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Are You Sure About What You Are Looking for in a Relationship?

what are you looking for in a relationship

We all have preconceived notions about what we need and want from a relationship, but sometimes what we think we want isn’t what makes us happy.

No two relationships are the same. Neither is what two people are looking for in a relationship. Sometimes what we think we want ends up being the very thing that is the worst for us. Opposites attract, but that means nothing about their ability to stay together happily ever after. If you think you know what you want in a relationship, you should think about what your preconceived notions of a happy relationship are.

22 questions that’ll give you the answers you need

What are you looking for in a relationship really? Before you start looking for your ideal mate, ask yourself some specific questions about what makes you happy and what you expect in a relationship. These are the 22 best questions to ask yourself to determine what it is you really want in a relationship.

#1 Do you think a relationship is a partnership, or two people sharing space? How close do you think two people should be in a relationship? Do they share everything or only those things that they need to? If you are someone who wants to be involved in every aspect and your partner is not, it can leave you feeling lonely, as if the other person is being secretive. [Read: How to give space to each other without drifting apart]

#2 Do you want to have traditional roles? You may want to climb the corporate ladder, or you may want to stay home and run the household. We all have ideas about the way relationships should operate and what each partner’s job is within it. If you are more traditional, and he wants you to be the bread winner, it may spell trouble in paradise. [Read: Types of feminism – Can’t we all just agree to disagree?]

#3 Are you someone who wants your own time? If you are someone who wants to hang out and share time only when it is convenient for you, but your significant other thinks you should spend every waking moment together, that is going to cause a lot of friction. An independent person and a dependent person simply don’t meld well together.

#4 Are you all about sharing or do you like to keep things separate? If you want to keep your money and financial decisions separate, but your significant other is all about combining resources, it may come across as selfish or like you are keeping your distance. Make sure you are both on the same page when it comes to combining finances or keeping them to yourself. [Read: 20 questions you HAVE to ask each other before getting married]

#5 Lovey-dovey is all good at first, but are you looking for a PDA-display relationship? After a while, kissing in public may not be what you think a mature relationship is. Of course, when you start out you want to be as close as possible no matter where you are. As you mature, you might start to feel there is a time and place for PDA.

Understand what you both want from physical closeness in a relationship, or one may end up feeling stupid and the other rejected.

#6 Does it matter how much money they make? If you think their minimum wage job is just a stepping stone, but they think it is their life’s achievement, this can pose a real problem. Don’t assume they want anything more for themselves than what they have now or that they are ambitious enough to move ahead unless they have told you so.

#7 Do you want someone to rely on you or be independent? Some people like dependence while others think they can handle things on their own and still be together. Do you want to be the type of couple making decisions together and leaning on one another, or the type that does things to care just for themselves?

#8 Will you want to make joint decisions or go it alone? Do you want to check with them before financing your dream car, or drive home and show it off after the purchase is made? To some people, making major decisions without discussion feels like you don’t care about their opinion, or that you are operating all on your own. Make sure your decisions are yours if that is what you want. [Read: 10 decisions you should never let your partner make for you]

#9 Who should be the disciplinarian if you have children? Good cop and bad cop only works when one wants to be each role. If you are both too stringent, then there could be a power play. If you are both too lenient, you may have a house out of control. If you should have children together, what roles do you think each should take on?

#10 Is family important to you? Do you want to spend the holidays flying home to be with mom and grandma, or are you a less sentimental, “It is just another day out of the year” type of person? Remember, whoever you marry, you marry their family too. If you aren’t the big family type, it may make you miserable to have family picnics once a month. [Read: 6 practical ways to *put up* deal with difficult in-laws]

#11 Who should wear the pants in the family? Who has the ultimate word in the house? If you are a traditional person and believe one person should steer the ship, then finding someone who agrees with you is very important. After all, you can’t have two captains unless that is something you agree upon early on.

