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A good quality...

Roober

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I'm not exactly sure how to explain this as an ideal quality in a partner (man or woman) or a term to define the behavior, so I will use an anecdote...

My brother and I stopped talking about 6 years ago. He was upset that I had talked and spent time with his exgf (and baby mama)in order to see my niece. I stubbornly took the stance that "you cant tell me who I can or cannot talk to" and "she hasn't done anything to me". He was hurt, rightfully so, and we ceased all communication. My wife at the time was okay with this decision. She took my side, obviously, and had said I had done nothing wrong. She never openly pushed me to make amends or fix the relationship. She didnt have a great relationship with my brothers current wife, so thinking back, maybe it was her way of removing that discomfort from her life?

Fast forward to 2018, and I am in a relationship with a woman who regularly pushes me to make amends with my brother. She has coached on methods to communicate, and we have talked about it quite extensively. Well, I finally reconnect with my brother and try to make up for lost time, which cant be done. We are on the right path.

So what's the point? Look for a person who is motivated by your best interests, not by their own. This got me thinking about a situation with a close friend who has a big change coming in his life, and all of his guy friends are attempting to convince him that it is a poor decision...

I have a buddy who is going through divorce and plans to move to washington in two years, leaving his kids behind with mom. His current girlfriend is okay with this situation. Does she really care about his well-being if she allows him to move away from his children and only see them during the summers? Are her actions driven by her own self-interest? If someone allows their partner to sacrifice their family, especially children, are they a positive impact to that persons life?

These are the questions you need to ask yourself in any relationship. Do you allow yourself to be influenced by others which do not have your best interests in their hearts?

As Jordan Peterson says, in relationships "you have to contend with someone. They will tell you when your being an idiot."
 

resilient

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Interesting thought about interests that look out for you or ones that are considerably self-serving.

Someone told me once something along the lines “either look out for you and take control where you can assert yourself over your own life or others will do it for you.”

The one time I wish I heeded the advice of my family and peers though was going through with marrying my ex-wife when others repeatedly saw how she disrespected me in front of others and looked down on me leading up to the wedding day. It was always about her and not necessarily taking my interests into consideration. It took me a while to unload and forgive that baggage later.

I do know life long friends can have good intuition about some personal decisions though.

Just this start of the summer, my best friend told me I was walking into another trap with a plate when I first told him about her. Fast forward a month later and she ended up flaking an important date and branch jumping fast when we got past a month of dating.
 

TheMonkeyKing

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As is said, women's modus is communication; men's is action.

Allow me regale a similar but differing example.

A close mate had and his missus had a baby just over a year ago, after maybe 18 months of dating. Though he will maintain it was 'unexpected', it is no secret that she was broody, being in her late 30's; we know how time ticks along quickly for women of that age.
Long story short, though my mate has provided, bought the house etc etc, he obviously wasn't ready for the commitment and up until recently, has been going out up to 4 times a week. He's been having all sorts of advice, mainly leaning toward the 'face your responsibilities' school of rationality. Not unsurprising.

My advice to him - do what you want, but understand that there are potential consequences. At the end of the day, as individuals, we have to do what makes us happy, whether in the immediate short term, or in the longer term.

The point being; I would rarely ever tell a guy friend what to do. That is what women do. I'm there as a sounding board, and give an honest evaluation of the situation and the possible consequences of action. But end of the day, men learn through experience, not lecturing. In fact, I think women do as well; except with women, there is a more continuous running commentary that runs alongside.
 

BeExcellent

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In a long term partner you want someone who encourages you to be your highest and best self. How that manifests itself will vary because it depends on the variables of the two people in the relationship. You want someone who is willing to be direct with you, who has enough respect for you and respect for themselves to be willing to have the difficult conversation and face the potential resultant conflict, and someone who can manage and handle that conflict. You want people who will strive toward truth and strive toward the best interest of the other person. Someone who puts the interests of the other person and the relationship on par with their own interests. Ideally you want those best interests to line up, but this will not always be the case, and when it isn't you want someone who will advocate the highest and best result collectively (considering yourself, your partner, & the relationship.)

The idea that relationships are supposed to be "easy" is misleading. You want something that is worth the investment. That does not mean easy, although those two things may not be mutually exclusive (again depends on the two people and the relationship itself.)
 
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