1. You’re friends.
Whether you met a week or 10 years ago, romantic relationships should be based on friendship. Friendship isn’t about putting your best foot forward or impressing anyone; it’s about being honest about who you really are—things that are very important if you’re going to progress into something deeper.
Relationships based on friendship are casual in their intimacy. They’re not always about candle-lit dinners or string quartets. They’re about stressful mornings, mundane evenings, and everything in between. If you come home looking forward to snuggling on a couch with your special someone in spite of the fact that he forgot to buy the eggs you asked him to, then what you have is golden.
2. You have your regular share of arguments.
Arguments are a normal occurrence in any relationship. Don’t believe other people who say that their love lives are awesome since they never butt heads with their partners. Real couples fight, and those who don’t may have serious problems. Arguments prove that the two of you have individual opinions and beliefs, and that you just don’t say “yes” just to please the other. What’s important is always managing to come to a consensus. Doing so strengthens any relationship, and if you manage to always meet halfway, then you’re in a healthy relationship.
3. You rarely, if not never, bring up past faults.
Bringing up past faults is a huge no-no. Fights should only focus on the matter on hand, and should not deviate back to something that has already been resolved a long time ago. If you and your partner have learned to forgive and forget, then you have it good.
4. You give each other space.
Yes, it’s great to be with one another, but giving each other space is also important. Space allows you to enjoy yourself in your own time, without having to think about any girlfriend or wife duties that you may have. It’s healthy to recharge once in a while so that you can share more of yourself with your partner. If you both understand the significance of being apart, then you’re in the right place.
5. You have your own set of friends.
Having common friends to hang out with as a couple is good. It gives you a chance to be with other people without alienating one another. However, that doesn’t mean that you’ll forget about the friends you’ve had back when you were both still single. It’s a must to have a set of friends that you have separate experiences with. It makes you grow into a richer, more independent person, and it helps you bring more to the table with regard to your relationship. If you value being with other people and you accept that you both have different crowds, then you’re pretty much prepared to be in it for the long haul.