One relationship expert, Hellen Chen, estimates that 85% of relationships end in a breakup, while 50% of marriages end in divorce. These might seem like tough odds to beat, but if you can get past the honeymoon phase and the initial rough patches, there’s a good chance that your romantic partner is your best friend, too, and you two are in it for the long haul.
Here are seven easy ways to know if your partner is also your best friend.
1. You bring them along when you hang out with your friends.
In a partnership between two best friends, you WANT to bring them along when you make plans with the rest of your friends. They’re your best friend, so it’s easy to relax and have a good time without worrying about any drama or jealousy lurking about.
2. You guys can talk…and talk…and talk…
…and never, it seems, run out of things to say to each other. You guys connect on every level, so a conversation with them is enjoyable and you just want it to keep going, Sports, politics, religion, you guys can talk about absolutely anything without the chatter getting boring.
3. Your arguments don’t ruin your friendship.
Arguing is pretty normal in any relationship: friends, lovers, or both. You and your partner wouldn’t think of ending your relationship over a fight, though, You know that productive means of argument lead to better relationships, not insecurities or ego traps.
4. You can be together without “being together”.
In other words, your every moment together doesn’t have to be planned and executed. You can just do your thing and let your partner do theirs. You can even just do nothing together.
5. They’ll be there for you no matter what.
If your partner is someone you can count on, who would cross oceans and slay dragons for you, then you’re in luck, because your partner is your best friend, too. If your partner is always there to support you, never makes you feel like a burden, and wants to be around you when life’s got you down just so they can help pick you back up, you might just have a partnership — and a friendship — for life.
6. You can relax and have fun together.
Your partner may be the only person who knows your crazy side, your silly side, your wickedly funny side, but that’s okay: as long as they’re bringing it out of you, that’s all that counts. Your partner should be a person we’re our silliest, scariest, craziest around and they genuinely enjoy us at our finest.
7. You laugh and joke around with your partner more than anyone.
When life’s got you down, your partner is there to pick you back up. Nobody is more able to remove you from the seriousness that is life — sometimes with just a word or a phrase — more than your partner can. It’s what makes them your best friend, too.
This one is my own: you really, genuinely like their kids (if they have them, obviously). Getting to know and become friends with my boyfriend’s daughter has been one of the great joys of my life. She is genuinely one of my favorite people.
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Dondi Leigh is a freelance writer focusing on love and relationships.
This article was originally published at I Heart Intelligence. Reprinted with permission from the author.