Every relationship is different, but based on the things that you've probably lived together in a year, there's a list of things you should now by now.
One of the greatest parts about a relationship is that, over time, you get to know this person that you care about and live many experiences with them. If you spend more than a year with them, you’ve probably lived through a series of experiences and situations that made you closer and, more importantly, might have strengthened your relationship as well. Of course, no relationship is the same, so there aren’t one-size-fits-all rules saying that at a certain point you and your partner should have lived X situations and known X things about each other and if not, things won’t work between you. Nonetheless, based on the things that probably happened in a year, like dates, weekends with them, birthdays, ups and downs, there’s a set of things you must know by now. In case you don’t, perhaps it’s time to pay more attention to your relationship or just ask your partner about those things you want to know, in case these haven’t surfaced or you haven’t mentioned them. I’m sure they’ll appreciate the fact that you’re showing more interest in them and want to know them as best as you can.
Their weekly routine
By this I don’t mean you know where they are and what they’re doing 24/7. Nonetheless, you have a general idea of their routine, what time they wake up, the time they leave the house, the days and hours they work, their free days, if they have a hobby, if they go to the gym, or other things like that. If you have a general idea of their weekly schedule, you know when you can see each other, at what time you can call them or text them, or on which days they’re busier.
The food they like (and dislike)
I’d find it quite hard to believe that after a year you don’t have a general idea of the food they like or dislike, especially because most dates involve eating at some point. Maybe you don’t know every single thing they enjoy, but at least you know if they like ketchup on their fries, if they’re allergic to seafood, if they like getting popcorn at the movies, or if they’re okay (or not) with pineapple on their pizza. In case you don’t, it’s a good moment to pay attention to what they order next time you hang out.
Who their best friends are
Some people find it really difficult to introduce their partner to their family and friends. I don’t want to make you paranoid, but I do believe that if after a year they haven’t introduced you to some of their friends, or you don’t have the slightest idea about your partner’s friendships, maybe they’re not very serious about the relationship. You don’t have to see them every weekend or even like them, but the fact that you know them means that your partner trusts and cares about you enough to let you in an important part of their life, which is their friendships.
What their relationship with their family is like
This issue is similar to the previous point. Maybe your partner doesn’t have a good relationship with their family, and perhaps that’s why you haven’t met them yet. However, at least you’re aware of their family situation. On the contrary, if they have a good relationship with them, it would be ideal for them to introduce you, because it's like with friendships: it shows their relatives that you’re an important part of their life and the other way around; you’re getting to know your partner even better through the people they grew up with.
Their life goals
When your partner really wants to create a stronger bond with you, at some point they share this important part of them. Maybe they don't have very ambitious goals, but the fact that they told you something this personal creates a deeper connection between you two. Besides, their goals also tell you about their values and their views on certain areas of life, like family, career, and even their ethics.
The type of music they like
I believe that one of the first things that comes up first when you’re dating someone is their musical taste. Perhaps they haven’t told you specifically about their favorite song (even I can’t really decide that because I love many songs), but on those first few dates you can talk about music genres you enjoy, or recent concerts you’ve been to.
Their favorite activities
Through your dates and time you hang out together, you also learn about the activities they enjoy or if they have a hobby. Knowing that not only helps you decide what’s the best way to spend time together, but you also discover other parts of themselves, like their fears, their likes, their values, and even physical things. What do I mean with this last point? For instance, you know you can’t ride a roller coaster with them because they easily get dizzy, or you can count on them for a Netflix and chill evening because you know they have no problem staying home.
Their favorite movies
Talking about Netflix and chill, after being a year with them you should know, if not their favorite movies, the kind of films they like watching. This is something you get to know through experience and spending time with them. They might have more than one genre they like (or dislike) or a whole list of films they could binge-watch without any problem.
If they have religious beliefs
Maybe you won’t bring up religion in the first dates because it’s quite delicate. However, if the relationship is serious, an important issue as this one must come up because it says a lot about a person’s view of life, the morals and ethics they follow, and even part of their schedule or family traditions. It’s also important to know if they have a religion because, in case your religion or lack of one clashes with theirs, you will have to find together –always being respectful of the other– a way to solve the possible issues that might arise from of that.
The things they’re obsessed with
Not everyone has an obsession, but there must be something that they are diehard fans of: a TV show, a comic, a music genre, a hobby, a discipline, a clothing brand, something. Even if they’re shy, if it's very important for them, they’ll share it with you, since you’ve become an important part of their life. Who knows? Maybe they'll even want you to join the fandom, and even better, you might end up doing it.
What comforts them
When you're in a relationship, it's not always a walk in the park. As you get to know the best of your partner, you might also see them at their worst moments, and afterwards you’ll decide whether you’re okay with that or if it’s enough to make you say goodbye. Nonetheless, if you’ve been with them through a hard time, you’ll also learn about the things that comfort them. Maybe some ice cream, a song, a movie, or even your presence itself might be enough to comfort them and make them feel that everything’s going to be alright.
Ways they say “I love you”
Last but not least, there are non-verbal ways to express your affection, and of course, they vary from person to person. Your partner won’t say “I love you” all the time, but you’ll get to know them enough to know the ways they say it. Maybe it’s just with a comforting hug after a bad day, a smile when you need it the most, a surprise present, taking care of you when you’re sick, giving you space when you need it. The list goes on and on, but the essential part is that those actions are the best way they show their feelings for you and how much they care about you.
I insist: it’s not the end of the world if you don’t know these things about your partner because each relationship grows at its own pace. Still, you can use this list as a guideline to create a stronger bond between you two.
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Photos by Lexie Hand