If you ask people what “the key to making a relationship last” is, one of the most common answers you’ll get is:
“Communication.” (That, as well as “trust,” or “respect,” or whatever…) But the thing is…
“Communication” is not the secret
And whoever thinks it is needs to do a real gut-check on this one.
Folks who think this do so because they struggle with it. They struggle with emotional boundaries — what’s theirs, what’s their partner’s, what they should own, what their partner is to blame for. They think “sharing” is the same as “solving,” as though “talking about it” means things are going to be “fixed.” They also struggle with anxiety and passive-aggressiveness — especially when, shocker, “communication” alone doesn’t work.
Develop (Your Own) Emotional Maturity
This includes other words people use to describe a good partner: kind, respectful, trustworthy, and honest. (As one person put it: “reasonable and rational and not selfish or petty.”)
Uh, yeah… “Emotionally mature.” You all mean “emotionally mature.” But it’s not just about finding someone who is because we don’t control other people. It’s also about being someone who is.
Love is acceptance just as much as ourselves as others. Loving and caring for ourselves first means that we develop the self-respect and strength necessary that we don’t bury our self-worth in others, either in subjugating them or “winning” their affections.
“When divorced couples are asked what would have made it work. They say communication. Married couples (over 10 years) when asked what makes it work. Say respect.” So in all you do, respect your spouse.
It’s one of the most important thing you need to understand to make a relationship work, and if you’re not getting it, you are going to fail (or suffer so hard, which frankly is still “failing,” breakup/divorce or not.)
Take responsibility for your own emotions, wants, and needs. Take ownership of your own happiness (or unhappiness), and don’t hang it on your partner.
Neither person is the “alpha” in a healthy relationship, couples neither “win” (or “lose”) a “fight,” because “fights” aren’t what they have. Mature couples have discussions, or disagreements. Not verbal boxing matches or duels of the wit.
a.) Healthy couples don’t “fight” not because they “avoid” conflict, but because they discuss, or disagree. They both seek to understand before being understood, listen, show compassion, etc. They both hear their partner’s side as much as sharing their own. They both know the difference between a mature, adult “discussion,” and an immature “fight” with a winner and loser.
b.) Understand how to apologize. (Note: “I’m sorry that you —” and “I’m sorry, but —” are not apologies. Those are bullshit, emotionally immature statements.) So learn to apologise properly.
it’s a very important thing in every relationship. Make yourself as open as a book and leave no room for any suspicious act.
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