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By Victoria Simiyu.

The marriage institution is under a big threat for so many reasons but the most evident reason is due to lack of trust. There are crucial things to observe in a relationship and once they are tampered with, everything takes another turn and at the end of the day, they impact so heavily on our attitude and perception of a healthy relationship.

In all kinds of relationships, communication, trust and commitment count the most. Be it in employment, family, friendship, dating and in marriage. Communication is the most crucial of all because through it, trust is achieved and no doubt each party depicts a sense of commitment once communication is flowing smoothly. Most of the times we tend to believe that only one party has to do it always. Consider the case of a parent; a child will always expect the parent to check on them always. Why can’t the child also check on the parents? You will complain so much about how they are not caring but you forget that they have your interest at heart and even in their silence they at least think of you and can still afford to murmur a prayer for you.

Avoid being selfish, you always want it all for yourself. Whoever extends their concern must also be your concern. This can only be achieved through humility. When you humble yourself, you will look at things differently and because love conquers all, you will always have a reason to maintain a mutual relationship. We allow ego to take control of us and this is the very reason why we mostly want everything to be in our favour and not others people's favour.

It takes a lot to build trust and make others believe in us, but still it can take a second to loose the trust and make people have difficulties in believing us again. The period of dating should be made realistic to avoid shocks when you get married and realize that the person you have married is totally different from the one you were dating. This causes a lot of harm to both parties because each will struggle to find out about the hidden things about the other. The source of all this drama is because of faking ones personality and character. Pretence should be avoided in a relationship especially during dating. Dating should not be rushed. Both parties should take everything slow and take time to learn and know more about each other.

Do not fake it, always be real. The first impression that you depict to someone determines a lot on the success or failure of the relationship. Faking about the real you will have a great negative impact on the relationship. When a man wants to win a lady's heart, he does anything and everything to make sure his proposal is considered. What happens after a month is what leads to the turn of events. If you give someone an impression that you are gentle, you pamper them with gifts and take them out for dinner, shopping and outings during the dating period and change once they accept you, that relationship is bound to have problems. You should continue with your good deeds and only change is the circumstances at hand dictate the same e.g when you get an accident or loose your job

Be open about your finances. Money is known to either make or break a relationship. Be open and tell your partner the much you make and sit down with him/her to plan on how to spend it the right way. I know most of you won’t agree with me on this because we all like some privacy when it comes to our finances but we have to consider the fact that financial openness greatly strengthens a relationship. Always think about the other party when you get some cash. For instance, when you go shopping, don’t just buy your own suit, buy her a nice dress or pair of shoes. This will make her feel loved, appreciated and cared for.

When you make someone understand the real you, you give them an opportunity to accept who you are and what you stand for. When you explain yourself clearly, things will never change when circumstances change. One will empathize with you and this is the beginning of building trust and understanding. You will hear complains like:” this is not the person I fell in love with, or this is not the person I have known since”.
 In a relationship, always make it mutual, taking care of each other’s feelings, strength and weaknesses. When you love someone, you will always have a reason to stay even if there are a thousand reasons to leave because you know their strength and you are there to help them be strong and manage their weakness. It's always inspiring to know that there is someone who will stand by you, offer a shoulder to lean on and make you feel that you can do it. That's what a healthy relationship entails. 

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