Regardless of what you may have heard or seen, no relationship is perfect. But for the most part, a good relationship should make you feel secure, content, valued, cared for, and free to be your best self. On the flip side, there are toxic relationships. Those are the ones that drain and deplete you, sometimes even leaving you too distraught to do anything sensible.
All relationships require hard work and commitment to prosper. But when it comes to unhealthy relationships, it is a lot easier to feel trapped, which can put your entire life on hold. An unhealthy relationship, whether personal or business, can be one of the worst things that you can ever experience.
Sadly, though, sometimes toxic relationships can be hard to identify, particularly when you have been in it for a long time. Some behaviors cross the line, indicating that it is time for you to do something constructive like leave or seek help. Such behaviors, such as any kind of abuse, physical, verbal, financial or emotional, are clear indicators of an unhealthy relationship.
Other signs tend to be subtler, but can just be as problematic as the apparent ones. All relationships have some level of toxicity that must be dealt with because nothing is perfect, but there is always room for improvement. So how can you tell whether your relationship is unhealthy and broken from the inside out or is just going through a healthy rough path? Here are 7 signs that you are in a healthy relationship:
You are free to speak your mind
You should be able to be completely yourself if you are in a healthy relationship. While all couples have varying degrees of candidness, you should never feel like you have to change components of yourself or your personality to fit in with your partner.
You are honest and open with one another
Honesty and openness are essential as it not only allows couples to be more connected, but it also creates room for trust to develop. Being open with your partner does not necessarily mean that you have to share every single aspect of your life with your partner.
We all need our privacy and space. What matters the most is that you and your partner feel comfortable sharing your hopes for the future, dreams, fears, and opinions. Relationships thrive when both parties can express themselves in all things including sex.
This means that no topic should be off-topic, even when it comes to introducing sex toys in the bedroom. When you are both able to speak your minds, then you can work on building a lasting life with one another.
You make joint decisions, no matter what
No single party should be calling all the shots in a healthy relationship- decisions should be made jointly no matter what. From deciding which brand of coffee to buy to how many pets you should have, every decision should be made once you have listened to each other’s concerns and wants.
If one partner assumes a dominating position, meaning that they make all the major decisions, your relationship will definitely suffer. Egalitarian relationships, where both spouses are equal, tend to be the happiest and healthiest.
Your relationship is based on trust
Trust is the foundation of every great relationship. You have to trust your partner to be in a healthy relationship, and your partner has to reciprocate as well. Without trust, your relationship will be shaky and will turn toxic before failing altogether.
Envision a relationship without any trust; your partner would leave for work and you would have no peace of mind. You would have to constantly check in on him because you would always be worried sick that they are up to something. You might want to share with your partner a secret, but find yourself unable to, because you would not be sure whether they would keep the secret or not.
According to Kate Huber at NJGamblingFun, “Without trust, every waking moment of your relationship would feel like a nightmare. An untrustworthy relationship would be too chaotic and dysfunctional to last. So if you think you are in one, then you might need to reconsider your current situation.”
You know how to let things go
The longer that you stay in a relationship, the better you get to know your partner, which can sometimes mean that you know just what to say to get on their nerve. We all fight now and then, which can cause us to act and talk in an unbefitting manner.
During those moments, it is essential to talk through your issues once all the parties have calmed down. Holding grudges after apologies have been given will only cause the relationship to deteriorate. So forgiveness is key.
There’s mutual respect
Mutual respect is vital for a couple to develop a healthy relationship. You and your partner should respect one another even if you disagree on certain matters. In instances of disagreements, you should be able to turn your grievances and differences into reasonable concessions.
When people are in healthy and close relationships, they have shared respect for each other. This means that they do not disparage one another and instead offer support and protection in all situations.
You are affectionate with one another
Healthy relationships create space for you to be affectionate with your partner. Showing affection in any way including kissing, touching, anticipating each other’s needs and knowing your partner’s love language should come easily to you both.
At the beginning of the relationship, the passion is typically at an all-time high but as the relationship progresses, it may start to dwindle. But this does not mean that your need for affection and tenderness from your partner ends. A healthy relationship is differentiated by genuine fondness and affection from both parties, which can be expressed in an array of ways.
If you feel uneasy in your relationship, you need to stop and assess your relationship to figure out whether it is healthy or not. When you are in a healthy and happy relationship, your life starts to blossom and change in amazing ways. Challenges that would be hard to deal with before start becoming a piece of cake and life is great.
In a healthy relationship, your partner becomes your support system, your pillar of strengths and partner in crime. When you start to share inside jokes and complete each other’s sentences, your match might just be made in heaven. If this sounds like your relationship, then congratulations! You’ve attained what many others struggle to achieve, which is something to thank your lucky stars for.