Saturday, 5 October 2013


This is a topic I've wanted to talk on for such a long time. And why not if I may ask? With the high rates of divorce cases appearing in the law courts these days, friends becoming enemies, families falling apart, business partners breaking up e.t.c. I think it is quite important we discuss it. I chose to use the word "relationship" as it encompasses a whole lot more than a marriage or sexual relationship. It also involves every kind of relationship that exists; between parents and their children, between friends- male or female, between co-workers and colleagues, bosses and their employees. Because of the vastness of this topic, it will be divided into two parts and any healthy contribution will be appreciated just like when we did with  child abuse vs. child discipline. The second part will be about marriage.

Before I go into what makes a relationship work, we first have to understand what a relationship is. A relationship is a significant connection or similarity between two or more persons or group and their involvement with one another, especially as regards the way they behave toward and feel about one another. It can also be defined as an emotionally close friendship, especially one involving sexual activity. In the family, it is the way in which two or more people are related by birth, adoption or marriage. Every relationship has a beginning, a lifespan and an end. They tend to grow and improve gradually as people get to know each other and become closer emotionally or they gradually deteriorate as people drift apart, move on with their lives and form new relationships with others.


There are two major types of the relationship I'm about to discuss and they are;
  • The interpersonal relationship: An interpersonal relationship is a strong, deep or close association/acquaintance between two or more people that may range in duration from short to long lasting. This association may be based on inference, love, solidarity, regular business interactions or some other type of social commitment. Interpersonal relationships can change continuously during their existence. 
  • The Intimate relationship: An intimate relationship is an interpersonal relationship that involves physical or emotional intimacy. Physical intimacy is characterized by romantic or passionate attachment or sexual activity. Intimate relationships play a central role in the overall human experience. It satisfies the human desire to belong, to love and be loved in return. A couple is the term conferred to two people in an intimate relationship with each other.
  • Acquaintance/ Association: depends on first impressions, physical proximity or previous relationships. It may develop to the next stage or continue as just acquaintances indefinitely.
  • Build up: people begin to trust and care for one another. The need for intimacy and compatibility comes in
  • Continuation: follows commitment and may lead to long lasting relationships even marriage. Trust is very important here.
  • Deterioration: Not all relations can survive for a long time especially when there are signs of trouble like dissatisfaction, boredom or resentment. Loss or trust and betrayal may eventually lead to the end of the marriage.
  • Termination: theses can either be break ups, death or severing all ties of friendship.

Listed below are factors you must put into consideration in every kind of relationship you have, be it a working relationship, family, friends or intimate;

  • Love: this is an important factor. It is different from liking and not but by the presence or absence of sexual attraction. There are two types of love- companionate and passionate love. Companionate love involves an authentic and enduring bond and a sense of commitment, feeling of caring, sharing goals and perspectives while passionate love has to do with infatuation and sexual relationships
  • Compatibility: religious, social, cultural, financial
  • Friendship
  • Trust and Loyalty: if there is no trust in that relationship, I wonder why it's still existing
  • Respect each other's views, thoughts and opinions
  • Communication: say what you mean, no need for hide and seek
  • Compromise: remember change is the only constant thing. Don't look at it like you are changing for them, look at it like "it will make you better"
  • Be supportive yet truthful even when it hurts
  • You should feel safe and secure with them and vice versa
  • Learn to apologize when you have done something wrong, and also learn to forgive anyone who is truly sorry and apologizes 
  • Not everyone can bear to be criticized, so criticize with caution and learn to accept criticism with grace. It may serve you better in the end. Remember, nobody is an island and you can't know everything.
The next time you try to start a relationship, try to make it an enduring one that will be beneficial to all involved and if it turns sour, still don't feel bad because everyone we meet has a purpose which they fulfilled in our lives. Somehow we learnt something from them. 


  1. I wrote a short article entitle "Another Love" following another blogger who had written about her First Love and I admitted, "I can't love unconditional." Love is complex. I am happily married. If my present husband betrays me, I will no longer love him or perhaps I am saying i will no longer be married to him-either way it is over!!!!

    Nice article! I like your pointers on Stages of Relationships.

    1. Thank you very much Tina. sorry for the late reply. I've been so busy


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