Love Me As I Love You: Is It Worth Being Too Demanding In a Relationship?

We reveal the secrets of harmonious couples.

Do you think you are overly demanding of your beloved? This, by the way, is normal, quite trendy. Judging by a recent publication in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, in recent years, lovers have shown a clear increase in requests for each other. In the old days, a life partner was primarily appreciated as a good partner, or rather, an additional pair of working hands, necessary for harvesting or preparing a house for winter. Today, everyday tasks have faded against the background of lofty goals – self-esteem, self-expression and self-realization. It is not patience and hard work that is at the forefront, but understanding whether this relationship is helping you to become better.

As the marriage strength curve is relentlessly creeping down, the question arises, which is better: stay faithful to high standards, risking disappointment if your tandem cannot meet them, or spit on advanced settings and not expect too much from a partner?

Psychologists divide people in relationships into two categories: those who believe in the existence of other halves, and those who rely on personal (and partner) growth in the process of living together.

And although most of us are ready to accept a mix of both formats, there are principled fans of the same theory. Believing in the idea that there is only one person with whom you are made for each other is an unreliable foundation for a relationship. The authors of the aforementioned article report that those who believe in destiny put less effort into resolving conflicts. In their opinion, quarrels with a kindred spirit are simply impossible, since they contradict the logic of ideal harmony. If there was a conflict, it means that the choice was wrong – we must continue to search for the right half.

Surveys of married couples confirm that high standards help to strengthen the union, if the spouses promptly address emerging issues, discussing them openly and without reservations. Couples who directly express claims to each other (even if it comes to scandals) and together find a way out of the situation call their relationship happy. Those, whose mutual affection declines over the years, admit that they avoid discussions about everyday difficulties (money, children, sex, etc.) or get off with sarcastic remarks. As psychologists write, the phrase “Look, I’m very upset, and that’s why …” is much more inspiring to develop mutual understanding than the caustic “Of course you can’t understand” or “I didn’t expect anything else.”

Polls have identified an interesting feature that claims to be the “relationship killer”. Her name is passive aggression.

High standards are great if you can live up to them without forgetting the benefits of constructive dialogue. But if you are not sure that you are ready to admit his / her desires / mistakes, it is better to lower expectations right away.

People who believe in personal growth tend to view disagreements as an opportunity to get closer by solving problems together. However, this format is fraught with errors. The conviction that love is work prompts some couples to invest energy for years in reanimating a hopeless union, instead of finally scattering and breathing freely.

In addition to this, psychologists advise you to master a win-win tactic: treat your partner as your best friend. It turns out that couples whose relationships are based on strong friendships in addition to attraction are remarkable for their loyalty and openness (which also means good sex). Research confirms that understanding in such couples only grows over the years, and the chances of separation are fading. And in some ways it looks like a duet of kindred souls, but the reasons for harmony are not in magic or fate, but in trust, love and care.