Wondering whether or not to commit? Here are some points to consider before you do. Answering these questions will help you make a better decision:
1) Is he/she willing to deal with problems? When everything is going great guns, it’s easy to be in love and think that you are compatible. But what happens when challenges arise? Is your prospective partner willing to directly deal with the challenge? Or do they refuse to talk about it in order to come to an understanding, even if it’s agree to disagree? Can he/she listen to your point of view with the intent to understand? Or is it simply their way or the highway? Is he/she flexible enough to compromise when you don’t see eye to eye? Are they willing to admit when they’re wrong?
2) Do they accept differences? It’s great and necessary to share many things, but being with your clone makes for a boring relationship. Having differences is a healthy thing. It keeps things interesting. Someone who professes to like everything you do is probably lying to you, or to him/herself, and will be filled with resentment if they don’t feel comfortable enough to truly be who they are.
3) Does he/she have a life outside of your relationship? If either of you makes the relationship all there is, it’s not going to work. No one person can totally fulfill another. We all need friends, activities, etc., that stimulate us, and if he/she gives that up, or has never cultivated it, there will inevitably be problems.
4) What is their past relationship history? Not that you need to know every gory detail about their past, but you do need to know if this person has grown from the inevitable mistakes, or keeps repeating past destructive patterns. You want someone who is willing to look at him/herself and grow with you. Neither of you is perfect and perfection is not what you look for in a partner. Instead seek out someone who is willing to grow with you. Self-awareness is a huge part of having a successful relationship.
5) Intimacy requires vulnerability. Is he/she willing to show up and be seen? Or is it like pulling teeth to find out what’s inside–how they’re thinking or feeling, what makes them tick. Vulnerability is extremely important to a satisfying relationship.
6) Last, but hardly least, is having a sense of humor. Are they able to laugh at them-self? Or do they take life and them-self so seriously that there’s no fun to be had. Laughing, playing, having fun with each other makes the difference between a dull, boring relationship and one that sparkles. How much laughter and fun is in your relationship?
Blindly committing before you really know a person is a sure-fire path to heartache. Why not take the time to really get to know someone before you take the plunge? The rewards will make you glad that you did.
For related information see: Is it time to move on?
Check out my book, The Affair: From Breakdown to Breakthrough, A Therapist’s Real-life Journey, for more great tips and insights about relationships. You can buy it worldwide on Kindle from all Amazon websites.