In the age of polyamory and Tinder, who can tell us what a perfect match is? Our emotional references are increasingly varied and elusive and, fortunately, the individual factor, the personal pursuit of dreams, is now much more important than the prospect of unquestioningly throwing ourselves into the marriage-home-children formula. Nevertheless, love still exists, as do chemistry, physical contact and commitment, but how can we value them and at the same time dispense with the unhealthy romantic education that has been handed down to us for centuries?.
- He accepts you just as you are and doesn’t want to change you.
“Expectations exist in everything in life and in love relationships even more so. We all have a preconceived idea of what we are supposed to like, desire or love. That’s why having a partner accept you in your entirety, knowing that there is no one perfect, welcomes us and above all makes us feel at ease as a couple. How can I like so-and-so so much when he is so short? Because we love that person with all that he or she is for us and with us”.
“That the partner accepts you as you are is fundamental. It is true that at the beginning of a relationship there is a process of adapting to each other, in which you have to give in on some aspects so that the two people, individual beings, with different families, relationships and previous experiences, fit together and work well”
- Fits in with your people and your environment (or wants to).
“Something very nice and that makes us feel love for our partner is when we perceive that effort to try to please the people we love, or treat our friends well. It is certainly a very positive point, because our environment is an extension of ourselves”.
“People’s social life is very important, as well as the fact that your partner fits in with your friends and family, because otherwise there will be a fracture, and the reality is that this support is necessary. There will always be people we like more or less, but we return to the point of balance: a relationship will generate changes, in the social sphere too, but they should be as few as possible, as we each need our own environment”.
- Listens to you and is interested in you
“I find it very difficult to conceive of a couple not maintaining fluid communication. We all like to be listened to and welcomed when we are telling something. Not only to listen, but to validate our uncertainty, share our successes and support our low moments. If this is not the case, what do we expect from a partner?
“Having good communication and feeling understood, supported and listened to is one of the most important points when it comes to creating the necessary bond in a lasting relationship. At the end of the day, he or she is your travelling companion”.
- Respect your independence
“You always have to individualise, every couple is different and works in a certain way. I know couples who set aside a weekend for each of them to do an activity outside the couple and others who don’t even conceive of this idea. Once again, it is a matter of putting on the table what makes us happy and sharing it with each other. It is a question of honesty and of feeling valued and secure.
“It is essential so that emotional dependencies are not generated. Many relationships begin in a very intense way and they put aside their life, their friends, their hobbies, and the loved one starts to become the main objective. This, over time, diminishes our points of support, our self-esteem and our personal security”.
- Knows how to comfort you when you are sad (or give you space).
“There are people who want their partner to spend as much time as possible with them and share everything with them. Others, being like that, when they are in a bad mood, prefer a certain amount of independence. In this sense, I don’t think there are good or bad behaviours, but rather people with different needs (and partners with different needs), which should be shown so that the other person knows how to help us more”.
“It is always healthier to share pain, no matter how introverted we are. You have to respect each other’s way of processing it on a personal level, encourage good communication and a good expression of emotions for both of you. Making fun of each other’s feelings because you don’t empathise with them generates a very important fracture”.
- Encourages you to do what you like and does not compete with you.
“You have to see the couple as a team, and I think it is a mistake to compete in this sense. We should not feel insecure because our partner earns more than us or has a position of great importance. We are part of it and without our support it would not be possible. In the end, our partner listens to us, knows us and supports us more than anyone else, and that’s the way it should be.
“Feeling motivated by your partner to pursue hobbies, hobbies, to achieve goals and dreams, and that he or she even accompanies you in this, is a great indicator of success in a relationship. This also implies giving in sometimes, trying to empathise and put yourself in the other person’s shoes to see what they may need and what you can contribute”.
- You want a future project (even if it is immediate).
“Nowadays there are a thousand types of couples and this evolution is changing. What used to be something like courtship, home, marriage and child, has now changed, fortunately, and each one develops a plan that makes them happy. It could be having a pet together, travelling the world or watching Netflix series until death do us part. This is precious as long as it is shared because it means we are in sync”.
“According to experts, a lasting relationship has three vertices: passion, physical contact and commitment. Commitment is the project of a common future, that we both row in the same direction, that we have illusions and goals to achieve. It is key when the surprise factor disappears in a couple”.
- This one is for you: let yourself be loved and want to be loved
“Our intuition is very important and forms part of that magical something that tells us that yes, this person is for us and we are for them, with everything and in spite of everything. Because we are much more than a sum of small parts or a weird puzzle. We are two-way love when we are a couple. Towards the other, but also towards ourselves”.
“In a relationship it is key to empathise with the other and try not to think only of oneself. For a couple to be long-lasting, sincere and authentic, I must also want to see the other person enjoy and make them happy. Over time we get comfortable and lose that component, but it is a very important exercise that we should all work on, especially when relationships are getting older”.