When it comes to love and relationships, few things are guaranteed. This is especially true early on, when you're looking for that someone special. As time goes on and you develop a partnership with a person, there still isn't an exact science to understanding your future. There are some basic qualities of a loving, trusting relationship that can suggest you have a future with this person. Amongst the signs that
a relationship is going to last is a strong sense of trust, respect, support, and appreciation for each other that doesn't waiver, despite bumps along the road.
"Even the best relationship can have difficult times. Every relationship has serious problems, concerns and even crises," says
Joshua Klapow, Ph.D. Clinical Psychologist and Host of The Kurre and Klapow Show. "Communication is the key to keeping a relationship healthy. Talking about more than the daily tasks. Talking about the larger topics respect, honor, love, dreams, fears, concerns ." He stresses the importance of making sure that you are 'right with your partner' when it comes to how you express your love, dedication, and compromise.
The following traits are Dr. Klapow's key traits that are present in the strongest relationships.
"You should never have to ask your partner to trust you," says Dr. Klapow. For a relationship to be long-lasting, there absolutely must be trust in the relationship. According to Dr. Klapow, this isn't just about the general level of trust — this trust has to be about believing they want what's best for you, are going to treat you the way you deserve, and ultimately will be there when things are good or bad.
"Relationships are built on love and respect," says Dr. Klapow. "Your partner may occasionally engage in activities that unintentionally send a signal of disrespect (They interrupt you, try to manage your time, discount your views or opinions). However once you point this out, your partner should respond with an apology and an affirmation of their respect for you." Another key ingredient in a recipe for a lasting partnerships is respect. Respect is about having an intimate regard for someone's feelings, wishes, rights, and opinions.
You're dedicated to each other.
Dedication is super important for a relationship that is meant to last. After being together for a while, you may take the relationship for granted at times. Klapow says that this is not unusual, but dedicated partners should always be willing and capable of re-centering their partnership.
"In healthy relationships there is a general sense of 'I like this person.' Not every moment, but most every day. A feeling of attachment, closeness, and general good will towards your partner. If that is there the relationship will last," says Dr. Klapow. Admiration encompasses having an appreciation for your partner's thoughts, work, and personality. You can always do creative things to show your admiration for your partner, such as surprising them or showing up when it counts.
Simple ways of showing your admiration of your partner could include leaving them a love note for them to find in the morning or taking them out to do something that aligns with their interests. It can also be as simple as telling them the things that you think are great about them. A little can go a long way.
You influence each other.
"You each let each other influence you," says Dr. Klapow. "As much as individuality is important, allowing your partner to be a true partner and have an influence on at least some of the decisions you make in your life is critical. This willingness to allow them to influence your thinking and actions is what keeps you closer and strengthens your bond."
He stresses that in a relationship, there becomes three entities to care for: You, your partner, and the relationship itself. Having a great sense of independence is important, but so is allowing your partnership to develop its own unique qualities with influences from both of you.
"Willingness to support individual growth. Dedication to the relationship is important but support and willingness to see your partner grow, change and mature is critical. We all bring our own individual trajectory to a relationship and willingness to support that is a sign of relationship health," says Dr. Klapow. Relationships that are going to last mean that you both have to adjust to the changes you will inevitably face over time. There will be things you will experience as a couple that you have to work through together and being willing to grow together will make your relationship feel like an exciting journey.
Being in a relationship that checks all of these boxes can be an incredible experience. If you're not sure every aspect that Dr. Klapow suggested is fully present in your relationship just yet, you can totally work towards them as goals. Being in a long-term relationship is like growing a garden — your care should be daily and mistakes are acceptable. Hopefully, something amazing is about to bloom for you.