Now, I am no expert in this domain, and as far as I understand the way it works, nobody is. Ya, we do have relationship experts who advice and counsel us on what is the best thing to do under certain circumstances. But I like to believe that they have indulged in name calling and petty fights themselves, at on odd time or two. After all, they are just as humane as us. But as people (read friends and siblings) around me get into new relationships, and I see them blushing a deep crimson at one time and in the depths of gloom at other because ‘he/she doesn’t understand me’, I have more than a few words of wisdom to share. You know, been there done that! 😉
Here they go, in no particular order:
1) If you are in a relationship for good (read: long term/getting married), please do not mould it on the basis of how other people would like to see it. After all, you are the one who is going to be the central part of it. Mould it just the way you both can fit in snugly! 😉 (No pun intended :-P)
2) Set the ground rules. More often than not, all of us are particular about some habits that we absolutely cannot stand in our partner, while we may be able to adjust with some other distractions. Now these things differ from one person to the other, pretty much like one apple from the other! Please let the other person know of these early in the relationship and save yourself a lot of heart pain.
3) Communication is the key word. Now which relationship in the world does not have fights. Don’t shy away from them nor be prepared for one, every second. But if you disagree about something(s) (which I am sure you will, if not, it’s NOT normal!), sit down and discuss. No good came out of WWI or WWII, and nothing of the sort is going to happen with your silly fight too. No point of throwing tantrums, or living in denial, or washing your dirty linen in public. In the end, you are still going to have to sit down and discuss. Better do it the first time around.
4) NEVER GET PERSONAL during a fight! No mudslinging on your partner’s character or parents’ name calling. Run in the opposite direction if your partner does that. Respect is a very important ingredient in a relationship, more so than love. You cannot love a person until you respect him.
If your partner has the habit of getting personal, keep your silence and dignity. You will be so proud of yourself some years later, of not having given into the temptation of falling down to his/her level.
5) Save your best side for later.
Now which girl is going to reject a man who looks handsome, smells good, earns decently and is chivalrous as well? Or which guy in his sane mind wouldn’t like to take home a girl who is good looking, caring and loves him to death?
But more often than not, people on their best behavior in the early days of their relationship and once they tie the knot or the relationship is a year or two old, the behavioral curve starts hip-hopping. And you will be left wondering as to what changed.
Utilize the time that you get before marriage(esp. in arranged marriages) to know your partner better. Show your bad side too. If your partner can love with your follies, imagine how your life will be with all the good in you.
Otherwise you will be in for some real surprises later. And all surprises ain’t good!
6) Opposites attract, but make sure that you two have at least a thing or two in common. Otherwise, a few years down the line, you will have nothing worthwhile to discuss and only a pile of things to bicker about.
7) Last, but not the least. Show faith in your partner. It is good to keep your eyes and ears open and look for hidden meanings in the sweet (and long) conversations in the initial months, but don’t make it a habit of misunderstanding him/her for any and every small thing. After all, isn’t your relationship/marriage a leap of faith too?
You may or may not agree with a couple or all the points above. But that’s okay. What I have observed and learnt from my experience is that even though each of us are different in some way or the other and so are our mutual relationships, somehow all relationships follow some pretty similar graphs. (I think I will write another post discussing the various kinds of graphs ;-))
I can already see some cynics turning up their noses at the idea of falling in love with a check list in hand. Of course, love is blind, deaf, mute and completely illogical! But it alone is not sufficient for an “and they lived happily ever after” world. After all, people are not paper that you can bundle them up and see under a lamp!
So dearies, once you have fallen (in love), stand up, brush yourself and do consult your checklist before taking the plunge and saying those beautiful words, “I Love You too!”
Ther are no perfect people or relationships in this world. Just the Happy ones and the miserable ones!
All pictures courtesy Google.