Relationships survive on many things but most importantly, two people need to know certain things about each other before they dive deep into it. When you have figured out those key aspects, chances of making it work remain high because at the end of the day these things define how you relate to each other. It is true some relationships can get boring if they stay perpetually on the same track or when both of you expect the same activities, same hobbies, tastes and preferences. It is in knowing these aspects that people get to know each other well and know if they will have a long-lasting happy relationship or a short-term fling. Sometimes people work on hiding these things or at least fake them, especially if they are not committed to something long-term. Ever dated someone and they are not interested in you meeting their relatives. If you can’t figure out these things on someone you are dating, that is already a red flag according to Leila Natacha Umuhoza, a relationship counsellor, working with a local church. “Keeping a functional relationship today can be an uphill task because you have many people out there who are not interested in a serious relationship. All they are looking for is adventure,” Umuhoza says. “When your partner is trying to hide these things from you, just so you know things might now work as you thought because to date or even live with someone, you ultimately have to know that other side, even though some of the truth makes you uncomfortable,” she adds. In his recent post, Todd Baratz, a renowned psychologist and relationship expert, says that there are seven things which people need to make sure they have tabs on for their relationship to work well. Sometimes these issues are addressed through conversations but most times people fear talking about them because of how sensitive they are or fear unsettling their better half but Baratz says these are important aspects of a relationship which every couple should know about each other. “I often don’t use the word ‘should’ but you should know these things. The better you know each other the better the relationship. Unfortunately, few of us get any kind of relational education so we do not learn to have these conversations or feel safe enough to ask or answer,” “Some struggle to be vulnerable and open with their partners. But it’s a must. You may not have had them in your family of origin but you decide the level of intimacy you want in your adult relationships,” he says, emphasizing why it is a must. Childhood history Early family relationships directly impact who we are for the rest of our lives. In fact, the only relationships that directly parallel each other are the ones we have with our original caregivers and our adult partners. The more you know about each other's history the better you can become at understanding triggers and navigating around or through conflict, and disconnection, and therefore the easier it becomes to create repair. Relationship history Couples should know about each other's relational history. This includes all important social, romantic, and sexual relationships. From what worked, what didn't work, and past challenges to lessons learned, knowing each other's relational past is crucial when building a relational future. Love references Everyone has a variety of different preferences for how they like to give and receive love. And don't use broad categories like love language. Explicitly state the words, actions, and experiences you crave that define your closeness preferences. And keep in mind that these preferences may change depending on the context, time of day, and more. This information is what it means to anticipate needs and provide care. Rational challenges Be as open, direct, and honest as possible when it comes to your challenges with each other. Go through a list of triggers, frustrations, disappointments, and any other challenges that have arisen in the past, present, or future. This isn't the time to revisit conflict and attempt to resolve it. It's about creating awareness, holding space, and normalizing the challenges that may create conflict. Sexual desires, kinks and more Good sexual connections are built. If you want one you will have to understand each other sexually. That includes preferences for touch, fantasies, eroticism, kink and all other details that create a roadmap for each partner's desire. This conversation is both a verbal conversation and a show-and-tell activity where each partner literally gives directions. Keep in mind asking about turn-offs is just as important as turn-ons. Internal world We all have complex and exciting internal worlds. You know the random thoughts and responses to our day-to-day experience. Get in the habit of inviting each other inside by sharing your inner thoughts and feelings. Dreams and future plans Dreams and future plans. This is something to start sharing from day 1 without stopping. Share literal dreams when asleep. Share lofty and grandiose dreams for professional success. Share your 5, 10, 15, and 20-year plans. Share it all.