Relationships are a way for people to feel connected to each other. They can be casual, serious, or a mix of both. They may include physical intimacy, such as kissing and hugging, or emotional support and mutual help. Some relationships are short-lived, while others last a lifetime. A relationship can also involve working together on goals or projects, or even living in the same house.
People who are in love have a strong emotional bond with their partner. They care deeply about them, and they are usually willing to go above and beyond for them. When they do something nice for their partner, it doesn’t feel like a chore or a way to earn brownie points. They do it because they genuinely care about their partner and want them to be happy.
In a healthy relationship, the partners respect each other’s feelings and boundaries. They can discuss any issues that arise without feeling judged. They can also argue about things they disagree on in a respectful way that doesn’t involve humiliation or degradation. They know when to compromise and when it’s okay to be right.
While the need for human connection seems to be innate, the ability to form a healthy relationship is learned. Research suggests that the ability to build a loving and stable relationship starts in early childhood, when a child bonds with a caregiver who reliably meets the infant’s needs for food, shelter, warmth, security, and social contact.