Committing to someone in a new relationship can be serious business. You’re putting your faith and trust in another person hoping that things will work out. Are you making the right decision? Ask yourself these questions first—they’ll help you figure it out.
- How does this person treat me? This is one of the most important questions you can ask. Consider how your partner acts towards you. Are they kind, loving, and caring or are they abrasive, aloof, or borderline abusive? The answer to this question is going to be the foundation for your whole relationship. Choose wisely—the way they treat you will determine your long-term happiness and potential as a couple.
- How does this relationship feel in my gut? Most of the time, you just know. You can feel it if someone isn’t right for you. You can’t always feel it if someone is right for you, but at least you know when you’re better off on your own than with the person you’re dating. That feeling sits like a rock in your stomach, telling you that you need to abort the mission. I know it can sometimes to be easy to shove these feelings down, but they’re important.
- What are our differences? Is your partner a night person and you’re a morning person? This difference doesn’t necessarily have to be a dealbreaker, but it’s definitely something to think about. Another example is having different values, which is certainly a bigger consideration. It’s important to just consider the ways in which you diverge and how they’ll affect the relationship. That will vary depending on the couple, but you need to figure out your long-term compatibility before you commit.
- How do we handle conflict? How has conflict been handled when it’s come up so far? Has the conversation been loving and tolerant or has it been volatile and dismissive? The way that the two of you deal with trouble in the relationship is super important to lasting happiness. You certainly want someone who’s going to respect you, especially when emotions are heightened and you’re not exactly calm.
- How are things in the bedroom? This may seem like a shallow question, but if you’ve already had sexual contact, you know whether or not there’s chemistry there. It’s unfortunate when two people don’t vibe in the bedroom and if this is the case, you may want to really consider if you want to commit to them. It depends on how important sex is to you in a relationship and if you think the connection can improve.
- Am I attracted to a version of them or the real person? As humans, we have a tendency to project into the future and create fantasies about how we want or hope things will be. This can really distort romantic relationships because you end up falling in love with the idea of a person rather than the person themselves. In your current relationship, are you seeing your partner with clear eyes or are you living in a fantasy?
- Do we want the same things? Are you looking for someone to have kids and settle down with while your partner is just looking for a short-term thing? It’s important to be on the same page about what you want in life. It’s even more important to not try and change your partner’s mind when it comes to what they want. It’s a good idea to walk away if your desires are too different.
- What are your love languages? Love languages are the way that you express and receive affection and care. The five languages are words of affirmation, receiving gifts, acts of service, physical touch, and quality time. Everyone has their own specific type and it affects how you interact with a partner as well as how your needs are met. If you hate gifts and your partner requires that to feel loved, then you may want to think again.
- What are your dealbreakers? Maybe because the person was cute, you gave them a pass on the fact that they smoke cigarettes even though it really grosses you out. Or, maybe they’re a different political party than you and this really matters to you. Ask yourself what your absolute no-nos are and stick to them. If your partner has any of them, don’t settle. You’ll be glad later.