We all have different expectations from our relationships. Some of these expectations are developed early during our childhood; some are developed by observing the relationships of friends and families while others are formed later in life as we become exposed to the media.
Being familiar with healthy relationships raises our expectations but observing failing ones can lower them just as easily. Most marital experts advise couples to have lower expectations in relationships.
They argue that if you expect less from your partner, you are less likely to be disappointed.
However, this advice is completely wrong. Donald Baucom, a psychology professor at the University of North Carolina who has studied marital expectations for more than ten years discovered that people only get what they expect.
People who have low expectations tend to be in poor relationships
People who have high expectations in relationships if their partner is more likely to be in a healthy and happy relationship while people who have low expectations tend to be in poor relationships where they are treated badly.
Do not lower your standards
This research suggests that you are more likely to be in the kind of relationship you want if you have high expectations rather than by lowering your standards and accepting the way you are treated.
It is recommended for couples to settle for the ‘good enough’ relationship. In a good enough relationship, it is vital to have healthy and high expectations in the relationship about the way you should be treated. People should expect their partner to treat them with love, respect, loyalty, and kindness.
They should be considerate and should take out time for their partners. Your expectations should indicate self-worth and should help you achieve a happy and healthy relationship, allowing you to connect with your partner more emotionally and intimately. It is also advisable to discuss your expectations outside your relationship with your friends or family to ensure that they are reasonable and not too high.
Arguments are good for a relationship as they lead to a greater understanding
You are bound to argue with your partner even if he is meeting all your expectations. It would be foolish to expect to solve all the problems in your relationship as almost two-thirds of conflicts are permanent. However, conflicts and arguments are good for a relationship as they lead to a greater understanding between you and your partner.
Do not expect your relationship to guide you to a path of self-actualization
It would also be foolish to expect your relationship to guide you to a path of self-actualization or spiritual enlightenment. Relationships can also not cure any traumatizing childhood wound so make sure that you do not expect too much from your partner or relationship, but do not expect to be treated poorly.
Make sure that your partner is not emotionally or physically abusive and treats you with respect.
You are in a good relationship if you are good friends with your partner
You will know you are in a good enough relationship if you are good friends with your partner, having a satisfying sex life, and are fully committed to each other. It is important that you have trust and confidence in each other and are able to overcome any differences in your relationship.
Make sure that you are there for your partner
Make sure that you are there for your partner if he is going through a hard time and are supportive of his dreams and goals. It is important to ensure that both of you are open to compromises and supportive of each other’s rituals, ethics, and beliefs.
Most importantly, both of you should be able to agree on some basic principles such as what love is, what home is, and what is the best way to raise your children. Expect this, and you will be a part of a healthy and happy relationship where you will be treated well.