what to expect in a relationship

Time is the most precious commodity that you have and the last thing that you want is to waste your time building a relationship with the wrong person. One year is a perfectly respectable amount of time to figure out if you are compatible with your partner. After dating for one year, you should have a strong sense of whether or not you can make your relationship work in the long haul.

But, what should you do if you feel uncertain about your relationship when your one year anniversary rolls around? As I reflect back to who I was and how I was feeling one year ago, I am very surprised when I realize just how much has truly changed in my life. One year can go by in a flash, and if you are not happy about something, it is important to make changes in your life before another year goes by in which you feel frustrated. Here is what you can expect in a relationship after one year.

A strong sense of your partner’s values

One year is plenty of time to find out if your partner’s life goals and values are ones that you respect. I have a friend who, for privacy reasons, I will call Anne. She has been dating her current boyfriend for one year, and although her boyfriend was charming and generous at the beginning of the relationship, Anne has been telling me for months now that her boyfriend’s attitude and behavior are totally different from the initial stages of their relationship.

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I have been encouraging Anne to end the relationship now before she invests more time into it. Anne listens to what I have to say, but she usually ends up breaking up with her boyfriend and then reconciling with him a short time later. Anne’s boyfriend was sweet and easy to get along with at the beginning of the union, but his true personality came through after they had been seeing each other for a few months. What is especially sad is that the man who Anne had previously dated is someone who was similar to Anne’s current guy; charming at first, but then he showcases his rude and dismissive side after he feels more comfortable with a woman.

Knowing their family and social circle

If after one year in a relationship you still have no idea who your love interest spends their time with, that is not normal. By now you should be familiar with your partner’s friends and family members. Even if you have not received an opportunity to meet your partner’s loved ones, you should know the names of the people who mean the most to them. At the very least, you should have been able to speak to your partner’s family members and friends on the telephone if only to say a quick hello and introduce yourself as the current love interest.

If you’ve never met the people who hold special meaning in your partner’s life after one year of being together, then you should re-evaluate your decision to stay in the relationship. Let one year of being together the cut off the mark for you to decide if you want to let things continue as they are, work together to improve your relationship or part your ways and move forward. If your relationship is not satisfying, do your best to avoid living another year of your life in the exact same way you did it last year. Even if things are going well, you should be focusing on improving and enhancing your life.

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Unconditional trust and support

It can be difficult to know if you can trust your mate after only a couple of dates. But after one year of being together, it should be clear to you on whether or not you can rely on each other to be supportive. You will see how your match resolves conflicts, interacts with you, deals with others, and plans for unexpected events. It will also be apparent if you can trust your significant other to be there for you when you need them.

My friend Anne complains to me quite a bit about how rude and unreliable her boyfriend is. Anne told me that she feels that she cannot trust anything her boyfriend says to her because she has caught him lying a few times. Can you relate? Trust is so important in every facet of life. When you cannot trust your partner to pay the bills, watch that movie that he promised to watch with you, and listen to you as you share your emotions, then you probably should not be together.

Some people turn their lives around and become loving, kind, and responsible people to be connected with. After one year of dating, you should have a strong idea on whether or not your partner is proactive, or is the type of person to be stubborn and resistant to making changes. I am very grateful that I am in a different situation than I was one year ago. Sure, there are still more changes that need to be made, but I am super happy that I am not wasting time with the wrong person anymore. Now, I need to concentrate on the right person. Like Anne, I invested a little over a year of my life with Mister Wrong at various times in my life. The lessons that I have learned from those experiences is that I never want one year to go by if I am with the wrong person.  f you need to make a change, do it now. A year from now, you will wish you had started today.

Akua is a Canadian born and raised girl with Caribbean roots. She is a journalist, actress, music teacher, performer, owner and marketer of 3 worldwide dating websites, as well as an independent Pure Romance business owner selling passion products for singles and couples.

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