Relationships can bring out our best, but they can also bring out our worst.
It has a lot to do with who you’re with and the way they treat you and communicate with you.
If you’re with the right person, even the tough times are possible to get through with grace and communication.
If you’re with the wrong person, problems get out of control rapidly and even the small stuff starts to become overwhelming.
So how can you know whether your relationship is actually worth it?
If you can honestly say yes to six or more of the following twelve questions then your relationship is worth working on. If it’s below six, this relationship is something you need to seriously consider walking away from, or at least reassessing.
Let’s dive in!
1) Does your partner make you want to be a better person? (y/n?)
This is a simple yes or no question.
Wanting to be a better person is a given and should be your goal regardless.
But being with someone who makes you want to be better is not always the case.
When you’re truly in love and committed, continually improving is your second nature.
You don’t have to think twice about it: you want to be better, stronger, more empathetic, and you overflow with love for this person.
2) Do you and your partner communicate openly and share with each other? (y/n?)
How is the communication level between you and your partner?
Are you able to converse openly and share your thoughts and feelings, or do you hold back and self-censor for fear of offending your partner?
If you’re able to open up and talk openly then it’s a sign that this relationship is on the right track:
But if that’s not the case, there are a lot more problems to keep in mind.
This leads to the next question…
3) Are you able to disagree respectfully without taking it personally and getting angry or insulting each other?
Disagreements are natural in every relationship, but there’s a big difference between respectful clashes and angry shouting matches.
Are you and your partner able to disagree without getting down and dirty?
Or does it get personal with days and days of bitter silences and sarcastic back-and-forth?
If you can’t disagree in a healthy way it doesn’t bode well for the future of the relationship, especially once bigger matters arise.
4) Do you and your partner have interesting conversations and engage intellectually? (y/n?)
If you are able to talk openly about how you feel and what you think that’s one thing.
But to actually engage intellectually and talk about subjects that are interesting to each other is something else entirely.
When you find the person you’re with interesting it’s a massive bonus:
Not only are they a person you want to kiss and hold hands with, you also actually enjoy seeing the beauty and fascinating contents of their mind.
5) Do you and your partner make each other laugh (y/n?)
On a related note, how is the connection in terms of humor between the two of you?
Do you make each other laugh and tell jokes that actually tickle each other’s funny bones?
In other words, are your wits in sync?
On the other hand, maybe you find your partner’s jokes and sense of humor downright tiresome.
I’m sorry to say, but based on personal experience and mountains of research, having a partner whose sense of humor isn’t your cup of tea is a big sign you’re not very compatible.
6) Do you and your partner enjoy having sex with each other? (y/n?)
The physical side of relationships is something that many couples underestimate.
But let’s be clear:
If you don’t want to have sex with your partner quite a lot at least some of the time (and vice versa) there is a problem.
Your relationship doesn’t have to be all about sex, nor should it be.
But physical attraction to each other is a sign that you’re a good match. If it’s not there the relationship is likely to slide into more of a platonic friendship or toxic codependency.
7) Do you and your partner embrace each other’s flaws and all without trying to force each other to change? (y/n)
We all have flaws. It’s nothing to be proud of, and we should try to improve.
But it’s also nothing to deny or try to hide.
Are you able to show your flaws to your partner or do they judge and belittle you when you do?
Are they able to show theirs to you?
This doesn’t mean you have to approve or that they do. It just means you have a level of trust and intimacy that allows you to accept the truth of each other, including some aspects of brokenness.
You’re not in love with an ideal, you’re in love with each other.
8) Do you and your partner trust each other with personal info and secure information? (y/n?)
Private financial decisions are for couples to decide. Password sharing and all the rest of it is something that depends on each relationship and how serious it’s become.
But ask yourself this:
At the deepest level do you trust your partner to use your credit card and not rack up a bunch of purchases you didn’t want?
Would you be OK telling them something personal that could give them access to your private info?
This basic level of trust needs to be there for a relationship to be worth the effort.
9) Are you and your partner willing to give each other space and trust each other not to cheat? (y/n?)
This is a fairly straightforward yes or no question.
Temptation clearly does come up, even in the closest couples.
But in the bottom of your heart do you trust your partner to resist that temptation?
If there’s a shadow of doubt, there needs to be more maturation and communication in the relationship and it may be partly based on a codependent or emotionally insecure link.
10) Do you and your partner have similar or aligned core values and beliefs about politics, religion and family? (y/n?)
Opposites sometimes attract, it’s true.
But at heart, people in a serious relationship need to have some overlap on values and how they want their lives to go.
When you’re heading in two separate directions it’s very hard to build any kind of life together, even a long-distance life.
Do you and your partner share a basic common foundation or are you at odds?
It’s a crucial question to answer to know whether this relationship has legs.
11) Are you able and willing to put your partner before yourself during difficult situations? (y/n?)
Maintaining your own personhood in a relationship is vital. Your needs matter, and balancing them is key.
That said, there are times when putting your partner’s needs ahead of yours (and vice versa) will be necessary.
These may be moments of particular crisis or urgency, opportunity or change.
You’re not always going to be able to be equally supportive and sometimes one of you will have to put the other first, at least during a tough or intense time.
12) Does your partner make you feel more committed to your goals in life and your purpose? (y/n?)
Your partner should make you feel like you’re getting closer to what you want to be doing in life.
They are there to be on your side as much as possible and help steer you towards your broader purpose.
If you take a lot of flak for what you love to do or your life mission isn’t understood or accepted by your partner, then this isn’t the person for you.