Building a Relationship That Last

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Long lasting relationships don’t have to be a thing of the past…

Laying the right foundation for a relationship will set the pace and tone of your romance for weeks, months, and even years ahead. A solid foundation of trust, loyalty, honesty and respect will uplift you through the good times and support you in the tough times. Classic relationship rules like respecting one another’ families and being friends first can lead to long-lasting commitment and love. Let’s take a look at what makes a relationship last and how you can build your relationship to stand the test of time.

Friends First

“The courtships and marriages that are successful are the ‘best friend’ ones,” states Ted Huston, a researcher from the University of Texas that tracked 168 couples over the course of 14 years. “They’re slow and steady and unfold over time.”

While having a hot, passionate sexual connection is a major bonus in any relationship, passions ebb and flow over time and having that deeper bond of friendship is what will see you through the years together.

Slow and Steady Wins the Race

Whirlwind romances can be very exciting, one-night stands can be erotic, and quick courtships may be trendy, but the stuff of lasting love is built on time and patience. In fact, the University of Texas study supports the notion that the most successful marriages involved couples who had slow-moving courtships and entered marriages well aware of each other’s quirks, strengths and challenges.

Stay Connected to Yourself

Having your own life isn’t just good for yourself, but it is good for your relationship, as well. A recent study by Ohio University discovered that men and women who were true to their core beliefs and to themselves felt happier and were in more functional and more positive relationships than those who were not.

“Women often make the huge mistake of giving up their interests to focus on their relationship. In every relationship, there should be ‘you, me and we’. You need those three components in order for both of you to be happy and maintain a healthy body,” states Dr. Gilda Carle, PhD, and author of, Don’t Bet on the Prince.

Treat Your In-Laws Respectfully

Making your partner’s family a priority isn’t just going to win you points with your partner, but it will win you points with your in-laws, too. Inter-family bonding is a very important part of a long-lasting, happy marriage. When there is little or no tension between the families, you and your partner will both rest easy at night. Asking her parents for her hand in marriage will set the tone that you respect family and tradition, which can secure you a good place in their hearts.

“Each person’s family can be a really great support system for a newly married couple. There are bound to be in-law problems in any relationship…but it’s important not to let resentments build up over time,” states Dr. Carle.

Money and family are the two big problems that most couples face, so diffuse any issues with your in-laws before those little mole hills turn into mountains.

Laugh Often and Share Interests

Laughing can not only bond us and bring us closer, but it can help get us through the rough times, as well. A sense of humor is sexy and laughter can relieve stress, as well.

A study at the University of Denver found that the more time couples spend together having fun, free of familial, financial or other stress triggers, the happier they will be over time.

“The average couple spends 10 minutes a day talking to each other, usually about chores, finances, and kids. It’s essential to do things that you enjoy together, just like when you were dating,” believes Dr. Carle.

Spending quality time bonding over similar interests can also deepen your bond and create a sense of intimacy within the relationship. Play a sport together, go on daily walks, travel, enjoy theatre or art shows…whatever it is that gets you out the door and enjoying a positive activity together…do it.

After all, the couple that plays together, stays together.