What is interdependent relationships and how to build them

To be in harmony with others, you need to learn to understand yourself and your needs.

What is an interdependent relationship

Merging with your partner and constantly making sacrifices for him is not at all romantic. This type of relationship is called codependency and does not bode well. There is also the opposite situation – counterdependence, when one person keeps his distance and is not able to truly open up to another. Both of these forms are pathological: they exhaust partners, make them unhappy, sometimes even lead to violence.

But there is also a golden mean, which allows you to find a balance between intimacy and self-sufficiency. Psychologists call such relationships interdependent. In this case, partners are emotionally close and fully trust each other, but retain their “I” and a sense of their own integrity.

How to recognize interdependent relationships

  • Both of you maintain your boundaries and respect others. That is, do not do what your partner does not like, respectfully treat his personal space and time, accept his choice. They treat you the same way.
  • You both know how to actively listen. To delve into what is happening, conduct a dialogue, ask questions, pronounce and accept emotions.
  • You set aside time and space for personal projects and hobbies. You have things that you regularly do without a partner, and you do not keep them secret. Whether it’s dance lessons, meeting friends, or just a few hours on your own.
  • You communicate honestly and openly. No reservations or manipulations.
  • Each of you is responsible for your actions. He can admit that he has behaved incorrectly in some situation, tries to correct his mistakes, does not look for the guilty. And at the same time does not take responsibility for the actions of another.
  • You create a safe space for each other. That is, you provide conditions in which you can not be afraid to be vulnerable, calmly talk about your feelings and resolve conflicts. You accept each other, try to do without devaluation, inappropriate jokes, unwelcome criticism and harsh judgments.
  • You participate in each other’s lives. You talk, support, show genuine interest and attention.
  • You have adequate self-esteem. In a relationship, no one seeks to assert themselves by suppressing the other.

With this approach, partners both need each other and retain the necessary autonomy. They have a deep emotional connection, but it is flexible enough so that everyone remains a self-sufficient person, does not lose himself and does not try to make the loved one his property. People have more trust and confidence, fewer complaints, which means there will be fewer cracks in the relationship as well.

Interaction with a partner gives joy and strength, and if conflicts and crises do occur (where can we go without it?), They can be resolved without loss.

How to build interdependent relationships

It is important to focus primarily on yourself, and not on your partner. Get to know yourself better, understand your needs, shape boundaries. Here’s something worth working on:

  • Understand what you like and what is important to you.
  • Don’t be afraid to talk about your wants and needs, and what you don’t like.
  • Spend time with family and friends separately from a partner.
  • Move towards your personal goals.
  • Take time for yourself, your interests and hobbies.
  • Don’t be afraid to say no.
  • Don’t try to suppress yourself to please your partner.
  • If you have trouble understanding yourself and your own boundaries, this work will be long. But it’s worth it. When you have a clear idea of ​​your own “I”, it is easier to read the needs of your partner, give him the necessary space and build harmonious relationships.

There is one more thing. Psychologists believe that at the start of a relationship, it is important to honestly answer the question of why you need this person. It so happens that we start a new romance, because we want to forget our ex-partner, raise our self-esteem, prove something to ourselves or others, get rid of loneliness. If you have similar reasons, you are in a vulnerable position from the very beginning and reduce the chances of a strong equal union. It is better to understand yourself first and only then look for a couple.

By Cindy
November 15, 2020

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