relationship expectations

It’s fair to say that most of us have been the one who has high expectations going into a relationship. It’s equally fair to say we’ve been with someone who also had high relationship expectations. Often it seems that’s all we know. We expect our mate to be this way or that way, expecting them to hold true to their online bio; or expecting them to be a certain way because… well, that’s just how we prefer it.

After we have our first serious relationship, it molds us. One way or another, even if it ended badly, we expect our next mate to be like our first. For the purposes of this article, we are focusing on the aspects of the relationship you liked and that suited you well. Maybe in your first relationship you learned that you really like a mate who is attentive. Now that’s what you’re expecting in your next relationship.

We seem to grasp on to our preferred aspects of previous relationships and carry those into future ones, holding our next mate to high, and sometimes unreasonable, expectations. Expectations of any sort usually lead to a failing relationship. Yet, we seem to continue to do it, assuring ourselves that we deserve the best and only the best. We tell ourselves that having high expectations is OK, simply because our friends told us so.

I’ve been single for a while, so I guess you could say that as a writer and a woman who simply wants to find true love, I tend to use my personal life and the lives of people around me as inspiration. I observe it all to gain the wisdom and lessons of love, relationships, dating, and single life. Throughout everything I have observed, I have a better understanding of it all, especially now that I am single.

I’ve told myself what I want and don’t want in a partner. Even still, I don’t go into a relationship with high expectations. As a matter of fact, I don’t go in with any whatsoever. Exes claim to have me figured out, friends seem to know what my type is, but on the contrary they couldn’t be more wrong.

Going into a relationship with high expectations is like going on a first date and expecting to marry that person—it’s going to be painful, awkward, and ruin everything. This goes for those in the early stages of a relationship, and for those who have been together for five years and are still holding onto their expectations: you are only setting yourself up for failure and disappointment. I’m not saying you shouldn’t have high standards for yourself—yes, we all deserve “the best”—but you have to go in expecting nothing so that when something great happens, it’s simply a beautiful thing. 

Expectations will ruin your relationship. No one wants to be with someone who literally expects them to deliver the moon to your doorstep. If you’re in a relationship for five plus years, and expect your guy to propose but you haven’t discussed it, you’re also setting yourself up for failure. No one is mind reader, and even with all the obvious hints you think you’re dropping, they probably still have no clue you’re expecting a ring any time soon.

Be with someone who will surprise you in both little and big ways. Be with someone who will do things for you because they want to, not because you tell them that’s what you expect. And if that relationship fails, do not go into the next one expecting the same. Each person is different; each person will do things for you in their own way on their own time.

Contrary to what Beyoncé tells you, you are not a queen bee and not every guy needs to bow down to you. And guys, the same goes for you. Just because your mom may have done everything for you, you shouldn’t go into a relationship expecting that from your partner. There may be some women out there that enjoy doing mom-like duties for their husbands, but not every woman does. So don’t go being that macho guy who demands it. 

I think the biggest misconception of expectations in relationships is the honeymoon stage. Everyone loves that honeymoon stage – there are no problems or disagreements to sort through, and everything is new and easy. But for most of us, it comes to an end after a few months and the complaining sets in. I have found that the most successful relationships I know of are the ones where, in some ways, the honeymoon stage never ends. Where there is no honeymoon stage, but simply love, day in and day out from day one. 

It’s unreasonable to expect that your relationship will always be smooth sailing, but successful relationships recognize this from the very first date. They continue to woo each other in their own ways, work together to solve disagreements, and treat each other with respect.

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Every relationship will have ups and downs, but it will always take work, even when things are really good. Those successful relationships are also the ones where both partners don’t expect anything from each other. They love each other, they have mutual appreciation and respect, and they show each other this by their actions and words.

They prove that in a relationship, you don’t need to go in having any type of expectation, but only go in having fun and knowing that if something beautiful comes of it, it’s because it all came naturally from your love of one another.