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How Healthy Is Your Relationship?

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Image credit: photo by Niki Sanders on Unsplash.

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It can be hard to get a gauge on the health of our most intimate relationships. Below is a quiz to see just how healthy your relationship is.

Mark An X For Each Statement You Agree With Below:

___ We argue constructively. 

Some conflict is necessary in relationships. After all, you have two distinct personalities constantly interacting - sparks are bound to fly. But there are productive ways to resolve conflict.

If your arguments stick to the topic at hand, don’t dissolve into insults, come to an end instead of turning into a grudge, and are about listening and being heard instead of being right, your arguments are likely constructive.

___ I feel heard and listened to, and so does my partner. 

The number one complaint couples have about their relationships is a lack of communication.

Do you feel like you are truly being heard - understood and accepted as you are? And do you offer your partner that same openness in return?

___ My partner and I both understand that we are responsible for our own happiness. 

No one can “make” us happy. Our partners can enrich our happiness, but they can’t create it. That’s our own personal responsibility.

Dependence on your partner to provide a sense of happiness for you sets up a vicious cycle of resentment that can be emotionally damaging to both partners.

___ My partner and I have fun together, and laugh a lot. 

Bringing joy to each other - and sharing joy - is key to a healthy relationship, and makes our journeys through life together that much sweeter.

___ I am honest with my partner, and trust that he or she is honest with me. 

Honesty and trust build the foundation of intimacy. Without it, the vulnerability of love is impossible.

___ We make compromises when necessary, and / or appropriate.   

This is often the hardest rule for couples to follow, but one of the most straightforward and important.

Relationships are about give and take. Learning to negotiate and negotiating fairly is key to a healthy relationship.

___ We apologize when necessary or appropriate.

Inevitably, we will hurt our partner’s feelings or do something less than appropriate. Learning to take responsibility and apologize will foster more trust and intimacy, and allow you both to grow together.

Even if you have not said or done anything untoward, if your partner is affected by your actions or words, it is important to apologize. This demonstrates an understanding and expresses compassion for your partner's experience, and that their feelings matter to you.

___ I am relatively sexually satisfied, and can communicate my sexual needs to my partner. He / she feels the same. 

Every couple is vulnerable to hitting sexual road blocks over the years. Sex drive can be affected by both internal factors, such as hormonal changes and depression, or external factors, such as job stress, relationship tension, or a recent loss of a loved one.

What is important is your ability to communicate about sex - your needs, worries, and desires.

___ Both my partner and myself have strong individual identities. 

This means that you both love yourselves, take care of yourselves, and have personal hobbies, goals, and passions.

Relationships are two people held together by their feelings for each other, but that still means they are two people. As one marriage counselor puts it, “There has to be a me within the we.”

___ Both my partner and myself bring positivity into each other’s lives. 

A healthy relationship means sorting through your baggage so you have enough room to accommodate and contribute to someone else’s life.

Something positive could be compassion, love, understanding, and balance. Unresolved issues from your personal past can fester and eat away at this positivity.

___ We support each other and grow together. 

Healthy relationships are like gardens - with nourishment, attention, and enough positive light, two flowers can blossom and grow together.

Check this line if you and your partner encourage each other, offer support, and cheer each other on.

___ My partner and I are both committed to our relationship. 

A healthy relationship is only as good as the sum of its parts.

If both partners aren’t equally invested and dedicated to the health of the relationship, the partnership can’t grow.

___ We do not engage in criticism, contempt, stonewalling, or defensiveness. 

These characteristics are described by marriage expert John Gottman as the Four Horsemen of the relationship apocalypse.

Insults, feeling superior, refusing to communicate emotionally or verbally, or defaulting to defensiveness all inject toxins into the relationship that can cause deep damage to your bond.

___ My partner and I have reasonable expectations for each other. 

What we expect from our partners must match who they are, not who we want them to be. Additionally, our expectations must be clearly communicated and agreed upon by both partners; otherwise resentment, disappointment, and anger may develop.

Constantly comparing them to an ideal standard can build resentment. Instead, compare them to themselves - and focus on their positive traits, instead of their flaws.

___ My partner and I are affectionate, and show appreciation for each other. 

Affection isn’t only physical, but emotional and spiritual as well.

Do you tell your partner that they are beautiful, wonderful, funny, intelligent, and the best omelet maker in the world, on a regular basis? These affirmations foster warmth between you and your significant other.

___ We love each other - most of the time. 

Let’s face it: there are some days where we really can’t stand our partners. For whatever reason, they irritate us to no end. But that doesn’t mean the love is gone; just buried under other feelings.

A realistic and healthy relationship accepts that, though love fluctuates and flows, it doesn’t ever stop being there.

___ Neither my partner nor myself are verbally, emotionally, or physically violent. Neither of us are addicted. 

Addictions and violence are automatic deal breakers in gauging health.

With violence or addiction present, a healthy relationship cannot flourish.

Making Sense of The Quiz Results For You

Tally up the number of checks. The more checks you have, the better the health of your relationship may be. The only exception is if you did not check the last box - under any circumstance, that is not a healthy relationship.

Addictions and abuse are damaging to both people involved, and professional help may be necessary to break the cycle or help you to remove yourself from it.

A poor score on this quiz doesn’t mean your relationship is bad. Any relationship can end up at an unhealthy place. With the help of a couple therapist or marriage counselor, you can start to work through your issues and get to a place of happiness, growth, and warmth - together.

You can anonymously share your results in the comment section below.

Quizzes provided by Nassau Guidance & Counseling are not diagnostic tools. Nothing can take the place of a qualified psychotherapist in helping to understand your relationship. If you’re not feeling happy with your relationship or you would like to enhance it, couples counseling is available. Call us at (516) 221-9494 to get started.

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