After over 30 years in a committed relationship including 20 plus of those years in a good marriage, I am often asked how my husband and I have make it work. There is no perfect relationship but with some key tools there are strong relationships. We met in college and first started out as two crazy college kids with healthy libidos. Through friendship overtime we developed into a couple.
Here are what I believe to be some of the most important components to our relationship. Just like all aspects of life focusing on some basic rules will help lead to success.
When my husband and I first met, we didn’t have an agenda. We were young and still teen-agers and enjoying life. Just like other young couples we had our ups and downs. But early into our relationship, we realized that we are young. We didn’t focus on where the relationship would lead.
New relationships should not focus to hard on the future goals of the relationship. With time six months into dating then decide where things are going. This is more so for younger couples. Most times mature individuals 35 or over have goals in mind but even then let the relationship have time to blossom. During the beginning of the relationship just enjoy each others presence and the newness of your romance.
My husband and I both kept and still have our own identity outside of our marriage. We have always had our interests and things that are important to us as individuals. We do share many interests but even those items we can enjoy separate from each other.
Individuals in healthy relationships should have other people in their lives. With that said healthy relationships do not work well with outside influences, whispering advice in your ears. Sometimes family and friends mean well but need to not give unsolicited advice. However, if and when they do you need to learn how to filter out the noise of nonsense. So always keep the friends that respect you and your relationship.
During our early relationship even during the no agenda phase my husband (then boyfriend) talked. Honest and open talks about our day, goals, and dreams. We spoke about our childhood as time passed and we felt comfortable to peel away the façade of perfect. Neither my husband nor I tolerate drama, so we became close and closer over time.
My granddad said it best, “I never learned to read minds, even after fifty years.” With the passing of time and the growing of our commitment to each other, my husband and I begin to develop talks about what next. Let your relationship dictate how the conservation will develop. Remember that honest communication requires sincere listening. In addition, continual communication is needed, there is no expiration date on communicating.
In conclusion, when you enter into a new relationship allow yourself to be friends first. Even if there is a physical aspect friends communicate and accept each other at face value. Time will tell you where the relationship journey will take you. Watch and see how your new partner interacts with family and friends; you will be given an insight into how they will treat you too.
Finally, I purposely did not throw around the word love. Love is made of energy and energy can and does grow over time. It can also contract and dissipate. As I stated in the first point no agenda allows the buds of love to take hold; if that is indeed meant to be the direction of the relationship. With that note always trust your instincts, there are instances where love or respect may no longer exist. Remember love yourself and above all else enjoy the journey…may yours be long and joyous.
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