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How to have a healthy relationship

Updated on August 2, 2012

What do we look for in relationships? Why are we in them? Is Chivalry dead? Is Romance dead? Are you in a dead end relationship? How do I find true love? When will I be loved?

In order to love someone, we must understand ourselves first. What do we want in a relationship? Who do we want? What qualities are we looking for?

Well, many people do not have these answers, because they have not been honest with themselves.

How can I be honest with myself?

Clear your mind, meditate or take some moments of silence. Ask yourself these questions- look yourself in the mirror if you have to- and answer honestly or as honestly as you can.

  1. Do I want a beautiful person?
  2. What does beautiful mean to me?
  3. If I fall in love, will I be ok with it?
  4. Am I ready to fall in love?
  5. Should I get to know the person first as friends?
  6. What could happen if I jump into a relationship?
  7. Can I give in a relationship?
  8. Am I willing to give (and receive)?

Other things to consider

  • COMPATIBILITY- are we compatible? Do we like or enjoy some of the same activities? Do I feel fulfilled socially or family wise with this person? In other words, will they do social things with me, will they meet and hang out with my family, are they family orientated?
  • AGREE ON POLITICS AND/OR RELIGION (OR LACK OF)- are we argumentive on these things? Do we care to just not care? Can we accept or do we not accept the other's lack of religion or religious beliefs?

People change over time. It's called evolution. Sometimes they convert or choose to give up their faith. Is a mixed marriage- one of two different beliefs wrong? Do I need someone who's the same religion as me?

Traditionally, from my own Catholic standpoint, I am told: Do not enter into marriage with someone of another faith, or lack of faith especially, for you need as a Christian to be encouraged and uplifted in your faith, not discouraged, because your spouse hates religion or doesn't practice. This is a scary thought but worthwhile. Marriage is difficult as it is.

I lived with a man for 1 year. Believe me it was close to hell at points. It really is important to agree or be ok with the other person's spiritual beliefs. Living together is not really a solution anyways, as far as I'm concerned. It just makes a woman seem less "honored" if you will in that she may never be asked for her hand in marriage or that "he's getting the milk without buying the cow".

On the other hand, it can be a real dealbreaker or dealmaker! You will really find out who this person is. But instead of going to all that trouble, it would really be better to trust your instincts, though I know some of you are STUBBORN!! Lol and want to see for yourself. (Especially young ones, or those who are new to love!)

Dealbreaker or no dealbreaker

Will we know when we meet Mr or Ms Right?

We should, though some find love is blind, or rather getting too hot and heavy can deceive us and make us think it's love, when it's our hormones or phenylethylamine, a neurotransmitter chemical in the brain that causes you to fall madly in love with someone by having sex-which bonds us together. This is often the case for women more so than men, and they will think they love the guy, but in reality, if they weren't "drugged" by this neurotransmitter, they'd notice all the "problems" they have with this person and the red flags would be seen.

What if we never meet someone with everything we want? Or most of it?

Well, we can't meet someone with everything. That's pretty impossible. We should keep an open mind, watch ourselves and what signals we give or receive and trust our gut (especially women- we have a special instinct that tells us when there's trouble!)

I think perhaps getting 3 out of 5 things on our "list", or 7 out of 10 is pretty good. All in all though, compatibility is important. If you are total opposites, and you can't spend time together outside the bedroom, then that is a disaster you should avoid.


The trouble with phenylethylamine, a neurotransmitter chemical in the brain that causes you to fall madly in love with someone, is it lasts only 3-5 years in a relationship- often called the "Honeymoon period". But it can be regenerated if couples are willing to try. Oxytocin is a chemical released everytime we cuddle or hold hands with someone, and works with lovers or friends.

In Conclusion,

For lasting relationships, we shouldn't "force" the attraction. It is possible, to grow to love someone who you are not attracted to, but I don't think that is a good idea because the "lovin" will never come naturally. If you're in a situation or relationship where you aren't attracted at all, you should look into finding a new mate, unless you really are happy with your partner.

Good luck in your trials and endeavors for "It's better to have loved and lost than to have never loved at all!"

Are you in love or lust? "You can be in love with somebody and never had sex with them..."

One final thought...

 What if you are madly in love, but the object of your affection does not love you back?  Or they just want you for sex, or want you for sex and company??

I can't answer that.  We all get hurt, it's often impossible to avoid.  But there are things you can do to avoid it, some of the time:

  • get to know someone well before you get physical
  • Know about him or her before you give in to your attraction (i.e. that they are not abusive, serial killer, whatever--though in some rare cases you may not know :(  "All's fair in love and war"
  • be careful, cautious, caring, conscientious, and candid :-) The 5 C's!!


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    • profile image

      erwinkennythomas 5 years ago

      Fantastic job!

    • schoolgirlforreal profile image

      schoolgirlforreal 7 years ago from USA


      thank you for reading. I'll take your advice into consieration. I can't promise anything-that is bit of thinking to do!


    • schoolgirlforreal profile image

      schoolgirlforreal 7 years ago from USA


      Thanks first of all for reading :-) I completely agree w/ everything you said. thanks for confirming it :) We are both on the same path and I'm 34 :)

    • Dave Mathews profile image

      Dave Mathews 7 years ago from NORTH YORK,ONTARIO,CANADA

      Schoolgirl: "Ask and it shall be answered, seek and ye shall find, knock and the door will be opened unto you."

      Let God be your guide. The many questions that you ask, can only be answered by God, so I would take it up with Him, keeping in mind that if you do not have the answers already, you are not ready yet.

      Brother Dave.

    • atienza profile image

      atienza 7 years ago from Northern California

      I've grappled with the same issues that you address in your hub. I'll be 30 next year and I've done the "shacking up" thing. I always wind up feeling that I'm not being true to myself, because I too was taught to be married before sex or living with someone. That's a hard decision to make, but I feel that if the person really loves you they'll wait. If the person is really trying to "get to know you", they'll take the time to do that and not rush the physical aspect. I can't deny that I battle with my own desires as well, but my self-esteem simply can't take it anymore. In terms of being "unevenly yoked", I dealt with that in my last relationship. I really believe that your mates' religious views should match your own. Being with a non-believer is doable, but it just doesn't feel "right". Thanks for a thought provoking article.