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Everyone has a different set of strengths and weaknesses. When it comes to relationships, it is very important that the strengths of one part make up for the other’s weakness. And vice versa. Sometimes, when these aren’t in sync between the two, the relationship becomes toxic. It is also important that both partners are equally giving, and one is not taken for granted. Especially if they do these 13 things:

1. They make it a point to really listen to what you’re saying.

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Most people listen to respond. Rarely, will you find someone who listens to understand. If your partner is one of those precious people, you should consider yourself lucky. Because this means your partner is open to communication and is willing to hear a different take on a certain situation.

2. They do whatever they can to make your life easier and happier.

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It doesn’t have to be in the form of expensive presents, like a new car or a diamond ring. It can be as simple as doing one of their chores, cooking for them or giving them a surprise massage. Most partners need to be told or given a hint about what you might want. But if you have a partner who understands your needs before you have to say them, then that’s a gift.

3. They commit to you and to the relationship

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Admittedly, relationships are difficult. You’re letting someone other than your immediate family into your personal life. They become someone you share a life with. There are bound to be challenges and there may be surprises, as well. But what keeps the both of you going through thick and thin is commitment. Many people avoid commitment and try to take the perks of being in a relationship. But that is dangerous, especially if you invest too much time and emotion into that only to be left by your partner. If your partner is committed to you and your relationship, value that. It means that they want to make it last.

4. They consistently encourage you to just be comfortable with just being yourself.

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Some partners are super toxic. They never let an opportunity go by without telling you about your flaws and how much better you’d be if you just did this or just had that. These people are a big no-no. While some others are just clueless. They are so self-centered and worried about just their own insecurities, that they fail to extend comfort. We can’t blame them for it. Then there are partners who are angels. They make it a point to constantly hype you up about yourself. They’ll randomly tell you, “Wow, you looking fly!” or “I am so proud of you right now.” If your partner is one of those, you’ve got yourself your # 1 Fan.

5. They genuinely have a fun time whenever you’re together.

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If you really do love each other, it should be natural for the both of you to have a good time together. Never should you have to force a smile around each other. Your ultimate source of happiness should be them.

6. They find it important to always take care of you.

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This doesn’t mean that you are too weak to look after yourself. You can be a confident and independent person and still have people around you who take care of you. And same goes for your partner. The way that you worry about your partner and look after them, even though they may be independent. Both of you should have each other’s backs. But remember, there is a fine line between being protective and being overprotective.

7. They take a very mature and healthy approach to resolving a conflict.

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It is important that in times of conflict, your partner doesn’t act impulsively. If your partner sits you down and is willing to talk it out, then that is a bonus. This means that your partner is emotionally intelligent and mentally grown.

8. They aren’t shy to show you off to the world.

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Your partner should feel proud standing next to you. They should never want to hide being associated with you. Simple gestures like holding hands in public, having their hand around your waist or back and always including you in your group of friends are ways that they might be showing you off.

9. They never lack in an effort for making the relationship work.

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Your partner should try their best to keep things good between you. If you’ve got a partner who is unafraid to apologize for their shortcomings, is honest and would do anything to make up for their mistake, you should value them.

10. They aren’t afraid of just being vulnerable to you.

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Your partner should be honest and open about themselves. This means that on their low days, they shouldn’t shut themselves off and avoid talking about it. Instead, it should be your shoulder that they come to cry on. It should be you who they come to let it all out. They should be comfortable showing you their best and their ugliest, both.

11. They never shy away from throwing a compliment your way.

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If your partner manages to tell you that you look beautiful even when you wake up with a bedhead and morning breath, they are a blessing. Never let them go. They care about you, they love you and this is their way of telling you just that.

12. They excite you about the prospect of spending the future together.

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This builds on the former point about commitment. You want a partner who is willing to live with you even when you are old, wrinkly and gray-haired. If your partner talks to you about getting married, having a family and growing old together with a spark in their eye, then protect them at all costs.

13. They always make you feel loved.

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This really goes without saying. Your partner is your lover. They shouldn’t do anything but love you. And if you fail to feel it, they’re probably not the right one for you. But if you do feel their love, don’t only cherish it for yourself but also give it back to them.

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