couple face to face

Can couples manage to keep healthy dating relationships even after a few decades of living together? How do people in healthy dating relationships manage to stay compatible for the long run? Simply put, it takes the same people who started the relationship in the first place to also keep it going. Yes, there are therapists and caring family members around to keep the couple on the right track, yet ultimately, the decisions that count will have to come from the couple. In fact, too much input from others may even prove to be detrimental in the long run. Also, people who can barely hold on to their relationships are more susceptible to wrong turns and confusion, which may lead to dead ends, especially when too many people provide their two cents of input.

Here are 5 secrets to keeping healthy dating relationships:

1. Always say what you mean. The importance of honest communication cannot be denied. Start making it a habit to never tell white lies, and eventually you'll learn how to be completely honest to your partner. Everyone has closets full of secrets, and sometimes, it is impossible to tell someone everything about you in a short period of time. However, it does get easier as time passes; especially if you promise never to close your doors to someone you love. Be honest with your partner right from the beginning.

couple on stomach

2. Don't let stress get the better of you. Healthy dating relationships are romantic, but romance may not always possible. Stress at work and at home may devour every single second of your day, however, you can do something to keep the flame burning. Never go to bed mad and always kiss your partner good night every day to remind each other about your loving relationship.

3. Make plans together as a team - When you plan your vacations, outings or birthday parties, make sure you tell your partner about them. Respect your partner's time and keep each other posted. Ask your partner to participate in the decision making process, doing so will communicate your affection and respect.

4. Discuss expectations openly - You simply cannot ask of someone to meet your expectations if he or she has no idea what they are. Couples who keep their expectations hidden do not have close relationships. Remember that ordinary people do not have the gift of mind reading. Healthy dating relationships are not smooth sailing all the time. Although they should represent a safe haven, they can be pitfalls and emotional traps that create stress. Find ways to get over these things together to make your relationship work.

couple sitting down

5. Support each other's career - When couples share the same profession it can create a competitive atmosphere at home. Discussions about who's earning more and who's working harder should be avoided to preserve harmony. If your partner gets promoted, show your happiness. Try not to let career and finances ruin your relationship. Many don't understand that once you commit to someone, you share everything. To really thrive as a united couple, success and failure need to be shared.

Above all, maintaining healthy dating relationships always require patience, grace and understanding. Most people may not know how to make a relationship last, but everyone intuitively knows the basics of loving another person, which is a great starting point.