You're not moving backwards but neither are you moving forward with your partner. You're just stagnant and stuck because they're not right for you.
When you spend a certain amount of time with your partner, things start becoming so familiar in the relationship that you and your partner become stagnant. You both become stuck in a web of complacency that makes you blind to the red flags that are telling you that your not with the right partner. You both care for each other, think that you love each other, and that's making you shut your eyes to all the things that is wrong in the relationship. If you notice these things, it could be signs that your partner is not the one for you.
For a long time, things between your partner and you seem to be in a safe spot. But while the relationship hasn't changed for a long time, you feel like you have changed in ways you don't like. You no longer feel invigorated or passionate about things like you used to at the beginning of the relationship because your partner doesn't bother showing any interest in them.
As relationships cross two years, five years, or even a few decades, the love and energy between you and the right partner shouldn't fade away. But if you feel like every new day is no different from the one before, where your partner doesn't take the effort to keep things interesting in the relationship or doesn't respond positively to your efforts in doing so, it shows that the relationship is running on autopilot and your partner doesn't want to do anything about it.
When your partner always makes it about their day, their work, or their likes and dislikes, but never has the patience to listen to what you have to say, it could show that your needs in the relationship will remain unfulfilled. When you say things out loud or insist upon them, your partner might agree to do things for you. But they might not be caring or attentive enough to fulfill even the unsaid needs that a truly loving partner would be able to do.
Every Saturday night might be date night and every Tuesday you might put on one of your favorite movies as a relationship ritual. But these traditions have started to feel meaningless because you don't enjoy them anymore. You just do it because you are so used to it, but that warm feeling of spending time with your partner is no longer there.
Whether it's about having kids or about moving to another city or the suburbs, your partner and you may have always had different opinions. In the beginning of the relationship, you thought you could look past it but now you find yourself longing more and more for what you want but your partner may never agree to see eye to eye. It's worse when you can't even talk to your partner about it because you are afraid of how they may react.
You avoid talking about certain things and you never mention your interests because you feel like they don't matter to your partner anyway. But when this goes on for too long, you start feeling like you no longer have any space in the relationship because your partner has been making everything in the relationship about them. And rather than enjoying their company, you start feeling like their presence exhausts you.
Spending all your time with someone who is always criticizing you and always making you feel like you're not doing enough can be toxic. It may have seemed harmless at the beginning of your relationship but having to go through that constantly can hurt you emotionally. When your partner makes everything a competition where you have to prove yourself, it could be that they're not the right one for you.
In everything you do and everything you say, if your partner's feelings are your only concern, it could be harmful to you. It's important that you do things for yourself and just for your own needs without always having to worry about what your partner's reaction might be. And if you have stopped doing that, it shows that the relationship with your partner is forcing you to bury your true feelings at the back of your mind, put on a mask, and force yourself to believe that things are going perfectly fine.
The bottom line is that no relationship should ever feel like a trap. It's possible to feel like you both care for each other and have a supportive relationship. But when you really think about it and feel like your needs have been sacrificed for way too long, but still pretend like everything is fine, it would be best to reconsider your relationship with the person you are with.