Love is a wonderful thing, whether it's love between you and your family, you and your friends, or you and a romantic partner. However, love can have a less than the beautiful side as well, and not all the ways that we express our love to others or the way that we receive love from others are necessarily healthy. When love becomes unhealthy, it can turn into something dangerous that can pose a huge risk to our overall mental health and our way of life. That's why it's important to find out how to love somebody healthily and how to make sure that you aren't allowing unhealthy love practices within your household. You want to be able to have relationships of all types that are healthy and happy for both of you, and that will often require you to do a little research to see if you can identify any unhealthy love practices that may be going on in your relationship and how you can set yourself up for healthy love successfully. If this is you, take a look at the guide below to learn more about healthy love practices that you can implement into your relationship.
Loving another person may be natural for some but may be difficult for others. Here are some tips that will allow you to love your partner better the right way.
Be Supportive of Your Partner
The first thing that you need to cultivate a great relationship with your partner is to support them. You need to understand that the person you love is an individual with their hopes, dreams, and plans. When someone is in a relationship where their partner is constantly disregarding or belittling their dreams, it will certainly appear as though you do not love them enough to allow them to try to achieve their dreams and goals. Being someone who loves them means that you need to help them carry out those things and support their efforts. Encourage them even when they don't feel like they're capable of doing something themselves. When your partner is working their way through school and feels like they're failing, it's time for you to help push them and encourage them. The same is true with a job or with anything in their lives. Support them and be there to help.
Respect Personal Space
Having a healthy relationship means that you and your partner need to have your personality. It means that you need to understand that sometimes they may need to be alone or spend time with friends without you there. Hovering over your partner all the time, refusing to let them go anywhere alone, or otherwise trying to manage their time is not a healthy aspect of any relationship and can cause friction and cause the end of the relationship over time. No one wants to be in a relationship with someone who is too clingy and unable to lead their own lives. A relationship doesn't mean that you need to be together all the time. Just as you have your identity as a couple, you have your identity on your own, and that is just as important.
Trust, Trust, Trust!
An extremely important part of relationships can trust one another. That means not needing to be with your partner all the time or not needing to check their phone or their emails or know every single detail about their life. If that's the case, it means that you don't trust them, and if there's no trust, it's hard to make a relationship work. Also, a lack of trust when someone has not yet violated that trust could indicate that you are carrying past trauma or insecurities into your current relationship, which needs to be taken care of as soon as possible to prevent any further damage from taking place. If they have violated your trust, you must be able to work through it with your partner to move on. Whether they've actually done something that violated your trust or you have difficulty trusting anyone, it's going to cause tension and trouble in your relationship.
Treat Your Partner As Your Equal
Do you treat your partner like they are your equal? Whether they make as much money as you, have as good of a job as you, or anything else, they are your equal. They should always be treated with respect, and their opinion on something should matter just as much as yours. If you don't feel that you can treat them as equal and show them that level of respect, this is not the right partnership for you, or you may need to seek professional help to understand better why this is important for both of you. Regardless of what factors may lead you to believe otherwise, your partner is on this journey beside you, not above or below.
Be Honest With Your Partner
Being honest with your partner is a crucial aspect of a relationship. You need to talk with them about the things that are happening in your life, but honesty is about much more than that. It's also about telling them where you were last night or what you think about the activities you both engage in. Being honest helps you both to feel more connected, and it helps you to improve your relationship over time as well. If you have problems being honest, it means that you are either trying to hide things that you are currently doing that could damage the relationship, or you are hiding things that have happened in the past that either tie into the relationship now or are simply things that you don't want to talk about. If it is the former or something from the past related to the relationship, it is better to open up and be honest with your partner. If there are things you struggle to talk about, you may want to consider counseling as a way to process those things and learn to be more vulnerable with your partner.
Communication Properly and Effectively
Talk with your partner frequently. Whether it's about the things you did today or those stories from your childhood, or anything at all, talking to your partner is an important step in building your relationship and continuing to make it stronger. If you don't feel like talking to your partner about things that happen in your life is important, then it's a sign that maybe you aren't as close as you want to be. This is a person that you are potentially going to spend the rest of your life with (that's the hope anyway), so you want to make sure you are excited to talk to them about things.
Also, it is important to make sure that you have effective communication. When a fight comes along, how do you two handle it? Do you shout at each other and end the fight by storming off, or do you two finish the fight by resolving the issue and coming up with a plan to ensure that the issue never comes up again? If you are unable to resolve issues, it can become hard to prove your love to someone. It is important to make sure that you learn effective communication before any major issues arising so that you and your partner are prepared for any argument that comes up.
Make Sure to Have Fun and Focus on the Positives
With all this talk about honesty and trust, and communication, it's also important that you and your partner are having fun. Your definition of fun will be different from that of other people, but it's something that matters to you, so make sure you're getting out there with your partner and enjoying yourself. Go to the movies, the park, the museum, or anywhere that the two of you enjoy, and don't worry about what other people think. If your best friend says that going to the museum isn't a fun date, but you and your partner enjoy it, then that's what matters.
You can make sure that fun and affection are allowed to grow and prosper throughout your relationship by making sure to schedule regular date nights that you and your partner constantly make sure to honor. Additionally, you can come up with a list of things that you have always wanted to do and then slowly work on that list as you go out and do things together. If you put your heart and soul into it, it isn't hard to keep the fun and love going.
While it may seem strange to talk about fighting when we're talking about healthy love, it's a natural part of the relationship. You and your partner will not agree on everything, and two people who are together for the majority of their days are guaranteed to find something to fight about. There will be times when you don't want to do the same things or don't have the same opinion, and sometimes those disagreements will turn into an argument. The important thing is to keep your focus on what the argument is actually about and not draw in other issues that may have come up at a different time. If you're arguing about where to go for dinner, this is not the time to bring up how your partner never empties the dishwasher, for example.
