Some Qualities of a Successful Relationship; Don’t Take them for Granted


10:40 pm, I had a bad day at the office and decided to rest it away as I usually do. My boss unleashed his dragon again on us as he does every Monday. Was about going to bed when I heard some quick footsteps before I could make any move to check whose footsteps it was, my landlord Mr Ugo, banged my door heavily yelling, “Help oh! James! Help me abeg. My wife is dying. Abeg James abeg! Abeg! My wife is dying. Ugomma oh! Ugomma!

Normally, I won’t respond. But on the call of death, I rush out of my room. It’s not the first time this is happening. His every day Quarrel with his wife before they go to bed is something we their tenants forced ourselves to get use to. No surprise, he came to my door, others won’t give him attention even at the call of death. Whenever we interfere in their Quarrel, they will insult us and ask us to mind our business. What the other neighbours are doing now. I responded even though I wish I could be like the other neighbours.

Blood on the floor as we enter his house, his heavily pregnant wife on the floor bleeding, Mr Ugo and I grabbed and dragged her into the back seat of their Toyota car. Next, we started searching for the car keys. Mr Ugo ran into the house again confused. I joined him. We both spent some minutes going round the house but couldn’t find the key. Then, I went back to the car and found the key at the mouth of the ignition like GOD put it there. Quickly, I start the car and drove as if we were being chased by hired assassins, to the nearest hospital. Observe the security men at the gate of the hospital ran towards the hospital as I screeched the tire of the car and hit the immediate brake. I rushed out of the car and call them back informing them it was an emergency life and death situation. Why I used that speed and applied the immediate brake. I joined Mr Ugo to get his wife out of the car and place her on the stretcher that some nurses accompanied by one of the security brought. We follow them into the hospital. We were asked to wait when we got to the emergency ward. As we wait, I watched Mr Ugo walk around restlessly talking to himself praying. A phrase from his supposed to be silent prayer, got me responding to him.

“GOD, please don’t let her die, I won’t beat her again.”

“Mr Ugo, so you are the one that put her in this condition? I thought she was in labour. You are not a man! You are an Animal! How can you hit a pregnant woman? You went too far, haba! Mr Ugo! ”

Then, I went to his wedding day. We followed Mr Ugo our landlord, to Enugu for his traditional wedding as we were all thankful that Ugomma his heart throb has finally won his heart. Before, Ugomma, Mr Ugo was the hottest landlord in Festac town. He tasted every woman he could before finally settling for Ugomma. Beating them up was his way of getting rid of them. Every girl he brought to the compound had a taste of his fist except Ugomma. What has gone wrong? I asked as I Reminisced the smile he had on his face as he gulped the palm wine from the keg Ugomma took to him kneeling down as it is in the Igbo tradition…..


We all have our own ideas of what a successful relationship should be like. I don’t know anyone that would desire a relationship as that of Mr Ugo and Ugomma. Though, I have heard some guys say, “beating a lady up, is a way of getting her under their control.”Some ladies even concur. Truth is, everyone that gets into a relationship, desire a beautiful and lasting relationship but only few get it.

What then is wrong in our approach of a relationship?

What is a successful relationship like?

How can one get into a successful relationship?

These very important questions we hardly consider before getting into a relationship, these days. Why many relationships end up like the one above.

What is wrong in our approach to a relationship these days?

Ask many people why they get into a relationship, the response you will get will baffle you. Some will say because they are due for a relationship, some will not say it but they get into a relationship to satisfy their needs financially mostly, others to satisfy their sexual desire. Some get into a relationship because it is the thing in vogue and not getting along seemed like missing out to them, others get into a relationship because they are old enough to start dating. Why many relationships crash soon as they start.

If you want to go into a relationship, you must be sure you know that person you are ready to commit and spend the rest of your life with and be sure they have the same interest. When i say know, I don’t mean you know his friends, families, place of work or even his name with likes and dislikes but I am saying do you know what they are capable of?

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You must be emotionally, financially, and spiritually ready and make sure the other party is ready as well before you take the bold step. I know we are all humans and each and every one of us desire to be desired and loved by someone else, this is part of what makes life fulfilling. If not treated with caution can destroy us. Of course you know many that have had short lives due to this. Why you should be more careful you don’t make the same mistake. As relationship make few, it breaks many and make their lives miserable.

What then should we look out for that makes a successful relationship?



