Trade in unrealistic expectations for solid basic standards to build a long lasting relationship.
By Will Curtis
Written on Sep 18, 2023
Photo: IVASHstudio | Canva
Human beings have basic needs and these needs create basic standards for healthy relationships. Though every relationship is different in its details, there are common things we need from a romantic partner, and they all equate with basic human respect. This is the solid foundation of support for long-lasting relationships.
We have a tendency to create relationship checklists based on superficiality, status, or materialism. Most of those checklist items add up to a roll call of unrealistic or unachievable expectations. Yet, we do need to look for indications our relationship will provide a nurturing, reassuring, and supportive environment.
A healthy relationship starts with one of the simplest things a person can do, it is also one of the easiest things to fake or mask. Due to the simplicity of this act combined with the ease of using it for deception, it is also perfectly clear to see through. It all begins with a person’s face.
Here, YourTango experts reveal the basic standards women should have in any good relationship:
1. Authenticity from your face
Natural smiling, not forced, not fake.
— Michiko Tomioka, MBA, RDN, CDN, IFNCP
2. Mutual respect and genuine honesty
In a relationship grounded in respect and honesty, a woman should anticipate mutual understanding and equality. She deserves to be heard, her feelings and boundaries recognized, and her worth appreciated without condition.
Both partners owe each other transparency, consistent communication, and a commitment to nurture their bond through life’s ups and downs. True wisdom in a relationship recognizes its strength lies in mutual respect and genuine honesty.
— Clare Waismann, M-RAS/ SUDCC II Substance Use Certified Counselor
3. Kindness to build trust
If kindness is not present, love will not be present either. Kindness is a prerequisite to building a relationship of trust. After all, if you cannot be vulnerable with this other person, and have them treat you with kindness in that moment of vulnerability, you will not have a strong foundation for a good relationship. With kindness, you can have vulnerability — which builds trust, which builds love. A lack of kindness is perhaps one of the easiest red flags to spot — whether this person is ridiculing others, critical, or using toxicity to mask insecurity.
— Jennifer Hargrave, Managing Attorney, Hargrave Family Law
4. Honesty to nurture trust
A basic standard women should have for a good relationship is knowing the potential partner is honest about expressing feelings and in their actions. Without honesty, trust is not possible. Without trust, building a loving, mutually supportive relationship is unlikely. in fact, it’s the foundation for everything from deep intimacy to understanding and appreciating one another.
— Ruth Schimel Career, & Life Mgt. Consultant; Author
5. R.e.s.p.e.c.t. builds U.n.i.t.y.
Respect. Simple. Do it.
— Audrey Tait, MSc, CCC, RD
6. Comprehensive safe space
Accepting physical safety as a given, a woman must have a partner who welcomes her words, actions, and personhood openheartedly. With emotional safety, her personal growth and true self-esteem blossom, and she is open and intimate.
— Reta Faye Walker, Ph.D
7. Show up without expectations
I believe we need to let go of our expectations and get clear on our standards for who we want to be in a relationship. We can’t change other people – we can only show up as our best selves and contribute our whole selves to a relationship to make it good.
Each person brings their 100% so the quality of whether it’s “good or bad” will reflect the sum of what each person brings. It’s best to show up without expectations so when the surprises come, and they will, you’ll seek to understand not want someone to meet your expectations.
Without setting basic standards to maintain our own healthy boundaries, the vicious cycle of expectations and disappointment creeps in. What’s key to a good relationship is each person taking responsibility for what they bring to it.
— Carolyn Hidalgo, Soul Executive Coach
8. Physical/emotional safety
Every woman deserves to feel safe in a good relationship. It can be far easier to cultivate trust in a relationship when a woman feels physically safe and emotionally secure in the relationship.
— Niki Payne Clinical, Hypnotherapist
So there you have it.
Our experts agree on the basic standards of a relationship.
Look for someone who will create a safe place of no expectations where you both can trust in honest vulnerability as you sojourn through life together awaiting nature’s immutable laws to return your energy to the universe.
Now you know what to look for, put yourself out there ready to love.
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Will Curtis is an associate editor for Yourtango.