We all know that communication is key in making any relationship work, but we don't always open up to our partner about our thoughts and feelings. Some of us expect them to just know what we're going through, while others just feel incredibly weak and end up making excuses for something our BF did or didn't do. In case you need some nudging on when to speak up, here it is. And remember: you have to be strong for yourself too.

1. He's still close with his ex.

If he spent one-on-one time with her, confront him but don't lash out and go ballistic just yet. Calmly ask him how she is, just so he knows that you're keeping an eye on his movements. After he tells you what's up with her, drop it.

If he does it regularly and it bothers you, let him know that you're not a fan of the idea and that you'd appreciate it if he didn't have contact with her. Tell him you don't understand why he needs to have her around when he has you to talk to.

If you feel like he's become distant because of his ex, tell him you're not willing to stay with someone who doesn't value you and who clearly isn't over his past yet. Ask him if he's willing to drop her completely for you.

2. He's spending too much money and he's in debt.

Even if you're not living together or married and sharing your money, you have to look out for him and influence him to be better with money. When you're going to confront him about his spending and borrowing habits, make sure you tell him that you care about him and that you don't want him to be burdened and suffer the consequences in the future. That way he'll see where you're coming from and not think that you're just telling him what to do.

3. He complains a lot about his situation but doesn't do anything to change it.

Is it about his job or his lack of one? His health? Whatever the case, if he complains a lot but doesn't help himself at all, get tough. Tell him he doesn't have the right to complain because he's not doing anything to improve his life. If you're afraid to be assertive, shake that feeling off. You have to be firm so that he'll wake up and take action.

If he gets offended, let him know you're confronting him because you love him and you're concerned. Tell him you don't want him to be miserable just as much as he doesn't want to be in the dumps forever. It would help to say that you believe in him, since we all need that faith to get ourselves up again.

4. He's pressuring you to do things that go against your values.

If it's the first time he's pressured you into something, say no and move on. If he asks why, explain your side nicely so he understands where you're coming from (and you guys won't fight).

But if he's doing it constantly and he's seriously judging you for being boring or a kill-joy, give him a piece of your mind. Tell him to quit bullying you and that you don't deserve that kind of treatment. If he doesn't change, dump him.

5. He keeps doing something that disrespects or hurts you.

It's possible he doesn't know what his actions are making you feel. And he really won't know it if you don't spell it out for him. Don't be quick to tell him to stop. Tell him first how his behavior/habit is making you feel. And then listen to him explain himself. Who knows, he might be dealing with some heavy issues and just feels lost at the moment. You might be able to help him get on his feet again.

Snap at your guy if you've confronted him about something hurtful he did but still continues to do it and says that he's not intending to disrespect or hurt you, that you're just making things up and being crazy. Tell him that he clearly doesn't care about your feelings. And tell him you don't want to be committed to a guy who doesn't care about you.

6. He's restricting you from going out with your friends.

Ask him why before anything else. If he thinks your friends are bad influences and gives concrete instances of them being destructive, you should probably listen to him.

But if he's being possessive of you and doesn't want you to have anyone else in your life other than him, tell him you have a life outside your relationship, and that's how it's supposed to be (for him too). Explain to him how much your friends matter to you, and assure him that he won't lose you when you have dinner with them.

7. You just found out he cheated on you.

Okay, you can get angry now and start yelling at him. Nothing he says in his defense will ever make what he did okay. The only thing you'll take is "I'm sorry," and it doesn't mean you can forgive him just yet.

This story originally appeared on Cosmo.ph.

* Minor edits have been made by the Femalenetwork.com editors.

SCREENCAP: Jane The Virgin/CBS; GIFs: Giphy

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