So you’ve been dating someone for a little while, and things are going well. They make you laugh, and everything feels super easy when you’re with them. You hear your friends complaining about their SO’s, but you can’t really relate… It sucks to tell you this, but things aren’t always going to be like that.
Somedays, you’re going to feel like shoving your partner in front of a bus, you’re going to disagree over something stupid, or someone is going to say something without thinking that really hurts. That’s just how relationships go. You won’t be happy with each other all the time.
Overcoming the bad days and wanting to put in the effort to show your partner that you care more about them than your pride is what makes you stronger together.
Adversity should make you better
When I was learning how to drive, I remember being told, “you won’t be a good driver because nothing goes wrong; you’ll be a good driver because of how you react when something does go wrong.”
Relationships are the same way. The downs are inevitable, and a good relationship isn’t defined by how things are when it’s all sunshine and rainbows.
A better relationship is one that can survive every up and down, not the one where everything is amazing until one little argument blows everything up. I mean, think about it. Would you rather have someone by your side who will help you work through a hundred problems or someone who shuts you out and pushes you away at the first sign of trouble? Personally, I’ll take the former.
Are the lines you’re drawing worth it?
Fights are unfortunately common when you are around someone a lot, or when you live together, or even just talking on the phone a lot.
When you’re in a relationship and start to fight, it can be hard to realize that it isn’t worth it to hold onto your pride. What do you gain by refusing to compromise or apologize? Even if you’re not in the wrong, it still sucks to be on your SO’s sh*t list. I’m not telling you to shut up and apologize over every little thing, of course. Just make sure you’re really thinking about whether or not whatever you’re fighting about is worth fighting over.
Is being late for a date worth spending the night not talking to them? What about not doing the dishes? Is that worth passive-aggressive comments about not pulling your weight? Understand which hills you’re willing to die on.
It’s hard to feel steady when the rug has been pulled out from under you. External forces are going to put a strain on your relationship, too and there’s, unfortunately, nothing you can do about it. The economy, global pandemics, and family drama can all make things really hard on you and your partner.
Putting in the effort to be with and understand someone is well worth the hardships you’ll face if they feel the same way for you. The right person will want to move mountains to be with you and work with you to get through all of life’s problems.
Every couple is different and will face different issues and conflicts. If you can face them together with a sense of realism and the desire to put in the work, you’ll both be much happier, and you’ll probably be together a lot longer.