Human beings thrive in healthy relationships. If you ever find yourself wondering whether certain aspects of your relationship are healthy, you're not alone. People question their relationships from time to time, even when things are generally good. You'll know that your relationship is headed in the right direction if you see these six signs.
Sign #1: You Have Healthy Conflict
Let me say this loud and clear: fighting is healthy! When you and your significant other argue, you're showing that you care enough about the relationship to put in the effort to make it even better. Constant or abusive fighting is not healthy or acceptable. When you're arguing, it's important to remember that you're on the same team, working together to solve a problem. You're not on different sides, working to win. If you or your partner ever resort to name-calling, get physical, or do other things that make you feel unsafe, it's essential to get away and get professional help.
Sign #2: You Have Shared Values
It can be nerve-wracking to talk about values with your partner, but it's essential. The more serious the relationship, the more critical it becomes that both people have aligned values. Religion, parenting, spending habits, alcohol use, lifestyle choices: these are hot button issues for many people. If some of your values aren't perfectly matched, it doesn't mean that your relationship is doomed. It's merely something to be aware of as you head closer to living together, getting married, or having kids.
Sign #3: Accepting Friends and Family
We've all been there: a family member or friend lets you know that they don't care for your significant other. While this can be frustrating, you should decide for yourself if concerns are valid. The people closest to you know you well and may be able to see parts of your relationship for what they are, rather than through the rose-colored glasses that you may still be wearing in the first few months. It's possible that people who have negative things to say may be jealous, but that's not usually the case. If your friends and family give your significant other glowing reviews, consider that a sign that you're on the right track with someone who seems to be a good fit.
Sign #4: They Understand The Importance of Alone Time
When last did you have some time to spend by yourself? Alone time is an integral part of every relationship. Both you and your significant other should encourage one another to spend time with friends (without your other half present) and do things you enjoy by yourself. There can be a desire to do everything together during the honeymoon phase, but this isn't a good idea. Doing things alone from time to time helps you stay in touch with the person you were before you became part of a couple. It can be easy to let this vital part of self-care fall to the wayside. When you don't do anything by yourself, your significant other often feels the pressure of being your sole source of happiness, and this isn't fair. Continuing to participate in hobbies you enjoyed solo (and encouraging them to do the same) is a great way to keep things fresh in your relationship. After a day apart, it can be fun to get together for dinner or breakfast the next morning to talk about the fun you had on your own.
Sign #5: You Try To Share Responsibilities Equally
It's normal for your significant other to vent to you after a long day at work, but it can be a considerable burden to bear when you're a constant sounding board. It's crucial that you and your significant other are both there for one another during tough times. If you listen to them and give them advice when they're stressed, they should do the same for you. If the load feels unequal, it's a problem. If you both listen to each other actively, providing potential solutions to problems and making sure the other person feels heard, you're on the right track.
If you live together, carrying an equal load can be necessary at home, too. This is one of the areas of couple-dom that can cause the most stress, especially since it often goes undiscussed. Decide who is responsible for what, and hold up your end of the bargain. If you and your partner put in equal time to work outside the home, you should also put in equal work inside the home. If you feel like you have the right balance of work at home, you're more likely to be happy together for the long haul.
Sign #6: You Trust Each Other
Think about it- how do you feel when your significant other spends an evening with friends? If you feel like you can relax, spend some time alone (or with your friends) and catch up with them the next day, it's a good sign. Do you feel the need to go through your significant other's phone, or look through their things when they're not around? Alternatively, do they do these things to you? If so, trust is lacking, and that's a red flag.
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