Archive for April, 2012

How Do You Know If Your Relationship Will Last?

Sunday, April 29th, 2012

By Ronn Jerard

That is the question that numerous “in-relationship” couples want to know. Not that many people think about it much in the beginning, particularly if the relationship is moving forward swimmingly. But when the first quarrel occurs, you have to admit that most couples start to wonder if the relationship will survive this argument. And that leads to internal queries about whether or not theirs is a long term bond, or one that might go the way of the 8-track tape. They may even begin to contemplate seeking out an online dating service, “just in case”…

The truth is that no relationship can escape disagreements from time to time, so mature couples expect to experience them. Does this mean, however, that they should be ready to toss in the towel, or is this just a sign that there is work to do to ensure that issues are addressed as they arise?

I have come to the awareness that committed relationships constitute the most intense yet rewarding “workshops” in which one can engage. And, if the work is done on an ongoing basis, the growth that results can strengthen and deepen the connection between partners.

Truthfully, there are no rules that determine if your relationship will stand the test of time. But there are yardsticks by which one can evaluate the possibility of long-term success. First, how much do you and your partner have in common? I like to make a list of what is important to me, followed by a YES and a NO column. Then, I put a check mark in the appropriate column, based on what I have discovered about my partner. For example, if having a religious or spiritual grounding is important to me, does my partner share this value with me? If she does, I put a check in the YES column.

When I have completed my list, I add up the columns to determine if I have more YESs or more NOs. The results can be a fairly accurate predictor of future success in the relationship. The more YES check marks I have, the more willing I am to give this relationship an adequate amount of my time and energy; especially if I have already determined that I have deep feelings for my partner.

Another yardstick that is important to me is whether or not my partner and I are sexually compatible. With the possible exception of money, sexual incompatibility is one of the major contributing factors to the downfall of a relationship, according to researchers.  So, both partners must be totally honest in assessing just how important sex is to each of them, including its frequency. If I can get by with sex once a week, but my partner wants it three times a week, chances are that we are headed for trouble; in which case, we have a serious issue to work out.

I wish I could say that it is easy to predict if a relationship will last a lifetime, but that’s just wishful thinking. Others have written and spoken about this before, but I have learned that relationships fall into three categories: reason, season or lifetime. In the first case relationships that are for a reason occur when outwardly or inwardly one expresses a need. Examples include your need to be provided with guidance and support; your need to be helped through some difficulty; or to be aided physically, emotionally or spiritually. When the reason is accomplished, the two parties tend to drift apart, which can occur positively or negatively, and the relationship ends.

When someone comes into your life for a season, they are there to empower you; to assist you to grow, learn, experience, and/or to produce. This can be a happy and joyful time for a person, but when the season is over, so is the relationship.

I believe that we all look for a lifetime relationship with a special person. These relationships teach us qualities, skills and aspects of our character that help us establish a solid emotional foundation. It is this foundation that allows us to have a larger view of life, and to be in service to others. Learning to love, respect and value the person who is in your life for a lifetime simply makes you a better person.

That’s all I got. Perhaps these words may inspire or motivate you. If not, remember that I’m just sharing the truths that I have discovered. Through these words, I hope that you may be able to discover yours.