Continue reading to understand if your relationship problems are rational or not.
A relationship is the outcome of two people connecting, and growing together over time. Unsurprisingly, there is no long-term relationship without disagreements, and nobody can predict the future. Rather than running for the hills everytime you and your partner have a spat, it’s more important to understand how to fight better, rather than not at all.
To optimise your chances of a successful relationship, it’s crucial to distinguish between what is a hurdle vs. a dealbreaker. Healthy relationships are ones where both partners have mutual respect, open communication, and the willingness to work together.
Read on for our take on hurdles vs. dealbreakers, and how to deal with them.
Definition: A problem or difficulty that you must solve or deal with before you can achieve something.
This one is so tricky we could write a whole book on it, but we’re going to do our best to make it quick. The good news is that there is a 99% chance you can overcome most common relationship issues that come your way. Most happy couples have two minds and one heart, so if one person is feeling some type of way, the other person probably is too. Clear communication is the antidote to relationship hurdles. Keep in mind that it's you both versus the problem, not against each other.
Definition: Something that would cause a person to abandon a plan, mutual arrangement, agreement, or relationship.
Think of qualities you can’t stand in a partner, or in people in general. These could be things like: lack of ambition, views on children and offensive language. These might not sound like big red flags in the beginning, but they can be detrimental in the long term. It’s best to do this exercise before getting into any relationship, because you then know exactly what you’re getting into and it can help prevent future conflict.
Everyone has certain turnoffs. On this, we have a lot to learn from the characters of F.R.I.E.N.D.S - If your deal-breakers are serious issues and are linked to your overall moral compass, you should definitely stick by them.
Be like Ross (who ran away from Cheryl’s house because she was so messy) and unlike Chandler (who broke up with his girlfriends for gaining weight to not liking their laughter).
Say you really like someone but they have dealbreaker qualites - what do you do?
Whatever you decide to do, know that there are more important things than love. The rational side in us recommends creating a pros/cons list (a la Clueless), but the emotional side says follow your gut. If the person is someone you really care about, talking it through can give you both a chance to work through it.
What if you’re already in a relationship and your partner has grown to develop a “deal breaker” quality?
It is wholly possible that this is just a hurdle and can be crossed. If they don’t seem to shake it off or you’ve tried but it hasn’t worked, it might be time to seriously assess your relationship. Again– instinct and honesty are the most important qualities here. We often delude ourselves into thinking people change, but if you’ve been burned too many times, it’s probably time to wise up.
At the end of the day you have to consider what's rational vs outrageous. Decide between your problems being a dealbreaker vs a small hurdle, and act accordingly.
Getting into a relationship is like getting into college– the work doesn’t end after you get in.
A relationship only works if both people want it to. You have to continually take care of it and grow it, just like your GPA or that long-forgotten houseplant.
If you’ve got questions of your own, we’re happy to help! Send us an email or DM so we can get back to you– always anonymously, always honestly.