Have you ever wondered if your expectations in a relationship are too high or even too low? We all begin a relationship with expectations of being treated with kindness, love, affection, dignity, respect and so much more. But is that the reality? This week’s Coffee Bar Tuesday, we focused on what to do if your expectations are not met and how to manage them in a relationship?
Your expectations in a relationship tell more about the other person and how serious the relationship is. Your expectations also answers questions such as is the person you are dating really the one? Is the person you’re dating serious about you, or should you leave the long-term relationship you’ve held onto. Your expectation should not tolerate any emotional or physical abuse. In the end, you expect your partner to be loyal and make a life together.
With the discussion being led by young people who are usually the culprits of expecting more than the other party can deliver or fulfill. We started by asking, what do you expect in a relationship? Different people with different expectations, some of the expectations pointed out were respect, honesty, caring, love, empathy, support, someone being there for you, physical intimacy, clear communication, friendship among others.
A participant highlighted how expectations can shape dynamics, influence tone, and cultivate a sense of safety and support within a relationship. Other participants felt that having to lower expectations will protect you from any misunderstandings or conflicts. It was also pointed out that any relationship with zero expectations is not a relationship but more of a friendship.
Setting healthy and realistic expectations can keep you and your partner happy. It is unfair to burden your partner with too much than they can deliver. However, it is also good to have a few expectations that do not harm your relationship in any way. We have seen people losing track of being diagnosed with mental illness and disorders as a result of relationship break ups.
“Most crucial expectation from my partner is support. Nowadays, we are in a relationship with someone but can’t even count the number of places or situations that they have helped you.” Participant Said
It is only human to have certain expectations in a relationship but managing them is where the problem starts from. When it comes to managing expectations, the only way to go about it is through open and honest communication. Here are some of tips on how to manage expectations:
- Communication and support: Good and clear communication is essential in any relationship. Being able to share what you expect from each other will help in understanding each other’s needs and building a strong bond.
- Lowering your expectations: Having less or manageable expectations will save you from heartbreaks, emotional breakdown and even mental illness. Majority of us expect so much without thinking about the other person.
- Someone with the same energy; Relationships should be enjoyable, and partners should make time for fun, adventure, and new experiences together. This cannot happen if you two don’t have the same energy towards some things.
- Have reasonable expectations: You should not hold your partner or your relationship to unrealistic expectations. Your expectations should match what you can also deliver. I.e. It may be detrimental to the relationship to expect your partner to spend all their free time with you.
You will build a healthy relationship If both of you are open and willing to discuss your expectations from each other. You should be honest with your partner about the expectations you can meet and those that you will need more time to meet and that’s how you build a relationship together. Remember, every relationship is unique and individual expectations may vary. This is not professional advice but advice from people who have/are in relationships. See you on Tuesday.