Love here means selflessness. Both partners must be ready to share, give, and sacrifice to make the relationship work. The relationship shouldn’t be one sided. One person gaining while the other is losing, It has to be a hundred- hundred devotion. There is no taking advantage of one another flaws, rather both partners will work to help one another master their flaws and become better individuals. Any relationship short of this is just a fantasy ride. Some make the mistake of believing their partner will change with time. Don’t take that risk. If you see signs of selfishness and give them time to adjust but it’s still the same, leave the relationship. Someone that truly loves you will go the extra mile to make the necessary adjustments that is required in their life for the relationship to work. If they are not adjusting, they do not love you.



If you must go into a relationship, be sure it’s headed for marriage which every relationship should lead to. Be sure your partner will marry you except some things happens, like their attitude isn’t good enough and you have to quit. You can know they will marry you by discussing your future with them and knowing their future plans about the relationship. If you are not in their future plans and they have no place in their future plans with you as their husband or wife, end it as soon as you can. Any relationship that must yield fruit must have marriage as its foundation and final destination. Too bad many of us allow the infatuation and sweet talks to blind us toward the signs that the relationship we are into will lead to nothing.


A successful relationship should make you, not break you

Many lost themselves soon as they get into a relationship. Their lives become less interesting, they become less attractive and less social. Some even go to the extent of abandoning their friends and family members to please their partner. There should be freedom in a relationship. You should still be yourself while you are committed to your partner. You should still keep your friends and be in a good relationship with family members. Anything short of this is bondage. You should be free as you were before getting into the relationship, though you are bonding with your partner now. In some situations, our friends and family members might not be in support of a relationship we know is headed the right direction, make them understand. In other cases we have to let go off some activities that will kill our relationships with our partner like our bad habits. Being yourself in a relationship doesn’t mean we should hold on to things that it’s necessary we let go for the relationship to work, like heavy drinking and late night with friends. We know those things we have to let go. Give room to the change. There are even some friends we have to stop hanging out with. These are friends that add no meaning to our lives. Each and every one of us has them.



I call this vulnerability. Being willing to let go, putting aside your personal egos, forgiving and moving on for the greater good of the relationship. You must be ready to compromise when there is need to. This means if a relationship must work, both partners must be ready to make sacrifice. You must know when to concur for the greater good. In other words you must not be right all the time. This will help the relationship survive conflicts and disagreements which will surely arise. Understanding and patience is important here. Have you ever seen a relationship that has stood the test of time? You envy and wish to have one like it right? The secret is there have been lots of compromises.



There is no successful relationship without unity. Both partners must be united for great bonding. You must have one voice. What your spouse will say in front of you is what him or her will also say when you are not there. No back biting or snitching. Your secrets remain within the both of you, no third party. This comes from effective communication. Both of you must know the do’s and don’ts of one another. You should be able to talk things out within yourselves and come to agreement. This doesn’t mean the relationship will be all rosy. There will be times when you will disagree with One another and argue, but the argument will lead to an agreement that will make the both of you better understand one another.


There must be respect in every relationship that must stand the test of time. Respect for our partner set a soft foundation on which the relationship blossom. Respect is reciprocal, they say. It involves giving and getting. Here, what you don’t give, you don’t get. You must give respect to get it. First respect yourself, then your partner. They have no other option but to give it back. If they don’t give it, end the relationship before it destroys you. Someone that doesn’t respect you won’t treat you right. Like the example of Mr Ugo and his wife, he doesn’t respect her. Why he raise his hand on her even in pregnancy. Someone that respects you will have your interest at heart.



Comfort must be there in every successful relationship. It should be a place of rest for both partners. Somewhere you will find strength and love when you are feeling down. A place where you will find relief after the everyday stress of life, not a place you would have second thought about after having a long day. Life gives us enough trouble every day, your relationship shouldn’t add to it. If your relationship is adding to it, you become like a loosed naked wire. Your partner should be that person you can turn to when you need someone to cool you off from the day’s heat or talk you up when you are down. Someone you can beat your chest to lean on. Am sounding like him or her would be perfect right? They are humans and would have their flaws, but despite their flaws, you will find comfort being in that relationship with them. They will ease you and be the light in dark times. Both of you will complement one another, Sweet right? That’s what being in a good relationship give.