If you and your partner seem to be having trouble creating a healthy relationship or knowing what it means, talking to a professional is a great step. You can reach out to the professionals at ReGain to find out more about what you could be doing and even start your sessions toward improving your relationship. You'll be able to connect completely online without having to worry about visiting a psychiatrist's office in the first place, which makes it a whole lot more convenient and comfortable for you. Learn more about what healthy love entails and what it will take to keep that healthy love going by connecting with your personal relationship counselor!
“With Cassandra’s help, we’ve been able to bring our relationship to a new, healthier, and much happier level, working through painful situations, growing as individuals and as a couple, and with tools to stay on this path. She’s very responsive, and it has been great to have her facilitate our messaging through the app all week. I highly recommend Cassandra. She’s skilled, supportive, and down-to-earth. We feel totally comfortable with her.”
“My girlfriend and I have been working with Alison for about four months now and with her help and guidance we have strengthened our relationship ten fold. Her communication style is amazing and she really strives to make the best of our time with one another. If you’re looking for a counselor you can put your faith in with the whole experience, she’s the one to go to.”
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I learn to love someone?
Whether it is possible to learn to love someone is not something we can be sure about. Love is a feeling that triggers various emotional and behavioral expressions. In the past, people whose marriages were arranged could learn to become fond of their spouses. The Western approach to love is a kind of love that is left to chance or fate. There is a belief that a person cannot choose who they fall in love with. It is possible, though, that we cannot stop ourselves from falling in love with a person, but it might be possible to learn to love a person. You can love people you don’t want to love, but you might not be able to love someone you want to love.
Your ideal love interest is put together by a series of experiences, proclivities, preferences, and biases. When you shed some of these things, you might become more open to the idea of loving someone who might not exactly fit your ideal. This does not mean that you will fall in love with the person though, there are some emotions we cannot conjure up, and love is one of them.
However, some studies show that love can be regulated. People can learn to devote themselves to a particular person. To see past their flaws and remain loyal to them. They can develop love languages that express affection. They can choose to act out certain behavioral and emotional expressions that stem from love; however, they cannot choose to fall in love with a person. Research shows that love regulation is effective for sustaining healthy relationships. Suppressing emotion is much easier than igniting it. So whether you can learn to love someone depends on you and the person in question.
How do we show love?
Love is an intense and powerful emotion. It can be overwhelming sometimes, especially when we are unable to express it. Pop culture has made the act and the language of love something that needs to be ostentatious and flamboyant—a firework display, dinner on the Eiffel, a flash mob, or a room full of flowers.
In reality, the expression of real love has to be done within three dimensions. These dimensions are:
Love can be felt powerfully but communicated poorly. To effectively express your love, you have to express love within these three dimensions.
The spoken and written language are effective ways to articulate feelings and emotions. Telling someone you love them is a clear and direct way to show love; sometimes, it can be more effective than physical touch. It reminds them that they are special to you and is also a form of endearment, in this case, a romantic form of endearment.
Saying “I love you” is not the only way to show love through words. You can do things such as giving compliments or providing soothing and encouraging words when they are stressed. Speaking words of appreciation and gratitude is another powerful way to show love. You could also develop love languages that increase the intimacy in your relationship.
We can express love and appreciation by performing romantic, kind, and helpful gestures. This could mean anything from physical touch to a nice meal or even doing something that will make their life easier, such as running a hot bath for them or doing the dishes. Physical touch communicates love powerfully and intimately. Gestures that are based on physical touch are powerful ways of showing love. When you perform a kind gesture for your love interest, you make them feel loved and appreciated.
Everyone loves a nice gift. It is also pleased to share lovely things with the people we love. By purchasing or making a gift for someone, we show that person how much they are worth. Spending time and money to get something for someone indicates that you value that person, so a good way to show love is to give gifts to the person you love.
How do you love someone deeply?
The deepest expressions of love come from a desire to see your love interest happy. These are the moments when love is most deeply expressed. If you want to find true love, you have to develop a desire to see your significant other happy and to be happy with them. When we tie our joy with another person’s, it drives us to make them feel loved.
So next time you hug or embrace your significant other, make it about them. Say the words that will spark happiness in them and make them feel loved. When you plan a date, go for the date idea that will most effectively express how you feel about them. Love is shown deeply when two people celebrate each other. Celebrate your significant other in all the little ways and big ways that you can. Special ways of communicating affection to your significant other are called love languages. Discovering the love languages in your relationship can make it more loving and intimate.
Is love a choice or feeling?
There is no simple way to answer this question. Love itself can manifest as a feeling, as behavioral and emotional expression, as an action, etc. When you fall in love, it is not a choice; rather, it is an overwhelming feeling of attraction and affection towards a specific person. However, this does not mean that you cannot choose to love someone. When you choose to love someone, you are more concerned with the actions, thoughts, and behaviors that express the term “love.” A person who has chosen to love someone will act lovingly towards that person, irrespective of whether they feel love. Because this is a choice and not a result of coercion or unavoidable circumstances, it can also be love. Whether love is a choice or a feeling depends on what you mean when you use the word “love.”
So the term “love” can be a feeling as well as a choice. But love cannot rely on feelings alone; you can easily start out feeling that you’re in love with someone and end up disliking them after some time. However, the best way to love would be both as a feeling and a choice.
What is a good relationship like?
Before getting into a relationship, we would have created an ideal version of that relationship. No one wants an unhealthy relationship, and no one likes breakups. So how can a person ensure their relationship stays healthy? What does a good relationship look like?
No relationship is perfect, but all healthy relationships share some specific qualities. These qualities are: