Relationship Advice

If Your Relationship Is Missing One Of These Three Ingredients, It Won't Work Out

Long-lasting love is hard to find, but if you have friendship, infatuation, and attraction, your love will stand the test of time.


Recently, I've been thinking a ton about love. How do I tell if it's true love? How do I know if I am in love? How many different types of love are there? Just love, love, love; everything love is on my mind. I don't necessarily have a reason why beyond the fact that I'm a human who loves romanticizing, but I thought I came up with some interesting conclusions, so I decided to share my answers to all of these questions that I was asking myself.

While I have not been in a relationship once in my life, I have seen many of those around me in them. Taking what I know from those relationships, both intelligently and empathetically, I came to the realization that a relationship needs three things to work: friendship, attraction, and infatuation. If the relationship is missing at least one of the three, it won't work out no matter how hard you try. Below this text is the diagram I made to help explain what I mean, so feel free to refer to it! First, let me define and explain each aspect in correlation to relationships.

Katherine Sheetz

Friendship is mutual companionship, someone you can trust with your life, mutual respect, loyalty, and mutual trust. For me, it's that person you can call at 3 am to spill the tea, someone who can tell you're not okay no matter how many times you say that you are, and someone who has seen and/or knows the worst of you but loves you despite it all.

Attraction is being drawn to someone for their physical traits and/or their character traits. It's getting flustered at the sight of them, feeling the elephant stampede raging on in your stomach, and getting that airy feeling around them. Attraction can also be referred to as a connection, a bond, or chemistry. Basically, it's that initial spark of love/electricity you feel when you see them.

Infatuation is an intense admiration for someone, whether that be pertaining to their physical attributes or their personality. Personally, I view infatuation on more of a personal level than a physical level. It's being so unbelievably grateful for who they are as a person. Additionally, it's loving the idea of them (specifically the idea of being in a relationship with them).

When all three of these work together, you have true love that will stand the test of time. If you don't then the relationship most likely will not work out. And yes, I understand that it may be hard to take my advice since I haven't been in a relationship before, but I think you'd be surprised what you'll learn about your relationship if you take a look at these three aspects.

Now when it comes to knowing if you're in love, I ultimately believe that you just know it deep down in your heart and soul. However, if you're having trouble getting the answer out of yourself, I think it helps to look at/analyze the three aspects I previously talked about. Do some soul searching and heart hearing; only they know the answer.

Popular Right Now

An Open Letter To The Guy I'm Finally Getting Over

I think I'm ready to listen to the happy Taylor Swift songs again.

I remember when all of this started. I couldn't have predicted you if I'd tried. I was so focused on myself that it took me a while to even admit I was interested in you. You were the one I didn't see coming, and then before long, you were the one I couldn't imagine leaving.

I'll be honest. I lied to myself and to everyone else for a long time. “We aren't anything serious," I'd say. “I'm just having fun." How stupid was I to think that I could resist getting caught up in you? Those months that we spent together were some of the best of my life. I didn't think it was possible for someone to make me laugh like you did, to make me feel the way you did. You brought out a side of me I had never seen before, and even though that scared me, I didn't want it to stop.

You had me so fooled.

One day, just like that, you were gone, and before I knew it I couldn't even recognize myself anymore. I couldn't imagine how someone I had given so much to could just leave like that and not even look back. The months after that was a string of waking up and losing you all over again, telling my friends I was fine one second and crying to them the next. And the second I started thinking I was OK, I saw you again. We talked, I cried, I yelled, you cried, you yelled, and for a couple of weeks I pretended that everything would be OK, and you really meant it this time and we would make it. But just like before, it wasn't real.

Realizing that took me longer than I'd like to admit, but this is what I need you to know: I'm moving on. Finally, after months of dialing your number just to talk myself out of it, I can say that I'm moving on. I won't listen to sad songs anymore. I won't look at our pictures and re-live the days we spent together. I'm erasing every trace of you. I'm smiling brighter, I'm laughing louder, and if it's the last thing I do, I swear I'll find something that's better than what we had.

