9 Activities Your Partner Should Enjoy Doing With You If They're "The One"
Whether you like to admit it or not, we all go into relationships with a set of expectations. Some relationship expectations are too high, and some are not. But according to experts, one of the biggest and most reasonable expectations you should have in a relationship is to be with a partner who genuinely enjoys doing certain basic things with you. If not, your relationship may not be the right one for you.
Every relationship is different. So as Frances Metzman, relationship expert and author of The Cha-Cha Babes of Pelican Way tells Bustle, "The types of activities your partner should genuinely enjoy doing with you is very subjective." It all comes down to your individual needs, and how your interests mesh.
For instance, if spending time with your family is a top priority for you but your partner prefers socializing with friends, compromise is key. But even after you've worked things out, it's one thing for your partner to genuinely like spending time with your family and it's another if you have to drag them out every gathering. How can you enjoy spending time with your loved ones if the one you love is pouting in the corner because they don't want to be there? If this is the case, no amount of compromise can change how they truly feel. Your values just might be incompatible.
So according to experts, if your partner doesn't genuinely enjoy doing the following things with you, it's probably not meant to be.
1. Spend One-On-One Time With You
This may seem like an obvious one. But if you've been together forever, boredom can hit and you may find yourself wanting to spend time with other people. At that point, spending time with your partner may start to feel more like a chore than something you actually want to do. So if your partner is truly "The One," relationship coaches, Diana and Todd Mitchem, tell Bustle, it's important to genuinely like each other's company. "If your partner doesn’t feel the same and avoids one-on-one time like the plague then you will want to have a serious conversation to find out why that is happening," they say.
One really great question to ask is, "Where do you see out relationship five years from now?" According to the Mitchems, your partner's answer should give you a clear vision of where their heart is in the relationship. "If you find out that they don’t like spending time with you or don't see the relationship in the same way you do five years from now, you may want to move on to find someone who will enjoy you and your company, as well as plan a life with you," they say.
2. Spend The Night
This is a very telling sign when you're in the early stages of dating. "If you don’t live with your partner and they never invite you around to their place, they could be trying to hide something," Kelly Pretty, Soulmate Strategist and founder of “Connecting the World Through Love,” tells Bustle. If you're looking for something long-term and living with your partner is something you want to do, you should genuinely enjoy spending the night and just sleeping together. But if they constantly make excuses to not stay the night, Pretty says, it's another sign of disconnect in the relationship.
Again, while this can mean your partner isn't super invested just yet, that isn't always the case. "Communication is key," she says. "Once you have had a conversation it is easier to understand your partners perspective and find a compromise, but remember your worth and don’t settle for less than you deserve if they aren’t willing to work on it."
3. Tell You What They Want In Bed
"Sometimes this comes naturally to partners but others have to work on it," Bethany Ricciardi, sex educator and relationship expert with Too Timid tells Bustle. If your relationship is going to last, your partner should genuinely enjoy being with you sexually, and that includes being open with their fantasies and desires. "Being physically attracted to someone and having the sexual desire to be with them is very important and can sometimes come easier than performing the actual act of sex," she says. So start talking, find what you like and what works for the both of you, and get to it.
4. Support You And Your Interests Even If It's Not Something They're Into
Let's face it, you're not going to love every single thing your partner loves. At the same time, they may not completely understand why some things are important to you. But if your relationship is going to work, licensed psychologist Dr. Danielle Forshee tells Bustle, your partner should recognize your feelings for something and be supportive. "It’s not specifically about the activities themselves, it’s about whether or not your partner understands the importance of what a specific activity means to you," she says. In short, they should enjoy doing it because they know it means a lot to you.
If they don't or flat out refuse, Dr. Forshee says it may signal that your partner has difficulty with empathy or compromise which are important characteristics for a successful relationship. "Make sure that the both of you were able to be heard and understood by each other and then take it from there," she says. "One of the key foundations a relationship is to be able to hear each other’s’ perspective and come from a place of mutual understanding."
5. Meet The Important People In Your Life
When you get to a more solid and committed stage in your relationship, you're going to meet each other's friends and family. But as Pretty says, "If your partner is still not happy to meet with your loved ones by the six month mark, it is worth considering if they are the type of person you have a future with and your ideal fit."
If you're struggling with your partner's lack of follow-through or commitment, she suggests tuning into your own guidance system to de-stress. "Meditation will allow you to connect to the breath and relax offering clarity of mind," Pretty says. "We often get caught up in our own thoughts and worries. Meditation will allow you to make a good choice as to whether you are in the right relationship or not."
6. Choose A Weekend Away With You Over A Weekend Away With Friends
When you get into a relationship, there are certain decisions you will have to make. For instance, choosing a holiday weekend away with your significant other or a holiday weekend away with your group of friends. "If your partner isn’t interested in going on holiday with you and would rather spend their money on holidays with friends it is usually a sign that you deserve better," Pretty says. In order to build a healthy and connected relationship, your partner should be happy to make time in their schedule for you and be consistent with it, she says.
If you find that your partner can't seem to sacrifice quality time with their friend for quality time with you, the best thing you can do is to focus on yourself. "You can’t be the one that changes them," she says. "Do not take it personally if they aren’t invested in you or able to commit. This is actually a reflection of them, not you and we often forget this."
7. Fix Problems With You
Every relationship has ups and downs, but what you and your partner do when your relationship is in less-than-perfect shape is what matters most. "If your partner is 'The One' and you two have a fight, they will make sure that they sit down and solve it with you," the Mitchems say. "Your partner should have the fighter mentality when it comes to making your relationship last." This is something that you again can't force your partner to do. "When someone is right for you, there's a feeling that nothing can stand in your way to true happiness because you can always find a way to solve it," the Mitchem says. So they suggest to weigh how you feel in the relationship and then decide if this is someone that you want to spend the rest of your life with.
8. Appreciate The Little Things In The Relationship
"Gratitude is another cornerstone of any long-lasting relationship," the Mitchems says. So if you and your partner are meant to be, they will appreciate everything that you do for them. You'll know because they'll tell you. "Any balanced relationship has both people showing gratitude for one another," they say. "If you’re the only one that shows any appreciation and gets stuck with the to-do list, then you should have a conversation with your partner about why they don’t feel that gratitude is an important part in your relationship." Discussing your love languages can also clue you both into how you'd like to receive love and affection.
9. Be Open About Their Feelings
It's no surprise that communication is the key to fixing a lot of relationship issues. But communicating shouldn't only be used to solve problems. If your partner is meant for you, the Mitchems say, talking to you about anything and everything should come effortlessly for them. "The conversations will seem to flow when you talk about the future together and what you want out of life," they say. However, if your partner struggles with opening up or you just end up having conversations that lead to arguments, chances are they aren't meant for you.
So before you even think about taking your relationship to the next level or start thinking your partner is "it," you should be on the same page about things that really matter to you. "If you have similar interests or it’s not that important to you to share hobbies with your significant other, then great," Metzman says. "But if there's a lot of deviation from your needs, think very carefully. In all probability, you will not change your partner."
Sometimes patience won't pay off and other times it will. If you get the sense that your partner doesn't genuinely like doing basic everyday things together, they may not be the one for you. If you do decide to move on, you can find a partner who will.