On being a partner in a relationship

Yesterday, we were on a car to get the kids to school when the radio DJs chatted about relationships. One of them mentioned about this person that has been worrying about her new relationship with a guy. This person, a girl, said that the guy she’s currently dating is her second time. She worries that she can’t be a good partner because she feels she’s lacking in experience in dating.

I found that discussion seeped into my mind more than I thought (I would blame my pre-coffee brain at that time,) and I feel… You don’t have to have a lot of dating experiences to be a better partner, no? 🤔

One of the DJs pointed out a really good case. “The downside of having a lot of exes is the emotional baggage, man. When I meet my boyfriend, then-husband, I got A LOT of emotional baggages and issues that I have to fix first!”

I also not agreeing with the concept of “dating as an exercise”. It makes it sounds like a sport or academic exercise, and that’s… Weird. In a relationship, you are not in a static mode. You constantly learn and grow, and as helpful and kind your partner is or will be, it does not mean you see them as a sparring partner or someone that’s responsible of your growth.

I have several exes and flings, yes, and I don’t think I’m a better person when I met my boyfriend-then-husband when we started dating. I might be an even worse person at that time. Had I had more exes, will it make me a better person and a better partner? I highly doubt it.

I personally feel that to be a better partner, one needs to be a better person for themselves first. This will sound so “LOOK INTO YOUR HEART”-motivational speech thingy, but that’s what I learned so far. The number of past relationship that someone has does not define whether they are a good partner or not. For some, it might be seen as “experience,” yes. For some, it might be seen as “player”. In the end, it’s a lose-lose situation. I can imagine someone with a lot of exes is seen as a player, and one without is seen as n00b 🤷

To be a better partner, one needs to understand the concept of consent, respect, humility, sense of humor, responsibility, and many more. All that can be learned from many ways, not necessarily from romantic relationship alone. It can be learned from relationship within the family, friendship, work environment, and even strangers we meet on the streets. Having past relationships that didn’t work would be one of the lessons, but never make it be the ultimate lesson.



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