Every successful relationship must be balanced. Both partners will be fused together but still have time for their individual life pursuit and support one another. Being fused shouldn’t stop them from being who they are and going for the things they love that make their life complete. Being in a relationship shouldn’t end your individual goals. It should support and help you achieve them. In many situations today, as soon as one gets into a relationship, they stop being themselves and doing the things they love that makes them who they are. This creates space for unhappiness and unfulfillment that in turn make them hold back and make the relationship unfulfilling. If you must enjoy a relationship, let your partner be themselves and give them time to go for what they love. Make them know you are in support of whatever they do that makes them happy. This will create room for balance that every relationship needs.

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Effective communication

You can’t take effective communication away from a successful relationship. Effective communication here isn’t just talking to your partner. It’s talking, listening and discussing with your partner to come to an agreement or resolve issues like settling your differences in understanding. In a good relationship, you should be able to discuss everything with your partner without holding back. There is no keeping of secrets. Rather than discussing things with friends during hangouts, your partner will discuss it with you. This help to strengthen the relationship and cut off third party interference which is an obstacle. For this to happen, you have to be sure you are going into a relationship with someone you can open up to that will also open up to you. It helps strengthen the bond. Many relationships today lack this. Why they don’t last. If I can’t open up to you and you can’t open up to me, what then is the essence of dating?

Even some times, we don’t need to say anything before our partner knows we are communicating; our body language can do the communicating for us. Before we can get to this stage of communication it means we understand ourselves perfectly well and we have passed the stage of talking. Also it means we care about each other and put each other’s feelings first, hence why you noticed the body language of your partner. A partner that doesn’t care won’t notice the body language or what the body language means.



Haha! TRUST! Some hearts beat faster whenever they come across this word. Reason is, they have lost it and are not ready to give it to anyone, not even in marriage. Some have had bad experiences, others learn from others not to give it a shot even in relationship. It’s an expensive word to use in the world of relationship these days, yet there can be no successful relationship without trust. Some will even be bold and polite enough to tell you they don’t trust before getting into a relationship with you so you won’t be surprised. The ones that won’t tell you will show it in their actions. Why a guy or lady will be on their partners phone searching for evidence of cheating, why a married man or woman will be monitoring every call their husband or wife make to see if they are cheating. Believe it or not, there is no successful relationship without trust. Forget what you already know or the experience you had in your past relationships regarding cheating. If you want a successful relationship, you must give in to trust. It saves the relationship things that make it unfulfilling. You already have enough problem to deal with everyday, don’t let your not trusting your partner add to it. Some people that are not happy about your relationship will take advantage of this if you are not careful. Room for trust make the relationship sweet and fun to be in.



One of the reasons many relationships end soon as it starts is because it’s not fun to be in. The persons involved don’t enjoy the company of one another. For a successful relationship, you must enjoy the company of your partner. Why two married people can spend the rest of their life together under one roof. They have found a way to make the relationship enjoyable. One of the ways of doing this is complementing our partner. Telling them how much you appreciate their company and how much they mean to you. This doesn’t mean all successful relationships are fun all the way. Sometimes there will be boredom; you need to enjoy the boredom as well, like times when we will miss our partners for not being around. This is time to reflect how much they mean to us. Other times when we have them around and we still feel bored, holding them in our arms, resting their head on our chest in silence can be fun or going on a date, even watching a movie or listening and discussing music and our favourite sports together. For a better and fun filled relationship you must create passion in what the both of you like doing, in the hobbies of your partner while your partner also does same.

These and many other ways are ways we can enjoy our relationship even in boredom. Some people make the mistake of comparing their relationships to that they see in movies. Reality is very different from the movie world. We are all not always happy all the time, even when we have our partners around. You should find a way to make you partner understand you are with them in whatever they are going through without saying a word. This can be fun.



Hmmm Intimacy! What comes to the mind of most people when you are discussing relationship and mention intimacy is sex and romance

They are right but in a way. You can’t take sex and romance away from intimacy, but intimacy doesn’t only end in sex and romance in a successful relationship. Aside these there is the getting to know and understand our partner like no one else does, not even their parents. We must get to understand their body language, when they need our attention, when they need to be alone. When they are going through hard times, when they had a bad day, and how to help them through; all these without them saying a word

We must also know what makes them happy and sad and how to make them feel good and bring the best out of them.

If all the points listed above is missing in your relationship, then you don’t have a successful relationship and you should be worried because if it ends in marriage it might not be a successful marriage too even if just one is missing.


You want to get into a successful relationship?  Remember all the above points. There might be some I did not add, feel free to share with us in the comments session.

by Tanrose Godwin

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