You don’t have to delight in everything your partner does, but you do need to respect each other. You and your significant other need to understand that you are each unique people with individual interests and needs. And even if you don’t love all the same things that your partner loves, in a healthy relationship you respect and accept your differences.
Healthy relationships are built on trust. And trust applies to fidelity, finances, parenting, and more. Trustworthy partners are predictable, faithful, and reliable.
Communication is a two-way street: You need to be able to speak your mind, and you also need to be able to hear your partner speak their mind—even when they tell you something unpleasant. Good communication helps couples express themselves, connect, and resolve conflicts in healthy ways.
The top predictor of a healthy union is feeling that your partner is committed to the relationship, according to a 2020 review of dozens of relationship studies.2 If you believe your significant other is in it for the long haul, and if your partner believes the same of you, your relationship is likely a healthy one.
In a healthy relationship, both parties treat each other with care and compassion. All couples bicker from time to time, but people in healthy relationships are kind to one another, even when they disagree.
It’s healthy for couples to have individual interests and to spend time apart, but healthy couples do enjoy spending time together, whether they binge a TV series together, work out together, or enjoy regular date nights.
Whether you want to write a book, earn a degree, or start a business, it’s important that your significant other supports your dreams. You don’t have to have the same vision for your future, as long as you encourage one another to pursue your passions.
In a healthy relationship, partners collaborate on decisions. Whether you’re deciding something as mundane as what to have for dinner or something as momentous as where to live, you and your significant other should listen to each other and come to a mutually agreeable decision.
What you think of your relationship is the most important opinion to consider, of course. But if the majority of people who love you and want the best for you think you’re better off single, it’s a good idea to take an impartial look at your relationship to determine why other people don’t see it as a healthy one.
The best way to know that you’re in a healthy relationship is to consider how your relationship makes you feel. Infatuation can feel exciting and drama can masquerade as passion, but true love feels safe, calm, and empowering