So many of my friends are in the dating process, and let me tell you I know how rough it can be! It’s a time of lots of self-doubt, confusion, self-discovery, and working on yourself and on relationships. I have seen my friends meet and get married to really awesome people, and I have seen other friends be with people who don’t treat them well, and leave them hurt.
So it’s time to stop beating around the bush, it’s time for some real talk.
This was my “list” of sorts, for figuring out of someone was worth more of my time and commitment. You may not think these are applicable to you, and that’s your thing! But for most people I know, these 7 questions can save lots of time and heartache.
1. Do they put God first? Yes, even before you. For me, Randy always puts God first, and that is the number 1 thing that has made our marriage happy and healthy. For us, God is an equal partner in our relationship. We make our decisions with him helping us, we grow our relationship around our relationship to Him.
2. Do they make you want to be a better person? A good relationship isn’t about being content, it’s about always working and wanting to be better. Now, this doesn’t mean that they make you feel bad about yourself. It’s the perfect balance of them loving you, flaws and all, but also helping you see the best version of yourself, and wanting to be that person.
3. Do they make you feel safe? Are you safe to have opinions, safe to say no, safe in your own skin, safe in your own beliefs, safe physically and spiritually and mentally and emotionally? This is a tough evaluation, but being in a relationship and eventually being married means that you are the most vulnerable you have ever been. The person you end up with won’t always be perfect, but they will always work their hardest to make sure you feel safe.
4. Do they get along with friends and family? Now, your partner may not always get along perfectly with these people, and that’s OK. But if most of the important people in your life are seeing a problem, it’s a good time to evaluate.
5. Do they keep secrets? Whether it’s about a person they’ve dated, a mistake from their past, activities with their friends, or other things, secrets can be a huge red flag. Now, it’s not always necessary to dredge up every past experience, but if you ask, and they won’t tell you, it’s important to understand why.
6. Do they encourage you in your activities? Do they come to your game or show, do they encourage you to go to your church or family gathering? Do they ever discourage you or make you feel like your activities are stupid? If they do, it will only get worse the longer you’re together. You deserve someone who will always support you in your dreams, your routines, who won’t make you feel stupid or silly for wanting or participating in something. And if they don’t understand your passion, they’ll ask about it and at the very least, respect it.
7. Are you happy? This evaluation is SO hard to do. Because we often mistake contentment, satisfaction, or pleasure for happiness. Real and true happiness is something you are positive about. For me, it was the feeling that I could quite literally do anything with Randy by my side. Of course, getting married or progressing a relationship can come with cold feet or uncertainty, but for me any jitters were always swallowed up in the understanding that I was so happy. It was the certainty that he would never try and hurt me, that he was proud of me, that he respected me, and that he would do anything to continue to help me be happy.
Hope I’m not sounding too preachy over here, I just know how incredibly hard it can be. I consider myself so lucky to have found someone who makes relationships and marriage so fun, and treats me like a queen.
Best of luck for those of you who are looking for the one, it will all work out in the end!