HOW TO HAVE A LASTING RELATIONSHIP
Most people choose the wrong partner, then wonder why they break up in a few years; or worse, are unhappy for decades in a bad relationship! If you do everything recommended in earlier chapters, you have a good chance: Create a Wish List; Pare the Wish List down to a Non-Negotiable List; Go to the right places to meet people; Initiate Contact; Interrogate your partner BEFORE falling in love.
The most important think to look for is COMPATIBILITY. While it’s true that opposites attract, they rarely stay together. The excitement of the opposite sex is that they are opposite. But once the excitement wanes, which is the normal progression of most relationships, if there is no compatibility there is no happiness. Good sex can mask a bad relationship, but eventually you have to take a pause from physical interaction and find out if you are really right for each other.
Compatibility should be in two primary areas:
1. Values. For example, If you are religious and your partner is not, the relationship is unlikely to succeed. Or if your religious values are opposite each other, things are not going to work long-term. Political values can also be important. A conservative Republican may not get along well with a progressive Democrat.
2. Communication style. Research reveals that you have to have the same communication
style to be compatible. There are three styles: Avoiders (who do not discuss disagreements, but rather sweep them under the carpet); Compromisers (who discuss disagreements calmly and work out a solution that works for both); Fighters (who fight like cats and dogs but then kiss and make up and have mad passionate sex). Mixing these three styles does not work! If you ask most people which type they prefer, most prefer Compromisers. However, if you are a Fighter, you will never be happy with a Compromiser. Fighters should choose Fighters. Just don’t forget to duck! Likewise, Avoiders will never be happy with a Compromiser. The Compromiser will want to discuss their problems; the Avoiders will say, “What problems?” It just doesn’t work.