You shouldn’t have to settle for being with someone who only wants to keep you indoors and hide you away from the world. You shouldn’t have to settle for date nights that comprise the two of you just lounging around on the couch watching Netflix while you munch on take-out pizza. You shouldn’t tolerate being with a partner who would look to hide you from their friends, parents, co-workers, and other important people in their life.

You shouldn’t have to be with someone who looks to create a substantial divide between you and their personal life outside of your relationship.

It really isn’t a good omen that your significant other is so willing to just hide you away from the rest of the world. You should be gravely concerned if you and your partner have been together for quite a while and they still haven’t gotten around to updating their relationship status on their Facebook stage. You should be troubled if you still haven’t gotten around to talking about defining your relationship. You should be scared if they haven’t invited you to meet their family and friends.

These are all really big deals and you shouldn’t be taking them lightly. This is very telling of what kind of relationship the two of you have – and things aren’t looking good at all.

Your significant other should always be excited at the thought of introducing you to all of the important people in their life. This is how you are able to really foster a sense of longevity and sustainability in your own relationships. You need to be able to merge your social circles because that is essential in actually accommodating one another in each other’s lives.

You always need a person who makes an effort to make you feel involved, included, and invested in their world. This is how you know that they are serious about keeping you around for the long haul. This is how you can tell that they’re not just stringing you along until they find someone new who they can latch onto. Your significant other should be someone who makes a conscious effort to accommodate you into their lives just because they are a lot happier whenever you’re around.

You should never have to feel like a mere spectator or an outsider to your own relationship. You shouldn’t have to feel like you only know parts of the person you are in a relationship with. You are entitled to getting the whole story – and not just the parts of themselves that they want to show you. You have a right to be fully exposed to the entirety of their world because that is what it takes to build intimacy and openness in a relationship.

You are supposed to be comfortable with getting to know each other’s set of families and friends. You need to have more than just your alone time together. You must also be willing to be surrounded by the people who mean the most to you. You are supposed to branch out and socialize as a couple. You are supposed to have lives that mesh well with one another’s.

Naturally, that doesn’t mean that the two of you need to be glued at the hip for every single moment for the rest of your lives together. You are still allowed to have your own set of personal friends. You are still allowed to have separate interests, hobbies, and passions. You are still allowed to go on nights out on the town with your own social circle independent from your partner. You are always encouraged to still maintain your independence in your relationship.

You are perfectly free to spend Friday nights out with your closest pals. However, you should also make it a point to remember that you are a team and that you face this world together. Sure, your significant other can go to the gym without you if physical fitness isn’t necessarily your thing. But you should also be okay to tag along with them every once in a while. IT’s okay that you have different hobbies and interests. But it’s always nice when you immerse yourselves in each other’s worlds.

If you are privileged enough to be in a loving relationship with someone, you don’t necessarily have to make it a point to spend every waking moment of your lives together. You shouldn’t have to abandon your friends in order for you to make your partner happy. You shouldn’t have to give up time for your passions just because your partner wants you all to themselves. You don’t have to choose between one or another. Coexistence is all about being able to overlap your lives as a couple.

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