Tips Why it is important to define your relationship

If the labels change, or if you feel differently and need to redefine the relationship, go right ahead and redefine it.

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Happy couple (Shutterstock ) play

Happy couple (Shutterstock)

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The title sounds like a broken old school record that keeps playing over and again. Yet, it is important to define your relationship.

If the labels change, or if you feel differently and need to redefine the relationship, go right ahead and redefine it. If you let unanswered questions hang around your relationship and uncertainties fester, it is only a recipe for heartbreak.

What Are We?

This is one of the most difficult things to ask in a growing friendship. There is usually the hilarious “we are nothing but pencil in the hands of the creator” response; which is not funny at all if you are the enquirer. Even though there is a 50-50 chance of it ending badly, it gives both of you an opportunity to reveal what you feel about eachother. At the end of this conversation, if both parties are honest, the couple should be able to put a tag on their relationship, have reasonable demands of each other, and hold each partner accountable.

READ ALSO: 14 ways Ghanaians can do better at saying No

What Are We Doing?

This should clear any doubts about whether emotions should get involved or not. The answers can range from;

“We are just hanging out”

“It is just sex”

“We kissed once”

“It does not mean anything”

To

“I love you”

“We are getting to know each other”

“This is important to me”

“It’s not just sex”

The answer will dictate the next step for the relationship and ensure that both parties are on the same page. It will also afford each partner an opportunity to decide whether they want to go on with whatever they are doing, or opt out.

How Far Is Too Far?

If you are in a non-committed relationship, you should set boundaries on how far is comfortable enough. If you are close friends with a married person, you both should agree on how close you two can get before it is too close for comfort. If you two are single and ready to mingle but have not committed to each other, you can agree on having casual sex and walking away without expectations or keeping sexual intimacy out of the equation while spending time with each other. It prevents the infantile “you took advantage of me” tantrums

Where Is This Going?

The ideal response to this question for people in relationships should be “to the altar” but you should ask your partner and be clear about it. Many people are in relationships that they do not expect or intend to end in marriage and may be genuinely bewildered when their partners spring the “when should I notify my family” question. You can come to an amicable resolution of the direction of the relationship and make plans on how to get there.

It is a risky thing to assume anything in a relationship. The hurt of your partner telling you they don’t feel the same as you, cannot be compared to the anguish of finding out that you two have been operating on different mindsets about your relationship for long. The conversation can be unnerving and a bit uncomfortable to initiate but every couple should have it as often as possible. Feelings and expectations change, so do people; as such, it is important to keep communication lines opens and keep adjusting and updating the status of your relationship.

Author is Yaa Amponsah

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