Healthy Romantic Relationship
09/ 06/ 2016
Are you in a healthy romantic relationship? Find out now.
A healthy functional intimate relationship is based on equality and respect, not power and control. Think about how you treat (and want to be treated by) someone you care about.
Here are a few of the factors to consider as you take your “relationship temperature:”
• How well do you and your partner listen to each other? When you and your partner talk, do you look each other in the eye and really hear what you are each saying, or is one of you already planning a response before the other has finished talking?
- • How willing are you to take responsibility for your role in your relationship? Most people are good at finding fault in others; particularly those with whom they are in relationship. How capable are you of both identifying your relational limitations and working to change them?
- • Have you been willing to make compromises for your partner? Both in a general way and in your daily routine, are you conscious of your partners’ likes and dislikes, sensitivities and emotional needs? Likewise, is your partner willing to make compromises for you? In order for a relationship to be balanced and healthy, each person needs to assert his or her own needs and be responsive to those of their partner.
- • Do you and your partner recognize the qualities you enjoy and appreciate about each other? Are you able to express these things, or does either of you leave them unsaid? Over time, couples have a tendency to take each other for granted, not realizing that recognition, appreciation and affection need to be regularly exchanged, in whatever way works for both partners.
- • Conversely, when you and your partner disagree, are you able to express your concerns without feeling cut off or worried about how your partner will react? If you are both able to express concerns, are you able to do so gently and respectfully or does either of you become harsh or ridiculing? How you express the things that bother you matters at least as much as what your concerns were in the first place.
Basic Steps to Maintaining a Good, Healthy Relationship
- • Be aware of what you and your partner want for yourselves and what you want from the relationship. • Let one another know what your needs are & be able to communicate them assertively. You aren’t psychic & neither is he/she.
- • Realize that your partner will not be able to meet all of your needs – some needs will be met outside of the relationship.
- • Do not demand that a partner change to meet all your expectations. Work to accept differences that you see between your ideal (how you would like things to be) & the reality (how they really are).
- • Expect conflict – be willing to negotiate & compromise on the things you want from one another.
- • Perspective-taking & empathy – try to see things from the other’s point of view and to accept them. You don’t have to agree to respect and understand differences.
- • Realize that healthy relationships take continual work and effort to maintain. When differences come up, try to negotiate.
While each of these factors is distinct, together they share common themes: mutual respect, openness and consideration. Take time to consider this: your care, attentiveness and respect in your romantic relationship are the gifts that matter most every day.