If you were asked to define the “perfect” relationship, where and how would you begin? To be sure, each person’s definition would be different. To be sure, there is no one right definition of “perfect” and this may change during the course of your relationship and life. Here are a few key areas to consider as you create your personal definition:
- Consider reliability and caring. Do you feel that wherever you are and whatever the time, your partner will make every effort to be by your side when you call? To support and help and offer a shoulder to lean on or a hand to hold – through good and bad times?
- Consider the degree to which each of you is willing to compromise and negotiate to meet each other’s needs. So, if you regularly give and take and show flexibility, then each will feel their needs are important and being acknowledged.
- Consider the degree of ease you feel at being totally yourself in your partner’s presence. If you feel that you have to perform to meet expectations, this may be an exhausting and difficult task to keep up with.
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- Consider physical and sexual compatibility. Do you expect to always feel excitement at the thought of being with your partner or are you anticipating that butterflies may dissipate over time? Do you find your partner physically attractive – not necessarily because he or she is the most beautiful or handsome person in the world, but because beauty is in the eye of the beholder (and it doesn’t matter what others think!)? And keep in mind that physical attractiveness is partly related to liking a person from the inside out.
- Consider religious or cultural similarities or sameness. Is it important to you that your partner share the same values and upbringing as you? Are you able to assimilate or find common ground? Does it matter how accepted your partner is by your extended family?
- Consider other values and beliefs. Do you share the same beliefs about extended family? Having children? Do you care about your partner’s character – their honesty, integrity, level of responsibility, for example, and how closely aligned their beliefs are with yours?
- Consider social sameness – do you both enjoy the company of others or does one of you prefer to stay at home alone? Does this matter to you?
- Consider what you share in common – do you share a similar lifestyle? Do both of you prefer to be active rather than sedentary? Do you both enjoy culture and the arts? Does one of you love walking through museums while the other can think of nothing worse? Is this okay for both of you? Can you balance what you share in common versus what you prefer to do on your own?
- Consider how compatible you are as “roommates” – do you both prefer to wash the dishes before you go to bed at night or does one of you not care how many are piled high over days? Before saying “I do” it’s often a good idea to live together to see how compatible you are and whether you can work through the incompatibilities.
If you take all of the above into account (as well as other areas that may be personal to you), you may more easily be able to define your personal package of perfection. This, then, may be something you aspire towards as you seek out, date or consider marriage with your partner.