Core Foundation of Healthy Relationships

The Core Foundation Of Any Healthy Relationship

In order to grow together, instead of growing a part, there needs to be a solid foundation build on trust, respect, and equality.

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Over the summer, I had the opportunity to decompress and reflect on a previous romantic relationship of mine, which ended the second week of June. We had been together going on a year, however, towards the end of the relationship, I began to realize how truly toxic he was for me and my loved ones.

It began to feel extremely complicated because he had taken on such a large role in my life. If we weren't spending time together, he was texting me, calling me, wanting me to go online and play “World of Worldcraft" with him, when he wasn't working or I was in class.

Now, when I think about these behaviors, I can recognize how toxic they are. When your significant other says that "You are their whole world," that should not be taken as a compliment. For any healthy relationship, it is crucial for both people to have their own interests and identity, otherwise, it can be extremely taxing and draining for their partner.

I had become so lost in the relationship that I was sacrificing my own interests, passions, values, just to accommodate his.

One of the pivotal moments for me in deciding to break up with him was reading an article on my Facebook newsfeed. The article was something about the "12 signs you'll stay together forever" or something to that extent. Most of them applied to the relationship between me and my ex, with statements like "you can tell them anything" or "you have fun doing nothing together." A lot of these statements were sweet and endearing, applying to the relationship, all except for three core items, which I now deem the most important.

These include mutual trust, mutual respect, and, last but not least, an equal power dynamic between both partners in the relationship.

Without those core principles, all the other endearing and sweet ones, lose their importance, their genuine value, and fall away. These principles apply to any relationship, platonic or romantic, with your significant partner, your family members, your friends, to be healthy and happy, there needs to be trust, respect, and equal power dynamics.

Without a solid foundation, it is challenging for everyone to move forward in the relationship, the consequence of growing apart becoming more of a reality than growing together.

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Why You Should Stop Chasing Him

You deserve better.
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They say “the thrill of the chase" makes someone more enticing. There's just something about wanting something you can't have that drives you crazy (in a good way). There is never a dull moment. Pursuing him is a challenge. Nothing comes easily. What's the fun in that anyway?

I'm going to tell you this: stop chasing him. Stop forgiving him when he forgets to answer your text messages and phone calls. Stop being the one to always make plans. Stop letting him bail on you. Stop waiting around for him. Stop being lied to. Stop making excuses when he doesn't make time for you. There is a difference between someone who is “hard to get" and a flat out jerk who doesn't give you the time of day. Stop letting him use you.

You deserve to be with someone who makes you fall asleep every night in the middle of texting him because neither of you want the conversation to end. You deserve someone who plans dates for the two of you. You deserve someone who asks you to hang out before midnight. You deserve someone who wants to spend time with you just as much as you do with them. You deserve someone who insists on paying for your ice cream. You deserve someone who won't deceive you. You deserve someone who is straightforward. You deserve attention. You deserve affection. You deserve a partnership that is mutual, not one-sided. You deserve to be chased.

You are better than 3 a.m. “Hey" texts. You are better than a night spent watching a movie just to fool around. You are better than trying to decode his vague messages. You are better than his shadiness. You are better than mind games. You are better than being ignored.

If you have to chase him, he's not worth it. Don't settle for someone who makes you beg for his attention. If he is genuinely interested in getting to know you, he will put in the effort. A relationship where your feelings are reciprocated is far more rewarding than one where you constantly feel like you have to drag him along.

Change your mentality. Become more independent. Be confident, be bold. Find happiness in being alone. Don't waste your time pathetically chasing after someone who doesn't feel the same, but doesn't have the heart or the courage to tell you so. Your self-confidence and positivity will make you radiant, and eventually, you will attract the kind of guy who is mature enough to not mess with your head.

Cover Image Credit: weheartit.com

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How To Know

Sometimes it's hard to know what you're feeling when it comes to relationships, these tips might help

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Let's be honest. Most of us swiping left and right on Tinder aren't looking to find our soulmate.

When you're on an app determining who stays and goes based on their appearance, it's hard to argue that you're giving someone the opportunity to get to know you for more than what you have underneath your t-shirt and jeans.

Not to say some aren't there to find a genuine connection or friendship. From its reputation though, it's not the most common end game.

Let's say you're swiping leads you to someone though. You find them attractive and next thing you know you're meeting up and you're naked. Am I judging? Of course not, I wouldn't have any room to anyway.

You leave their place feeling satisfied (hopefully), without any real expectation of anything coming from this brief late night encounter. Next thing you know, you find yourself at their place again and this becomes a routine.

Late nights meeting up and exploring each other, maybe "watching" a movie before.

Then you find yourselves talking one night. What about? It could be anything really. How many pets you had growing up, what your favorite color or food is.

Whatever it is, you're learning something more than just what makes them moan.

This might lead to you wanting to know more about them and next thing you know, you've caught feelings.

This limbo of friends with benefits can last for weeks, if not months and it may be hard to know how any of this makes you feel.

When you go beyond just having sex, but actively invest the time in getting to know each other, it complicates things for better or worse.

Having sex be the first thing you do in a relationship with any new stranger you meet can make it hard to figure out what feelings are there, but if you find yourself catching feelings and you're having a hard time discerning if the other person is feeling a similar way, there are some signs you can look for to help.

If you or the other person do these things, you might have caught feelings...

  1. When you care what they think
    1. If you're having sex with someone and leave without any worry of what they might be thinking about you once that door closes, then you just might be having a thriving no strings attached sex life. But if you're leaving wondering what they're thinking about, what just went down and the talk you two had before or after, you might be a little more invested than you think.
  2. When you find yourself feeling jealous
    1. Jealousy is a dangerous feeling that we all feel at some point, it's inevitable. If you find yourself jealous when you see him with another girl on his Snapchat story or if you bring up a date you have with this guy Thursday and he falls silent, he might be feeling a little jealous. In both situations it's not a healthy response and maybe you even recognize that. You shouldn't get jealous or upset about him spending time with other girls if you guys are only friends with benefits. This is a possessive jealousy that is reserved for girlfriends or boyfriends, yet here you are. This might be a sign that you care a little more then you let on.
  3. When you find yourself getting excited to talk to them and the physical aspect is on the back burner
    1. If you find yourself wanting to tell them about something interesting that happened to you, you want to know how their day was and you find yourself content just cuddling and talking rather then just getting there and doing it, you might have caught some feels. When the physical aspect isn't the first thing you're worried about bringing you pleasure but find yourself content and satisfied with a conversation (and maybe sex after), this could be a sign.

These signs are based off my opinion and own personal experience, but they just might hold some truth to them.

Whatever the situation, if you find yourself feeling conflicted and not knowing where you stand and that bothers you, talk about it with that person. It's important not to put your feelings on the back burner.

Whatever you're feeling is justified and deserves the time and attention to be discussed.

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