Relationships are a part of life, and they can be a wonderful part of life when they are happy and healthy.
Unfortunately, the truth is that some of us do not actually know what a healthy relationship looks like because we’ve never been in one: Our relationships have been dysfunctional, overwhelming, overbearing, and—for the most part—failures.
So, for those who have never had the opportunity to be a part of a healthy relationship, you may find yourselves wondering just what does a healthy relationship look like? What are the signs that you are in a happy, healthy, and thriving relationship?
Although there are endless signs that are indicative of a happy and healthy relationship, here are just a few to get you started.
You Trust Your Partner
The fact is that many people develop trust issues because of toxic past relationships. Perhaps your past partner cheated on you, was sending flirtatious texts to one of their coworkers, lied to you about their whereabouts, or overexaggerated their affection toward you.
These types of actions are damaging, to say the least, and can leave the other partner feeling hurt, confused, and sometimes even embarrassed that they ever even trusted that person in the first place.
However, when you finally find yourself in a comfortable relationship where you feel that you can absolutely trust your partner and there is not a doubt in your mind that they are sneaking around behind your back or being unfaithful, then you are in a healthy relationship.
In this case, J.R. Incer’s wise words from “Mastering Success: The Key to Self-Empowerment and Higher Consciousness” ring true: “Honesty is the key to trust; trust is the door to healthy relationships.”
You Can Be Yourself with Your Partner
Authenticity is so important when it comes to intimate relationships: Do you really want to be in a relationship with someone who doesn’t allow you to be who you are, or that you feel the need to tone down certain parts of your personality for?
No, because then you’re not really honoring your authentic self, are you?
You’ve probably had this experience before: You enter a new relationship and you’re initially afraid or nervous to show your partner certain sides of your personality or share details of your past.
You’re afraid of being judged by them.
Now, this feeling is quite typical in new relationships. After a few months, though, that fear should start to dissipate as long as you’re in a healthy relationship.
If you are in a new relationship for more than a few months and you still do not feel that you can share all of yourself with your partner, then you may not be with the right person. It is important that you do not simply jump to this conclusion, though. If you are feeling this way, sit down with your partner and talk to them about it.
You Can Communicate Effectively with Your Partner
Effectively communicating with your partner can be difficult even in a healthy relationship but—as Bronnie Ware says—“…to be in any sort of relationship where you do not express yourself, simply to keep the peace, is a relationship ruled by one person and will never be balanced or healthy.” In other words, if you are not communicating effectively with your partner, your relationship is basically doomed!
Communication in an unhealthy relationship might look something like this: You and your partner ignore any problems and, instead, choose to repress them; you and your partner argue and walk away from one another without resolving the issue; or communication is completely absent.
Although communicating is still difficult while in a healthy relationship, the outcomes are generally better. For instance, you might have a little tiff with your partner about whose responsibility it is to take out the garbage on a weekly basis or do the dishes. Instead of just letting the issue simmer within, you and your partner sit down and resolve the issue together.
This type of communication—though seemingly insignificant—will strengthen your relationship.
You Give Your Partner Space, and Vice Versa
There is nothing worse than having a clingy partner or a partner who just does not want to spend time with you, and both are indicators of an unhealthy relationship. How are you supposed to determine if you really care for your partner if you never have the chance to miss them because they are always around or—the opposite—you barely know them because you spend so little time together?
When you are in a healthy relationship, you will find that there is a nice balance of spending time with your partner and spending time apart. It may be beneficial for you and your partner to keep some separate friends and take up different hobbies to maintain independence.
This way, you will really appreciate the time that you get to spend together!
You and Your Partner are Affectionate Toward One Another
How often do you and your partner touch each other and tell each other that you care for one another?
If this sounds like an incredibly personal question, that’s because it is.
In an unhealthy relationship, affection may be disguised as sex, but sex is not the only way to show your partner affection. And if sex is the only way that you are showing your partner affection, then perhaps you are just infatuated with them and not entirely in love with them.
Sex is still present in a healthy relationship—obviously—but affection is often expressed in other ways, as well. You might hold your partner’s hand while you’re watching a movie; you might give them a kiss on the cheek; you might try your hardest to make them laugh when they’re having a bad day; or you might even just tell them how much you enjoy being with them and why you enjoy being with them.
You can’t really have a healthy relationship without affection and care at the core, can you?
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