The strongest relationships are built on respect, trust, and boundaries that are communicated (instead of crossed). An easily overlooked detail by even the closest couples, the knowledge of each other’s boundaries is one that will help you avoid future arguments and understand why the past disagreements may have happened.
Although discussing boundaries sounds like a good idea for partners who are getting to know each other, it’s also a smart approach for any couple who is planning on sticking together for the long haul. By being mindful of your partner’s boundaries, you not only add value to your relationship, but also show your commitment to keeping it that way. Read on to discover the five boundaries to set that will allow your relationship to grow as much in health as it does in gratitude.
The manner in which you argue.
Regardless of how good your intentions are, arguments with your significant other are bound to happen. When this uncomfortable situation arises, it’s important to remember to argue in a healthy manner — instead of a demeaning one.
While everyone reacts differently to an argument, it’s up to you and your partner to discern the best way to approach one another. Are you someone who can’t stand when your partner goes off topic when you’re trying to confront the issue? Is your partner someone who would rather have space when he or she is upset? Once you discover the answers to these types of questions, apply what you know and watch every argument after be met with compromise instead of confusion.
How and when you offer advice.
There’s a difference between making decisions as partners and as individuals. For instance, despite the fact that you’re open to your partner’s suggestions on how to handle personal family matters, he or she might feel awkward if you try the same.
Even though offering advice is a form of caring, another way to show your affection is to know when your advice is wanted. Privacy is necessary in every connection and respecting it ensures that the spark continues. If your help is needed, it’s also important to not take offense or guilt trip your partner if your advice isn’t taken. After all, your partner is different than you and your differences are what makes your relationship so unique.
The way you commit.
Similar to how crucial it is to know your partner’s love language, it’s also beneficial to learn what you and your partner define as a commitment. Although you could assume this term means exclusivity, your partner could be used to open relationships. Or maybe your partner wants to swap passwords for your social media accounts, but you deem the suggestion as controlling. Occurrences such as these are where being aware of your partner’s boundaries on commitment come into play — while feeling violated tends to be a deal breaker in any relationship, knowing where the line is seems to be the only way to avoid overstepping it.
The consistency of how you communicate.
Before you leave your meeting at work with six text messages and an annoyed partner who claims you didn’t reply back in a timely manner, it’s wise that you both discuss your schedules, your preferred way to communicate, and your flexibility to do so throughout the day. While your job allows you access to your phone and computer at all times, your partner may have a career that’s based only on customer interaction. Aside from this, some people may wish to constantly interact while others enjoy some time and space alone.
Through having a general idea of each other’s communication methods, you’ll be able to find a routine that fits the both of you and forget any suspicions that used to arise from miscommunication.
The extent of what you will do for each other.
Doing things that you wouldn’t necessarily do if you weren’t with your partner is normal, but sacrificing your morals or what matters to you in order to do those things is negligent. Whereas you refuse to miss the monthly dinner with your best friends for any reason, your partner might have no trouble moving his or her plans with others to see you.
Be open to your significant other about what you’re willing to do for him or her — in general, you don’t always comprehend how important something is to another person and the only way you’ll know is if you discuss it.