Human beings are social animals, and most of us yearn for close relationships with other people. Relationships involve a strong, deep, or close association or acquaintance between two or more people that may range in duration from brief to enduring. This association may be based on inference, love, solidarity, regular business interactions, or some other type of social commitment. Many relationships are formed in the context of social, cultural and other influences.
The science of relationships boils down to certain fundamentals that are simultaneously simple, obvious and difficult to master, viz., empathy, positivity and a strong emotional connection, which impel the happiest and healthiest relationships.
Why do we form relationships? –
There are specific underpinnings that help forge different relationships, which have far-reaching effects on the lives of those involved in them. Some of the reasons why we form relationships are mentioned below:
- We are wired for relationships. Simultaneously, we are also wired for emotional experience and emotions often color our thoughts. All relationships involve different emotions to varying extents.
- We live longer and happier lives when we have people who love us and support us in our lives. The research shows that what matters more for our longevity and our quality of life at the end of our life is how much we were loved.
- Those who continue to create more love in their lives also create more opportunity, money, and fun. Having a dependable person with us helps us achieve what we actually want to.
- Relationships can help to make us better people. Love of the partner has a powerful motivating effect on us that can goad us to move forward resolutely.
- Having someone who loves or knows us deeply is validating.
- Love and romance create warmth, hope, and happiness in the life of partners.
- Having a hand to hold as we go through life makes the difficulties we experience easier to deal with. When things go awry, knowing that our mate will stand by us through thick and thin will allow us to stay positive and help us overcome difficulties.
Essentials of healthy relationships -
Most of us grumble that they have been often ditched in their relationships. But the fact is those essential fundamental principles of a healthy relationship are equally applicable to both the partners. While assessing the reasons for a failure of a relationship, we do so from our own perspective without taking into consideration that of the other.
Below are mentioned some basic essentials for a healthy relationship:
Transparency – The partners, who are aware of what the other is doing, feel safe and develop a sense of security and consistency about their relationship.
Communication – It is one of the most vital elements of a healthy relationship. Talking to one another about everything introduces transparency keeping away a doubt of potential deception or sneakiness.
Laying one’s cards on the table - Telling the truth about the way that we feel can only benefit a relationship. Concealing something in intimate relationships is detrimental to them. Always speak candidly about motives, opinions, and intentions.
Respect - In a healthy relationship, both partners must have mutual respect for one another. It also means being mindful of your partner’s feelings and not doing things that might really hurt them.
Honoring personal boundaries - We all have personal boundaries on what makes us feel good, comfortable, safe, etc. In a healthy relationship, we should feel 100% comfortable communicating those boundaries and know that they will be respected.
Trust - All healthy relationships require mutual and unguarded trust between partners. We must always remember that it takes time to build trust in a relationship. It usually doesn’t come right off the bat. When our partner fully trusts us with their feelings, we should respect them and not betray their trust.
Support - One of the best things about being in a healthy relationship is having a supportive partner. In a healthy relationship, partners will support each other and treat each other as equals. They won’t use tactics to manipulate, control or put down each other. They will be protective of each other but not overly possessive.
Intimacy - A strong and positive emotional connection brings intimacy, which promotes affection, attachment, and devotion to each other.
The bottom line –
We are primarily hard-wired to form relationships. Most of us find various ups and downs in our relationships that we can handle effectively without ruining them. But, at times, our relationships develop certain glitches, which make them begin to crumble down. Unless both the partners take effective and prompt measures, they can’t be prevented from crumbling down completely.
The onus of the health of a relationship rests equally on the shoulders of both the partners. And it is noteworthy that we can learn to infuse the essential elements for the sustenance of health of our relationships.
Dana Tate from LOS ANGELES on August 21, 2018:
The sad part is there are some people who realize too late in life how important relationships are and why loving and being loved is worth pursuing more than money. It baffles my mind that even though we know death is inevitable, I mean we see it all the time, we cannot appreciate or seek the things that matters most.
I know so many people in their later years who are pinning for those relationships they destroyed or didn't appreciate. For example: their children, lost loves, destroyed friendships. It reminds me of love birds in a cage. When one dies the surviving mate dies not much long after. Love is essential. Relationships are essential. We were wired to have a relationship. When I minister to people the first thing I tell them is; God, does not call you into a religion, what He is seeking is a relationship with you.
Dr Pran Rangan (author) from Kanpur (UP), India on August 11, 2018:
Thanks for expressing your views so explicitly on the topic about which many people's views differ.
I agree that traits that make an ideal mate at ages 17 or 18 aren't likely to be the same at ages 25, 35 or beyond.
Very true that life is a learning experience, to which our relationships contribute a lot.
dashingscorpio from Chicago on August 11, 2018:
"But, at times, our relationships develop certain glitches, which make them begin to crumble down." - Very true!
Not every relationship was meant to last forever.
When it comes to love and relationships most us (fail our way) to success. Very few people hit a homerun their first, second, third, or fourth time up at bat. If this were not the case we would all be married to our high school sweethearts!
When we're young we tend to pursue relationships without having done the introspective thinking to figure out who (we) are let alone know what we need in a mate for life. We allow "impulsive connections" and "happenstance" to dictate our relationship choices. We measure our lives by what's (in the moment).
It's the equivalent of going shopping without a list!
What traits makes for an "ideal mate" at ages 17 or 18 aren't likely going to be what one wants in a mate at ages 25, 35, or beyond.
In fact it's because of our failed relationships and having experienced heartache and betrayal that causes us to craft our mate selection process and "must haves lists". We learn to "date smarter".
Generally speaking most people date more people than they fall "in love" with and they fall "in love" with more people than they marry. Essentially life is a learning experience and we're also evolving.
"Some people come into our life as blessings. Some people come into our lives as lessons." - Mother Teresa
Dr Pran Rangan (author) from Kanpur (UP), India on July 26, 2018:
Thanks Ms. Carolyn for enjoying my article.
I agree that both persons involved in a relationship are equally responsible for its health. If a relationship crumbles down, both are equally responsible too.
Carolyn Fields from South Dakota, USA on July 26, 2018:
Enjoyed the article, and agree with most of it. The only thing I would take issue with is your observation, "Most of us grumble that they have been often ditched in their relationships." This isn't true for me at all. Sure, I broke-up with several boyfriends before I married, but it was generally mutual. I'm wondering if truly "most" people feel that they are "often" ditched. If so, that's very sad.
Dr Pran Rangan (author) from Kanpur (UP), India on July 25, 2018:
Thanks for reading the article.
I agree with you that the same applies to all relationships, including LGBT ones.
Galahad Randall S. Unciano on July 25, 2018:
I believe, this workd the same way even for LGBT relationships. Thanks for this article.