- Be aware of what you and your partner want for yourselves and what you want from the relationship.
- Let one another know what your needs are.
- Realize that your partner will not be able to meet all your needs. Some of these needs will have to be met outside of the relationship.
- Be willing to negotiate and compromise on the things you want from one another.
- Do not demand that a partner change to meet all your expectations. Work to accept the differences between your ideal mate and the real person you are dating.
- Try to see things from the other’s point of view. This doesn’t mean that you must agree with one another all the time, but rather that both of you can understand and respect each other’s differences, points of view, and separate needs.
- Where critical differences do exist in your expectations, needs, or opinions, try to work honestly and sincerely to negotiate. Seek professional help early rather than waiting until the situation becomes critical.
- Do your best to treat your partner in a way that says, “I love you and trust you, and I want to work this out.”
Relationship Issues and Counseling
If you are feeling distressed about a relationship, you may wish to consider individual or couples counseling. Counseling can help you identify problematic patterns in your current relationship and teach you more effective ways of relating. If you are grappling with a relationship problem and would like some help, we encourage you to contact people in the field