The Four Horsemen: Communication Styles to Avoid in Relationships
In any relationship, it is crucial to steer clear of four communication styles that can be detrimental. These styles should be avoided at all costs to maintain a healthy and successful relationship.
Self-Improvement Leads to Problem Solving
Consider the amount of time it takes for you and your significant other to truly understand each other. Is it a month, six months, or even a year? The popular “three-month rule” that has gained traction on platforms like TikTok suggests that this timeframe is a reliable test for determining the potential success or failure of a couple. However, while this rule offers some guidance, experts believe that waiting before fully committing to a new partner is wise.
Cecille Ahrens, a licensed clinical social worker, acknowledges the need for a more concrete guideline. However, she emphasizes that self-awareness plays a significant role in assessing a relationship’s viability. If signs of dysfunction or abuse are evident, there is no need to wait the full 90 days before ending the relationship.
What Does Three Months Reveal?
Three months provides a significant window of time to understand someone’s idiosyncrasies, such as how they treat others or their relationship with friends and family. It allows for a comprehensive evaluation of factors that contribute to the potential for a long-term and fulfilling relationship. However, the effectiveness of this timeframe ultimately depends on an individual’s ability to process and recognize what they observe.
Ahrens suggests that one’s own mental and emotional well-being is a crucial aspect when determining if a relationship is healthy. Without self-awareness, three months alone won’t be sufficient. It is essential to recognize red flags and evaluate whether a relationship has a healthy dynamic.
Beware of “Quick Involvement”
While it can be tempting for relationships to progress rapidly, this is not always advantageous. Laura Petiford, a licensed marriage and family therapist, warns against succumbing to initial feelings and moving too quickly, as it can lead to negative experiences.
Petiford further explains that an individual’s desire for an expedited connection may be a sign of potential abuse. Abusive personalities avoid prolonged periods of getting to know someone as they cannot sustain positive behavior over time. Therefore, they seek to accelerate the relationship. It is crucial to be attentive to signs of physical, mental, and emotional abuse, as well as other warning signs like disrespecting boundaries, inconsistency, lack of self-respect, and flakiness.
Be Open to Your Own Relationship Speed
The three months spent with a new partner are not solely about understanding them; it is also an opportunity for self-discovery. Ahrens explains that one may learn things about themselves they were previously unaware of through a new perspective or positive experiences.
It is important to contemplate what “taking it slowly” means for you personally. This may involve postponing certain aspects, such as sex or exclusivity, and refraining from introducing the person to friends or deeply involving them in your life. By allowing the relationship to develop naturally without external influences, accurate judgment can be made regarding the potential suitability of a partner.
When unsure, it is wise to take the time to evaluate if the person you met on day one is someone you genuinely want to continue being with in the days that follow. Pragmatism should guide this decision, knowing that love and the search for it require delicate consideration. Even those who take their time may realize, beyond the 90 days, that they are not compatible.
Food for Thought: Are You Unintentionally Damaging Your Relationship?
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