How to make a Relationship Work
Read this if you want some advice on how to make your relationship work smoothly.
- Communicate (talk) with each other about anything and everything. Share your deepest thoughts, wishes, hopes, needs, wants, and dreams. Your social life, your school life, your family life, what's going on in your life right now, your childhood/past, accomplishments, ambitions, goals, values, and beliefs.
- Trust each other on all levels possible. Trust each other on everything from believing that neither will cheat to telling something to someone that was private info. This is essential before any physical involvement occurs.
- Support each other and be there for each other. Through the good, happy, sad, and bad times. No matter what. Just be there with your hugs and kisses and comfort. If the other person doesn't want your comfort and doesn't want to talk about it, they will say so. At that time, you need to back off about it and not return to it until they want your help in any way and want to talk. Feel like you can count on each other, be reliable, loyal, and be there when you each need each other most.
- Always be honest with each other and never keep things from each other. Honesty does not simply mean not lying. Don't hide anything from each other. Honesty can be scary, but if you want a truly emotionally close and intimate relationship, then honesty is required. Don't be afraid. Your mate should reassure you that he or she can be trusted with your secrets, fears, or problems.
- Spend time together - carve out date times for togetherness as a couple. Spend time talking with each other and going out on dates, and doing other relationship-building activities. Really get to know each other and build a connection between you that's strong and enduring. Make an effort to see each other (in-person) and talk on the phone maybe once a day or every few days.
- Spend time apart - be independent, keep your sense of self, never lose yourself or your voice in the relationship. You have to have some space too - space physically and emotionally. Don't suffocate each other. Be okay to do your own things separately once in awhile. Spend time with freinds, family, by yourself doing your hobbies and pursuing other things. Grow as an individual too - not just a couple.
- Apologize, forgive, and make up with each other. This is essential to your couplehood. If you threaten to break up with each other after every fight or argument, you're never going to really solve anything - take breaking up off the table. Talk the issues that come up through, over and over, until the issue is resolved and both of you feel okay moving on.
- Remember to keep most things private between you two. A relationship is between two people - you and your girlfriend or boyfriend, not anyone else. Don't involve others, no matter how close you feel to them. If someone shares with you and confides in you (emotionally and physically) resist the urge to tell sensitive details to anyone. It's special, personal, private, between you two, and should be treated as such. Plus, it's all a respect thing - don't share personal info shared between you two as a couple without getting permission first out of respect for the other person.
- Remember to maintain your relationship on a regular basis. Work on it. Work hard at keeping it positive, upbeat, healthy, and the very best it can be. Work on it every single day. Whatever you can do to improve your relationship or make it healthier do it! Try thinking about, and then doing, at least one thing each day that will make your other half's life a little easier, brighter, or better. By challenging yourself to do at least one nice thing for your partner every single day, you stay focused on keeping your love front and center.
- Romance is an essential - at least some of the time. Candles, candlelight, compliments, stargazing, watching the sunset or rise, fireworks, romantic bubblebaths, showers, and romantic dinners are good ideas. Make some things you do and some places you decide to go to on dates romantic.
- Really make an effort to understand each other and respect your differences. See from each other's point of view. Empathize with one another too. If you really don't agree, that's okay. Just respectfully disagree and allow your partner his or her opinion.
- Respect each other in all areas of life - Don't pressure, abuse, suffocate or neglect one another (emotionally, verbally, physically).
- Remember that every person, couple, and relationship is different. Don't compare your relationship to anyone else's - not your parents or other family members, friends, coworkers, that couple whose relationship seems perfect, etc. Every couple makes their own love rules, love agreements, love habits, love routines, and so on. Just focus on you two and making your relationship the best that it can be.
- Show affection. Hold hands, kiss, hug, cuddle, snuggle, or wrap arms around shoulders or waists. Become close and really comfortable with each other physically.
- Know each other inside and out. Share every part of yourself (your heart, mind, and soul), not just your body. Have meaningful and deep conversations once in a while, be open with each other, take an interest in the other's life, be emotionally available and intimate with each other. Have an emotionally close and healthy relationship.
- Love is an essential - Maybe the most important thing for a relationship. There's no "maybe" about love - you just know if you love someone. You enjoy sharing with each other anything and everything, you respect and trust each other, you're always honest with each other, you enjoy spending time and having special moments with each other, the good times outnumber the bad times, you're there for each other, you have great conversations, you're close on almost every level possible, you can balance the time you spend together and the time you spend apart, you can balance the time you do have together on emotional activities and conversations with the physical activities and conversations. You would do anything for each other and protect each other, you're kind to each other and show affection, and you spend time out of choice, not dependancy.
- Remember that intensity of emotion can ebb and flow over the years. There may be times when you are less aware of your loving feelings, more into your own interests, perhaps things have even become a little routine. Those are the times to remember all the wonderful things you have done together, and still want to do. You choose to feel committed and close, so when you feel yourself drifting or taking your love for granted, plan a romantic date night, do something special for your love, and just remind yourself of all the wonderful qualities he or she possesses that made you fall in love in the first place.
- Have Saturday or Friday "date nights" for you as a couple (basically a weekly date) if you're in high school.
- If you're in college, talk over your schedules and have a weekly date night too.
- If you're not in college or high school (adult) then work around your work schedules and carve out special time for just you two once a week as well.
- Use relationship resources to help your relationship - e.g., books (Relationships For Dummies, The Complete Idiot's Guide To A Healthy Relationship, Emotional Fitness For Couples). Also - there are relationship therapists, counselors, and psychologists who can help.
- Remember - there is always somewhere to go and something to do (as a date) with each other - so be creative and search around and think for ideas on what to do and where to go.
- Remember, if you're boyfriend and girlfriend, basically anywhere you go together and anything you do together is a date. Have fun and bond with each other.