In a relationship, many of your actions impact your partner. It’s like you are in this together or something. Your partner’s concerns become your concerns. On your own, you have this incredible freedom where you can do whatever you want, whenever you want. When you’re in a relationship, you have this whole other person to worry about. As soon as you enter a relationship, you accept this responsibility.
There are two different responsibilities here:
- Responsibility to yourself — making sure your decisions and actions benefit you. I address this idea in my blog post: 7 Ways to Remain Authentic in a Relationship.
- Responsibility to your partner — making sure your decisions don’t hurt them.
Love is a labor, and we need to do our best to manage both components of this complex dichotomy.
I believe there are two personality traits both parties must have or acquire to maintain a healthy relationship:
A few days ago, I decided to voice my opinion on social media. Yes, I can be a little feisty, but it comes from the heart. Here’s the tweet:
I also shared it on the Awkward AF Facebook page, where it got some attention. Some people agreed, and others disagreed. Personally, I believe the meaning of the word “chick” connotes a woman you don’t fully respect. So, the term grinds my gears because when one uses the word, they are:
- Objectifying women as baby chickens
- Dictating the amount of respect they have for the individual
One woman challenged me by asking what I would do if a man asked me to take a word out of my vocabulary. I thought about it and decided that if I wanted to make him happy, I’d go ahead and not use this word, especially around him. I don’t think I would miss using the word, and in the grand scheme of things, it is an easy adjustment. I may not fully relate to the reason why it perhaps upsets him. Still, if I am aware that my behavior is causing any amount of grief, and I have the power and responsibility to fix it, I should do so. Generally, I perceive myself as a respectful person. I consider respectfulness to be one of my better qualities. Therefore, it is challenging when I do offend someone as it is not the norm for me. In those situations, I have to surrender to the fact that I am not perfect. It is best that I humble down, own up to, and fix my mistake. If I dig my heels in too deep, the tension is only going to get worse.
For those who don’t already know, I am an empath. Whether I want to or not, I absorb the emotions of others. It is a blessing and a curse. I can’t read minds, and I don’t claim that it’s anything supernatural. However, I can instantly sense the moods of others through a combination of their energy and behavior patterns. Think of it as heightened sensitivity. If someone around me feels tense, I feel it too. I find that people like to tell me about their troubles because they know I’ll understand without judgment. I love helping others in this way, sometimes I feel that it is my purpose. As an empath, one thing I’ll argue until I am blue in the face is that people do not always tell you when something is wrong. While it is better when they are open and honest, sometimes that can be challenging. Maybe they are ashamed that something is bothering them. Perhaps they don’t know how to tell you. Do you ever get hunches that something is wrong with your partner? Don’t ignore those hunches. That’s your intuition speaking, even if you don’t have any logical explanation, trust that inner voice. Using empathy to guide your decisions is an honorable way to live. I believe in challenging yourself to think about how your actions might impact your partner. This involves putting yourself in their shoes and making decisions accordingly.
Altogether, it is our duty to take care of our partners, knowing that each partner holds significant power over the other’s emotions. It’s critical to acknowledge this power and the responsibility it requires in order to maintain a healthy relationship.