3 reasons why your partner shouldn't be your best friend
Since we were mere tots, we've been ingrained with the belief that our soulmate and veritable life partner must fulfil several roles to make them "love-of-life" worthy: not only must they be your lover and partner, but they also have to fulfil all of the qualities of a best friend.
This can be chalked up to many things, but I'm rather partial to scapegoating the ever-insidious institution of marriage; a lifetime of consuming saccharine-sweet Hollywood films and everything that has ever come out of The Walt Disney Company.
Now, contrary to popular belief, I have always maintained that people who claim that their partner is their best friend are either already Becky/Billy no mates or have developed a sudden case of tunnel vision. I know what you're thinking, but hear me out - these are the four reasons why your partner should never, ever be your best friend...
1. Putting all your eggs in one basket is a recipe for disaster
To have your significant other be the only person you go to for love, support and friendship is simply too much for one person to handle, and nor is it fair. Sure, when I'm going through a rough patch, I do expect my partner to be there for me, and to offer care and support but it's also important to realise that you have other people to fulfil those duties - namely all of the friends that you have accumulated throughout school, university and work.
While it's perfectly normal to have your blinders on when you're in a new relationship, and "see" only them, it's not healthy because you're effectively putting all your eggs in one basket, that is, you're making your partner your only priority.
And you know what? There's a chance that "the one" won't be "the one" for ever.
2. You need to keep some sense of mystery
As psychiatrist and author of All You Need Is Love and Other Lies About Marriage, John Jacobs says, relying on your partner for everything not only "puts an enormous amount of pressure on your relationship" but "having to handle such a needy partner is not very sexy".
We've all been in the end stages of a relationship, where everything that you initially found endearing about your partner now seems to grate on your last nerve, and the chances of this happening are greatly exemplified when your partner knows absolutely everything there is to know about you. A sense of mystery keeps everything feeling fresh.
3. You start to lose your individuality
How do you become a well-rounded person? By having new experiences and meeting different people, of course. By making one person your everything, you're effectively closing yourself off to exploring different facets of you identity, facets that could be brought out by putting yourself out there.
Further, the strongest couples are able to stay together for so long precisely because they remain as two separate individuals, each bringing something different and fresh to the relationship.
So by stepping outside of your comfort zone every once in a while and trying something new, whether that be attending a cookery class or just something new at the gym, you both give each other time to try new activities that the other wouldn't necessary be into and vice versa. This means that when you come back to each other, you're more enlightened and interesting people with new things to share and talk about.
So there you have it: the perfect excuse to forsake your honorary Netflix-and-chill night for a big night on the town with the girls. After all, you don't want your relationship to go stale, do you?
In other relationship related news, here are 10 things no one tells you about being in a relationship...