We all know relationships are tricky, but don’t let these myths trick you…
Even the greatest relationships have their touch moments. Your friends try to give you advice, but it is hard to differentiate between who to listen to and what is healthy or not for a relationship. It’s even harder when we don’t have any good examples to follow in our life.
It seems like the key is to follow your gut rather than listen to others about what is best for ourselves and our relationships. The best advice is to listen to your partner as they are the only ones who truly matter in any relationship. Don’t trust the mass amount of fake information and advice out there!
Here are some of the myths floating around:
1. “Relationships are always equal.” Not all aspects in relationships hold the same weight. You scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours” doesn’t really apply where relationships are concerned. Keeping tally of what you do for your partner or what they do for you is toxic for a relationship.
In a loving partnership, you should always do your best without expecting the same in return. Of course you don’t want to be a pushover or doormat, so as long as you know your partner loves you and will do the same, you should always try your best for them. Communication is key here.
2. “A good relationship means that you don’t have to work at it.” This is not even a little bit true. The more you work, the stronger the relationship. Having to overcome issues is not a bad thing.
Lisa Blum, Psy.D, a psychologist who’s concentration is on couples and relationships, said that growing a healthy relationship is much like growing a garden: “It’s a beautiful thing but you wouldn’t expect it to thrive without a whole lot of labor and TLC.” To Blum, it is all about how happy you are. Everyone needs to make an effort.
3. “Fighting means you shouldn’t be together.” There is a vast amount of research out there about couples who fight. It is never about if they fight or not, but rather how they do it. Believe it or not, there are right and wrong ways to argue.
An argument is only productive if both sides are listened to and heard out thoroughly. You have to learn something from the argument, fight, or conversation. A relationship only gets worse when fights aren’t resolved or someone feels their point didn’t come across.
4. “Loving each other means you always understand the other person’s needs.” How can you succeed when myths like these just set you up to fail? No one is perfect. It doesn’t atter how well you think you know your partner, no one is a mind-reader!
A healthy relationship requires successful communication. Feelings need to be heard and listened two between partners. According to psychologist Blum, in order to properly measure how strong your relationship is, you don’t have to count what the partner does right, but that they at least consider you and your feelings and try, despite the fact that they may occasionally get it wrong.
5. “There are specific gender roles. It is time to let go of gender roles in relationships.” Come on, we’re not in the 1920’s anymore. There shouldn’t be rules regarding who can be chivalrous, make a move, or pay for a date.
As a recent study indicated, in three-quarters of stable relationships, men have been the ones to first say “I love you,” which isn’t the expected result if you abide by traditional gender rules.
6. “As long as there is love, there will be passion.” We all know the honey-moon period when you first start a relationship is the best, and the most intense. However, it is entirely normal for passion to slowly sibside as a relationship grows. That doesn’t mean you aren’t meant to be together, but rather that expectations don’t align with reality.
The better thing to do is find new ways to enjoy each others company, whether it be to travel together, go on an adventure, or just do something new. Routine is crushing, and humans are adventurers by nature and want to experience the passion that life has to offer.
7. “Being in a relationship means you don’t need to be close to other people.” This isn’t accurate at all, as humans are social beings! It is important to have relationships outside of your lover, and sometimes it is even necessary for a healthy relationship.
As close as you would like to be with your partner, you don’t want to be co-dependant. Even worse, you can’t let a lover dictate how you run your life or friendships. It is best to keep a healthy balance of love and friendships or relationships with family members. A lack of this can even be toxic in relationships!
8. “If you’ve been together a while, you know everything there is to know about your partner.” Regardless of how long you’ve been together, or how much time you spend with one another, you will never know every single thing about someone else. You should still strive to learn new things about each other!
According to a study from 1997, the amount of time spent with someone didn’t directly equal how much more you know about that person.
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