ready?

The person you love may not live life the same way that you do. The toilet seat could be left up overnight, or the toiletries in the bathroom could be moved around. You also may not have the same philosophy of what having a clean home means. 

In some cases, couples have different ideas about which partner does which domestic tasks. Navigate these conversations together and ensure that both you and your partner understand your expectations for one another. 

If your partner expects you to care for your children, clean the house, pay the bills, work a job, and care for their emotional well-being, you may not be in a healthy or balanced relationship. Studies show that an unfair division of domestic labor has been connected to toxic relationship dynamics

You Have Time For A Partner

If you are in the middle of building your career and working long hours, it may not be the right time to look for a new partner.

When you commit to a relationship, you often give your partner your time and attention. Even though the amount of time you have to spend at work might be beyond your control, you may consider it if you're deciding whether to date. 

If you spend a lot of time at work and not much time with your partner, you could risk your partner feeling undervalued or underappreciated. On the other hand, it can also be unhealthy to neglect your work life to make your partner happy. A healthy relationship often includes a healthy balance between work and home life.

You're Not Afraid To Seek Help

Life may not always feel enjoyable. Many people struggle with their daily lives and pasts. Working through and understanding your own complex emotions may aid you and your partner tremendously as you work to create a vibrant, fulfilling relationship.

Jonathan White, LPCC
Jonathan has helped me so much in these past 10 months! He has helped me process situations, form good, positive, healthy habits, and encouraged me to do the things I love and get back out there and start dating again (even though it's scary)!! I HIGHLY recommend Jonathan.”

Knowing how to ask for help has been shown to be a sign of maturity, and getting the help you need to keep yourself healthy can also benefit your relationship. 

If you are struggling with issues that affect your ability to start or maintain an intimate relationship, you may wish to speak to a licensed therapist. You can bring all your concerns, whether large or small, as they are clinically trained to assist you.

Online therapy can effectively ensure your and your partner's schedule can fit in time to work with a therapist. You'll avoid the hassle of taking time out of your days to travel to an office separately. Online therapy is also highly adaptable to your needs, letting you use various tools and media to contact your therapist.

Relationship therapy has proven to have benefits lasting up to four years. A study from 2009 reported that couples who received tools through therapy for expressing their emotions enjoyed more vital communication and alignment of values. Single people can also benefit from therapy focused on relationship issues and goals.

If you want to try online therapy, consider a platform such as BetterHelp for individuals or Regain for couples. You're not alone, and reaching out for help can be a powerful first step in gaining insight into your relationship needs. 


Many individuals wonder if they're ready for a serious relationship. If you're unsure, you might want to try casual dating or spend time on your own for a while to process your needs. If you want professional guidance, consider reaching out to a counselor to learn more.

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