If you're in a relationship where you feel like something is missing, but you can't quite put your finger on it, you're probably not alone. While it's true many of us eventually find our perfect relationship fit for life, we all inevitably go through several duds before we get there.
Unfortunately, sometimes, we misread the signs and think one of those duds is actually "the one." And then, we later find that they were just "the one for now."
The thing is, in a healthy, loving relationship that is meant to last forever, there are some pretty important ingredients that contribute to making the relationship last. If your relationship is missing any of these eight things, though, there's a good chance the person you're with isn't your forever person.
It goes without saying that trust is one of the most important aspects in a relationship, so if you feel like you can't trust your partner, it's doubtful that your relationship will last forever.
In my experience, trust doesn't just mean you trust them not to cheat. It means you trust them to be there when you need them. It means you trust them to be a good person all on their own. It means you trust them to let you help them when the going gets rough (among other things).
Trust is critical if you want your relationship to continue on in the future. But if you don't have it, you probably won't be able to make things last forever.
Respect is a word that gets thrown around a lot when it comes to political figures and world leaders, but what about in the context of a relationship?
Well, in the right relationship, you and your partner should feel a ton of respect for each other. You should admire them for who they are, not just what they bring to your life. You should be happy to know them, not just to be in a couple with them.
When you truly respect someone, you are just happy that they exist. If you don't respect your partner or they don't respect you, your relationship is unlikely to last.
This one isn't new. We all know that a healthy relationship needs communication.
My husband and I are constantly talking about everything under the sun. We talk about us, we talk about life, we talk about our feelings, we talk about the weather. What's really interesting about communicating in a relationship is that, sometimes, you don't know there is a bigger issue that needs to be discussed until you start talking about the smaller ones and let the conversation flow.
If you and your partner don't talk openly and honestly — about everything — with each other or you don't feel like you can, you might want to let them go and find a better fit.
Long-term relationships are comfortable and often feel great. That said, though, they also need more than comfort to survive over the long haul: They need continued adventure.
Adventure doesn't have to mean big, fancy trips or jumping out of planes. Adventure can simply mean keeping up the sense of excitement you feel to wake up with your partner and spend the day with them. It can mean the exhilaration you feel at the prospect of a life together.
My husband and I find adventure in everything we do, whether it's a trip to Whole Foods or a trip to Puerto Rico. And we're a stronger couple for it. If you don't feel any sense of adventure in your relationship, it may not be the one for you forever.
One of the best, most unexpected things I found out about my husband is the incredible sense of peace he gives me. I've never before been in a relationship where I've felt so calm and at ease all of the time.
Sometimes, we get in a relationship pattern of fight, make up, fight, make up. And it's terrible because we start to think this is what relationships are supposed to be like. But they're not. The right relationships are supposed to fill you with an overwhelming sense of content and peace.
If you don't feel peace in your relationship (and conversely, if your partner makes you feel stressed), then you should assess whether you want to keep going with them, because it's probably not the right relationship for you.
Just like the incredible sense of peace I get from my husband, I never thought I would also feel overwhelmed that another human accepted every part of me.
In the best, strongest couples, acceptance doesn't require a conversation — it's a given. Your partner should make you feel like every single part of you is awesome. They should even help you like the parts of you that you haven't liked in the past. If your current significant other doesn't make you feel completely accepted all the time, then it's likely your relationship won't last.
In a forever partnership, your SO should support you freely, openly, and as much as is needed.
I'm traditionally kind of a bouncer. I bounce from thing to thing, idea to idea. I have a hard time sitting still with one task at a time. My husband, though, supports me no matter what. He tells me he'll be there for me whether I decide to go to med school or whether I decide to move to Costa Rica and live in the jungle.
If you don't feel supported in the things that you do, you may want to look for a new partner, because the one you're with won't be the one you end up with.
Of course, this one may seem like a no-brainer, but for a true, forever partnership to work out, it obviously has to be filled with love.
My husband reminds me every minute of every day that he loves me, whether it's just by doing an everyday task, like taking our pup out, or by doing something super romantic, like rubbing my feet and making me a face mask. (Seriously, he makes me face masks from scratch at home.)
Your partnership with your forever person should make you feel loved and in love constantly. Of course, all relationships have ups and downs, but the love you feel should always be there, and it should grow over time. And if you don't feel that way, then this person may not be right for you.
Relationships are complicated, but what's not complicated? If these important characteristics are missing from your relationship, then it's not likely to last in the long run.
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