#12 Are you a saver or a live in the moment? Spendthrifts and tightwads normally don’t make for a great union. If you think you don’t care about the spending habits in your relationship, think again. It becomes a lot more important when you go to fill your gas tank, and your significant other has spent the monthly take-home on a Gucci handbag.

#13 Do you want to save for retirement or YOLO? If you believe you don’t need nice things now, but want a nest egg, you aren’t going to have a successful relationship with someone who believes saving for a rainy day is silly. People who save and those who live in the moment are inherently different in many ways, not just money matters.

#14 How much time do you want to spend together? Are you a guys’ night out, or a ladies’ weekend? If only one of you thinks that vacation and spending time away is a good idea, it may cause a lot of resentment and hurt feelings. If you want a guy who is going to give up his frolicking days for you, make it clear upfront and find someone who is willing to. [Read: 15 reasons why most couples get bored with their relationship]

#15 Do you want someone who thinks you are hotter than them? Having someone chase you around like a puppy idolizing you is very flattering at first. If they follow you around forever and always think you are someone fantastic, it can become overwhelming very soon. People who adore you may overestimate your importance and downplay their own. That can be very smothering and get old real fast. [Read: 5 big reasons why loving someone too much kills the love really fast]

#16 Do you want to play together or do your own thing? When you go away, do you want to spend the time perusing historical sights, or do your own thing? Some couples like to play together; some like to meet up after the play is done. Make sure you know which one you are before making a commitment. Yes, it really is a big deal.

#17 Are you looking for a long-term love or more casual time waster? If you are looking for a long-term relationship and they are looking for casual sex, don’t try to convince yourself that you can live being an accessory, or that they will change. People don’t change, and if you want something real and lasting, you have to be honest up front. If they can’t commit, you have to move along instead of beating yourself up trying to change their mind.

#18 Do you want to have a relationship based on sex or one where friendship rules? Are you all about the chemistry or about the friendship? If you want to have a purely sexual relationship, but they want you to be there to support them and hold their hand during the difficult parts, then you don’t want the same things out of life. It is best to recognize that before you get in any deeper. [Read: 50 relationship questions to test your compatibility instantly]

#19 Do you really want a sensitive guy? Most girls say that they want a sensitive guy, but can we be honest? There is nothing more unattractive than a guy who cries more often than we do. Be sure if you want someone who is highly-sensitive and has more of a feminine touch, if that is really what you want. Often, we find that to become very irritating and somewhat unattractive in a mate.

#20 Are you really looking for a bad guy? If you think that you want a “bad guy” to keep you interested, you may want to reexamine that. A bad guy is only good when he is a bad guy to everyone but you. Sometimes we think a bad guy can be changed and will be a good guy to just us. That is probably not going to happen. Do you really want to be treated badly forever?

#21 Do you want someone who only listens? We all want someone to listen to what we have to say, but if all they do is listen and are your “yes, person,” then it can feel more like they simply don’t care.

Do you want someone who is going to allow you to wallow or someone who is going to bring out the best in you? We want someone to love us unconditionally, but even if you are an ass? Or do you want someone who treats you honestly when you need it? [Read: 23 types of relationships to clearly define your love life]

#22 Do you want a stay-at-home partner? Who doesn’t think it would be awesome to have someone stay home and take care of our every whim? The idea of someone waiting at the door with our slippers and dinner on the table can be very alluring until it happens day after day. Be careful what you think you want from someone. If they do nothing but wait on you hand and foot, what could they possibly bring to the table at the end of the day but a warm dinner?

A relationship should be about bringing out the best in each other, making each other feel safe and secure, and loving unconditionally, but there are all sorts of ways to find the perfect balance for you.

[Read: 12 real signs of true love in a relationship]

Make sure you are realistic and think through what you think you want and what you need in a relationship.

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Julie Keating
Julie Keating

A writer isn’t born, but created out of experiences. No lack of subject matter, my life reads more like fiction than anything that could have been imagined...

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