Being in a relationship is tricky. There are ups and downs, and it can be hard to feel totally comfortable in being yourself (especially in a new partnership). However, they're things you shouldn't hide from your partner or be ashamed of if you want to give your relationship a fair chance to grow and thrive. While it might seem scary, it's better in the long-run to be genuine and candid.
As a certified health coach, I work with clients on building confidence and satisfaction within their relationships, so they can feel happier each day and have more positive energy around them. When you're dating someone, or even living with a partner, the energy is super important, as negativity can impair your quality of life. By establishing trust and openness, you'll be able to tackle problems better together and have a healthier relationship. Here are 13 things you should never hide from your partner or feel ashamed about. If you're lying or feel guilty for being true to yourself, it could signify a deeper problem in your relationship. Instead, look to sharing in each other's experiences and being unafraid to expose moments of weakness of those that make you less proud. When it's around someone you love, it shouldn't be too heavily criticized.
1. Your True Self
"If you feel like you have to be a certain way or act a certain way to be with your partner, this can be a problem. You should never be afraid of expressing who you are and what is important to you," says Erika Fay, LMFT and Certified Transformational Coach, over email with Bustle.
2. Your Future Goals
"It is also important to share your thoughts about the areas of your life where you are looking to grow and change," says Fay. "For example, lets say you have the goal of being financially free and debt free. It's important to let your partner know about your goals so that he or she can support you along the path of reaching your goals," Fay adds.
3. Spending Habits
You shouldn't hide your finances, advises Michelle Sinkovits Ferguson, Divorce Attorney & Partner at Greenberg & Sinkovits, LLC., over email with Bustle. It's "not unusual to maintain separate accounts," but "full transparency is key," shares Ferguson. Being honest and open about your account history will keep you both united as a couple.
4. A Desire To Be A Parent
Ferguson also says that you should be honest about your desire for children upfront. Some people don't see a future with kids, so if that's the case, you need to address it before the relationship gets too deep. You can also discuss the number of kids and how you wish to raise them, if those topics are of concern.
5. Your Personal Struggles
"As a coach that specializes in working with women who have suffered from disordered eating, poor body image and low self esteem, I have seen one too many women hide their past problems with food, their body and themselves," says life coach Dana Peters, over email with Bustle. "When you share your struggles and difficulties you not only strengthen your bond through your vulnerability but you also set the precedence for an open and nonjudgmental relationship for the future," adds Peters.
6. Family Drama
"While I'd advise anyone to execute their best judgement, it's never the best idea to keep secrets about your family," says Peters. "Ultimately the truth comes out and your partner may question why you felt you couldn't be straight with them about any of your family issues," Peters adds.
7. Your Cell Phone
"If you're hiding your phone from your partner, it seems suspicious. While you don't need to share every detail of your messages, covering up texts and moving your phone away from your partner comes off as sketchy," says Peters. Be open and trust that your partner won't start reading your texts when you're gone.
8. Dating History
"Anyone who makes assumptions about you based off who you've dated in the past is probably not worth your time," explains Peters. "So be upfront about who you've dated and forthcoming about the negatives and positives of those relationships," Peters recommends.
9. White Lies
While some white lies can be okay, as there's no harm in hurting someone you care about if the matter is trivial, often times white lies add up to bigger lies, and they can ruin a relationship. Being honest about things that even seem small could be helpful, as you never know what else it can reveal if left unsaid.
10. Any Lingering Debt
"There's a lot of shame and embarrassment that comes with finances. Whether you make more then your partner or you make much less, maybe you are in thousands of dollars of credit card debt or your partner is drowning in student debt... all of these situations play a role in your lifestyle and planning your future," says Peters. "It may be a difficult conversation to have but being transparent about your financial situation may help you avoid smaller arguments based off a misunderstanding about each others financial situations," Peters recommends.
11. That You're Upset
It might seem like a way to avoid an argument, but it can actually make it worse, as the build up of resentment can lead to more intense outbursts later on. If you're feeling upset, it's better to be up front about it and address the issue. You shouldn't have to hide your negative feelings, as they're valid.
12. Not Liking Something
Just because your partner likes something, it doesn't mean you have to, also. You should stick to your beliefs, and be honest when you don't enjoy a certain activity or have a mutual interest. While, watching a sports game could be a nice compromise from time to time, you don't need to pretend like you're a huge fan.
13. Having Feelings For Someone Else
If your or your partner is cheating in the relationship, it's likely coming from a dissatisfaction that could be addressed through healthy dialogue, instead. If you have an indiscretion or have feelings of desire for someone else, tell your partner immediately to put an end to it and try and figure out your next steps as a couple. You shouldn't be ashamed of feeling distant and having longing, but you need to talk about it. You shouldn't have to get to the point of cheating (which is a big no-no).
If you are hiding any of these things from your partner, or feel ashamed to be yourself, it might mean that this relationship isn't right for you, or needs a push in a healthier direction.
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