Going through Twitter and found a thread of questions. One asked what was your top 3 things things in order to have an healthy relationship... That got me thinking.
What could that possibly be? I feel like I only have a romanticized perspective on relationships. Always looking at couples and getting upset because that would be so easily solved and I'm suddenly angry because they're pouring a whole storm on a tiny cup of glass. Yes, you can say I don't understand the complexity of love and the difficulties a relationship can bring, you're most likely right.
I tried to think a bit and thought: communication, respect, and effort. But also thought: wow, you're answer is really that lame isn't it. And also, those three can be so easily interconnected, which just enforced my perspective of how little I actually understand on this subject.
How are those three so interconnected, I ask myself?
Communication is mentioned a lot, and sometimes people are just so over hearing about it... So much it can now be so cliche. I, with my little knowing and my outsider perspective, think it's one of the most important things. And it's not like "oh but we talk all the time", that's not what this is about. It's about having an issue, no matter how big or small, and being able to say: hey, are you aware of this?; what caused this?; how can we work on it?. There's a lot of trust involved for this, openness that allows you to talk through everything and anything, even the most fragile points in the middle of two people.
Respect is essential, of course. Respect their opinions, difficulties, space, differences, and all other things this list can include. And communication really is connected to this — see why my answer is lame — because that's how you establish boundaries, that's how you make things clear for each other. It's not about establishing limits in your relationship, it's just there are better days than others. Like days where you need your own space, to be in your corner, and that's okay. Let them know. And when they go through it and let you know, then it all comes to respect that it is what they need right now.
Effort comes along all of that. Effort can mean being reciprocate. And effort also means balancing the scale when the other side cannot do it's full part. Effort to understand what's going on and respect. To hear more than judge. And just like there's days you need space, there are days you can't pour so much onto your relationship. Remember this ain't a competition. If you can only give 10% let them give 90%. And if the opposite happens, just pour those 90 for them. If you talk things through I don't think that would be an issue. What's affecting you? They already know! Maybe even better than yourself. And if things are that well balanced, it's because there's a lot of respect between as well.
I actually went through some of the replies to that. Communication and trust seemed to be the most mentioned. Also honesty, loyalty, respect... Even love, affection, intimacy. And as I was trying to understand why I said what I said and why it felt so connected now everything feels connected.
I don't think you should be in a relationship with no love. And if it is the love that went away somewhere in the middle of it, where you even putting out your effort? And affection, to demonstrate your love for someone, that is so important. Trust, honesty, friendship, respect, loyalty, even communication, and so much more... Would you commit do someone you don't trust? Who has no shoulder for you when you need to cry? I feel like talking through all things can be very helpful. "Even the strongest blizzards start with a single snowflake". There's always tough times and challenges to face, but keeping things clear between the two of you might be a major help, might prevent big mistakes and ease finding solutions for your difficulties together. At least, I would like to believe so.
And one more thing... You're still living exclusively for you. No matter how long your relation lasts, you're still the main focus in your life. Like they are in theirs. Because being together is not two people who are one — even for me, that's romanticising a little too much —, it is about walking your path side by side with someone else, going in the same direction, slowing down when they're lacking strength and holding their hand to pick you up when you're on the ground.
Respect other's path as it was yours. Use all words possible with the person next to you to take care of your relation, from beginning to end. And if it ever comes a day where your roads come different ways, read this paragraph from the start once again.