Sometimes we wish we had a magic lamp to answer our questions and tell us if the person we love is really “the one”. To shed some light on your situation, here – according to an expert – are four questions to ask yourself to find out if your relationship is likely to last.
What if there was a magic formula for making your relationship last?
At least, that’s what Dr Kathy Nickerson, a psychologist specialising in relationships, argues. According to her, there are “4 signs to look out for” to know whether your relationship will last in the long term.
For The Independent, she details how an “easy” relationship, healthy arguments, caring for each other and kindness as a couple are fundamental pillars of a relationship to work and last.
A simple and ‘easy’ relationship
First of all, Dr Kathy Nickerson points to the need for an “easy” relationship: “What I mean by that is that it doesn’t feel like a daily struggle or challenge to connect with or get emotional support from your partner,” she says.
Although all couples experience crises, the relationship can quickly become toxic: “even though life can be difficult and you may face personal challenges, your relationship should be secure and comfortable”, she reminds us.
Arguing to communicate
Arguments can be life-saving for a couple, but the fight must be “fair” and lead to discussion, reveals Dr Kathy Nickerson: “Couples in healthy relationships know that the purpose of conflict is to communicate, not to destroy each other.”
So, paying attention to how you express your feelings, while continually caring about your partner even in a time of crisis, seems to be a factor in a couple’s durability: “The goal of good communication is to be honest, authentic and kind – not mean, critical, defensive or dismissive.
Caring about each other’s happiness
“Caring about your partner’s happiness is vital,” explains the relationship expert. Taking care of, cultivating and cherishing your partner’s happiness – without forgetting or putting yourself aside – guarantees a long-lasting and happy love. Indeed, “we feel closer to people who love us, who actively take care of us and who bend over backwards for us”.
But this attention has to be shared equally. “The strongest couples advocate fairness in their relationship, particularly when it comes to household chores and choices made for the family.
Be gentle and kind to each other
Are you going through a difficult period in your relationship? Try, despite everything, to remain a “haven” for each other. Couples who last over time “do everything they can to make their partner feel safe, valued and loved”, even in the face of adversity. Even in the face of adversity.
A study carried out by the University of Göttingen in 2019 revealed that almost 90% of women thought that kindness was the most important character trait in their future long-term partner.
If you tick all the boxes above, it would seem that your relationship is built to last. If not, “it’s never too late to improve a relationship”, says Kathy Nickerson.
But if these four points seem difficult, or even impossible, to establish in your relationship, the most important thing remains concern for the other person’s happiness. Indeed, “if your partner’s happiness really matters to you, you will naturally do many things that convey acceptance and admiration, as each relationship is unique”, concludes the expert.
This article was syndicated from Marie Claire Belgium (French)