That's not to say that your memory won't knock the breath out of me on a Tuesday afternoon when our song comes through my headphones. That's not to say that I won't remember the promises you made me and want to scream at myself for ever believing you. But the difference is that I'll recognize the pain in those memories, and then I'll set them down and walk away. Because I'm done carrying them with me and I'm done giving you that power over me.

So don't call me up someday when I've finally forgotten your laugh, don't think about me at all if you can help it. You lost that right when you made the choices you did. This isn't some stupid love story we'll tell later down the road about how we beat the odds and came through stronger on the other side. This is done, do you understand? I'm finally done.

Years from now I'll look back on the adventures we had and laugh at how crazy we were. I'll remember the fierce happiness I felt while we were running wild together and I'll be grateful for this because it has molded me in ways I can't begin to explain. Someday I'll tell my daughter about you and pray that she learns from my mistakes, and when that day comes I'll wonder where you are and genuinely wish you the kind of happiness that I will have found.

I know you'll never read this. But I'll read this, on those nights when it feels like everything is starting to fall apart. Again and again and again, I'll read this and remind myself of the promise I'm making at this very moment, to look forward and stop letting your memory dictate my happiness. Someone wise once said, “Suddenly you'll just know, that it's time to start something new and trust the magic of beginnings." Well, I'm trusting that this was just one short chapter of my book, and this is me turning the page.

On to the next.

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

5 Red Flags That Your Crush Is Talking To Other Girls

Don't worry, your selfie game is still strong even though his Snapchat skills are marginal at best.


If you're going to "talk" to a bunch of girls, you need to do a better job at it. You players aren't really players because you have no game. Just because we go along with your sorry excuse for "talking" to us doesn't mean that we don't notice.

You're not fooling us. Even though you'd never dream of calling us on the phone, believe me, we've got your number.

I'm hoping that this list will be helpful to you if you're a girl trying to decide if your latest interest is actually interested and/or lead you to believe whether or not you are one of the many girls he's talking to. If you already know these tell-tale signs of the inner workings of impersonal technological contact then I hope you read this and laugh at how pathetic dating culture has become.

If you're a guy reading this maybe you will realize that SURPRISE! We know! Time to rethink how you run your women factory you were previously so proud of. If you are a guy reading this who doesn't do these things then go crack open a cold one and take the rest of the day off!

1. He resorts to Snapchat rather than texting

Hear me now, believe me later: Nothing good happens after 2 a.m. and very rarely do any real plans get made over Snapchat. Actual mail delivery on horseback Paul Revere-style would be more efficient (OK now I'm picturing Paul Revere singing "Old Town Road"). If they do try to make plans you might want to save the details in the chat and if you do that you look like a serial killer as well as someone who wants to show the messages to their friends (which you do want to show them, but he can never know that).

2. You slowly notice that his responses maybeeee aren't tailored to you

Oh gosh, this feels like realizing your favorite singer lip syncs. You don't want it to be true but it is. Perhaps the photo of the sports game on T.V. that he was watching wasn't only seen by you. I know, it cuts deep. Alexa, play "Womanizer."

3. You're receiving a reply that definitely wasn't meant for you

You send a selfie of you with iced coffee in the sunshine because duh, use straws to your advantage (is it just me or does my smile look especially good when I pose like that? I swear the coffee by my teeth makes them look whiter!) and he replies with a "for sure" or "yes" or "idk." You don't know about my coffee? Maybe you would know about it if you actually ever hung out with me, loser.

4. He leaves you on open and replies hours later

Most likely he did this to all his ladies. With no shock value, he conveniently replies when it is nearing evening and asks you what you're doing that night. But of course, you only get the three letters of "wyd." He left everyone on open and then sent that to everyone.

5. You receive the same snap back-to-back

This is a serious sign. If he sends you "wyd tonight" twice you know that the second one was meant for another person. He wasn't doubly curious about your plans.

Related Content

Facebook Comments