While we at PeekABoo PrettyGirl place a huge emphasis on self-respect and self-confidence (notice the self being the most important part), that should always extend itself to your other relationships. Any romantic relationship you have should always be as important of a priority respect wise as your relationship with yourself. A good formula for a healthy relationship usually means 5 things:
- Both you and your partner respect each other as much as you respect yourselves. You wouldn’t lie, cheat, or hurt yourself, would you?! You should not be doing this to anyone else. Similarly, if your partner is showing signs of not caring about your emotional well-being or the well-being of the relationship, it may be time to reevaluate the situation.
- You and your partner should be slow to anger with each other. If either of you is quick to raise a temper with the other, especially regularly, it may not be the best time in your lives to be together.
- On a different end of the spectrum, say you two aren’t arguing constantly, but you’re also not growing together, that could be a HUGE problem. Anyone that you plan on being with long term should be helping you grow not only as a person, but also mentally and spiritually. If you’re in a great relationship with a stagnant person (or vice versa), you’re not really in a great relationship.
- If you’re in a relationship with the intentions on being together long term, you should probably discuss your future plans. While it may seem ridiculous as a junior in high school or even college to discuss where you’ll want to eventually live and your career goals, it will be essential in the long run. If your partner wants a career that will require them to work in rural Alabama but you are aiming for something that can only thrive in New York or LA, that is something you’ll want to know about sooner than later.
- And also importantly, does the person your with plan on raising a family in a similar manner you do? Again, that’s not always important for younger couples (not yet, anyway), but if your relationship lasts through college and afterward, you should probably know before your engaged if your partner has no intentions on raising their own children and wants to ship them off to boarding school if you planned on having a more hands-on family. Extreme example, but trust us. This will be something you’ll wish you thought of before arguing about it later. This also goes for religious practices. You should always discuss how you’ll want your future family to practice their faith.
If the person you’re with is able to easily mesh with you on all of these topics – if you’re able to mutually respect each other, avoid arguments, grow together, not worry about any major life sacrifices, and have the same family goals – you have a great start to what could potentially be a lifetime together!
-Raven Jahän Joyner, President of PABPG Inc.