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6 Conversations You Should Have With Your Partner Within the First Year of Dating

Updated on April 28, 2020
Kerrian mcmahon profile image

Kerrian is a professional relationship expert and analyst. She loves to write on her observations and research concerning relationships

The beginning of a relationship is always sweet and magical because most people put their best foot forward when they are getting to know each other. Due to the euphoria of the new relationship, it is not unusual for people to ignore or overlook some important topics and conversations.

Conversations reveal a lot about your partner’s thought process and interests. Even when important life topics come up for discussion at the start of a relationship, some couples would either lightly gloss over it, so as not to pop the fantasy bubble or completely ignore it due to fear of heavy topics and potential deal-breakers. Regardless, there are still topics that couples should discuss within the first year of dating to avoid hurt and heartbreak down the road after emotional investments.

It would do you much good to end a relationship you feel won’t work out well as soon as you can than to continue on for a long time and realize you made a mistake or do not share, understand and intend to compromise your ideals.

Here are some conversations to consider having if things are getting serious and you want to continue to improve the relationship;

1. Family

Family is one of the most important aspects of everyone’s lives. Discussing the meaning of family and your ideals when it comes to your family or building a family together is important at the start of a relationship. This is the time to discuss any family baggage or family dynamics, how to balance your role in your family with being in a relationship. You might have to be able to decide if they intend to go the long haul.

This is also an important time to discuss children. Do you have children? What role will your partner play in their life? You need to talk and understand if you both want the same things. Do you or do you not want children together? Does your partner’s choice align with yours? How many children? What is your idea of an ideal family? What is your stance on adoption?

There is always room for compromise or change of mind but it’s good to discuss it so you know and prepare for where you are headed.

2. Money and Financial Obligation

You would be surprised by the percentage of relationships and even marriages that have ended either gradually or abruptly due to money issues. Money is one of the most difficult topics to discuss in any kind of relationship, even a professional one. It is important that you get in front of it and discuss some areas as it concerns your relationship.

This is necessary so you can both understand each other’s money management techniques and financial expectations. It’s not really about discussing account balance, but it is expedient to at least discuss each other’s income, debt, and future plans. You should also talk about financial responsibilities, lifestyle, and support you would render or expect from each other, especially when you live together and have to pay bills.

3. Commitment

This might seem strange to you but a commitment has a wide spectrum of meaning to a lot of people. What does commitment mean to you? Living together? A marriage proposal? A happy relationship? Public display of affection? For some people, commitment involves signing legal papers and making it official while some others are okay with living together and having a stable and happy relationship.

You should discuss your intentions because this would tell your partner what level of commitment you are ready for and establish if you both want the same things and if ultimately they would be getting what they want or not.

4. Sex and Physical Affection

You probably already had sex several times already, however, that doesn’t guarantee that you know what your partner likes. It won’t be a bad idea to actually talk about it with your partner. It doesn’t necessarily have to be in a serious, matter of fact sort of way but in a light casual discussion. According to experts, sexual capability can make or break any relationship.

Sexual intimacy moods and expectations are different from each person, so you should have a discussion with your partner about this as your relationship grows. When it comes to sexual intimacy a lot of people have different desires as to what they are comfortable with or enjoy in bed. People also have different ideas about who should initiate sex, what your sex life should entail or what they like sexually. What are you most comfortable with? How do you both connect?

5. Long Term Expectations and Personal Goals

There are several expectations and responsibilities in a relationship but couples are sometimes reluctant or dismissive to discuss these. Assuming that your partner shares the same ideologies about life and balance as you do, could lead to conflict later on in the relationship. It is a good idea to have these types of discussions as soon as possible to avoid resentment and complaints of lack of support or understanding by you or your partner. Discussing the reasons for people’s ideologies and viewpoints makes a lot of difference in understanding them.

You also have your own personal goals and dreams, it is a very good idea to tell your partner about them and understand how you both feel about individual goals, employment, and stay at home partners. Are you planning to quit your job and follow your favorite band on tour? Are you applying to Ph.D. programs soon? Make it clear what the future holds for both of you.

6. The communication conversation

This is very important in dealing with conflicts and misunderstandings. While you might have studied and observed your partner when it comes to their ability or lack of communication skills in the relationship, it is also good to have a discussion about it. To prevent fights and miscommunications, try to analyze and understand each other’s communication styles, approach to situations, and reactions to issues.

If your relationship is new or old, you should have this discussion and come to terms with each other’s ideas. Insight is always helpful for relationship growth.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2020 Kerrian McMahon

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    • dashingscorpio profile image

      dashingscorpio 

      4 weeks ago from Chicago

      Excellent article!

      Some of the topics like family may not be all that important for teens and college students but all in all if two expect to build a life together these conversations are important to have.

      As you noted during the "infatuation/honeymoon" phase both people tend to bend over backwards to impress the object of their affection.

      Unfortunately many people make a commitment at this point without truly knowing if this is someone they really want to be exclusive with.

      Generally speaking people do not reveal their "authentic self" until have there is an "emotional investment" or they feel (safe) in the belief that you won't instantly walk away or they simply don't care if you do. :)

      Inexperienced daters tend to believe they've met their "soulmate" every time they start a new relationship. You really don't know anyone until after you've had some major disagreements, made compromises, and resolved issues. Nevertheless no one should be in a "hurry" to kill the "good times". It's okay to allow things to naturally unfold/evolve at it's own pace. Some people actually HATE the whole "getting to know you" dating process. They just want to fast forward to exclusivity.

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