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Expectations In A Relationship (13 Reasonable Expectations)

Every woman has certain expectations regarding who she wants for a future partner. They set expectations for their relationship, and cross their fingers that the universe will grant them the specific things they expect. 

When your unmet expectations don’t happen the way you hoped, how then do you react? Do you take your frustration out on your partner, or accept defeat when you set unrealistic expectations in the first place? 

Unreasonable relationship expectations are the easiest kinds to set because they are more ideal than real. You think you can get whatever your heart desires. However, you won’t have a good relationship just because you made a wish. You should be willing to give back whatever high expectations you feel your boyfriend owes you. 

If you cannot act similarly or sustain the expectations, it is unfair to expect your romantic partner to do the same. To avoid feeling disappointed at every turn, it is better to set achievable expectations. On that note, this article will give you 13 reasonable expectations in a relationship that will ensure you have a peaceful and healthy love life.

13 Reasonable Expectations In A Relationship

1. Expect respect and kindness

expect respect and kindness

Your relationship expectations should include being treated with the utmost respect and kindness. No woman deserves to be treated poorly, especially if she is treating her man so well. 

It is alright to ignore anyone trying to water down your desire for a healthy relationship. They are probably lacking respect and kindness in their relationships too. Your man should consider it natural to include you in every decision-making process. He shouldn’t be the only one making the relationship rules. 

You certainly shouldn’t allow him to think he rules the affairs of your life. What other people appreciate as harmless possessiveness can become abuse. Therefore, if your man isn’t treating you with respect or physical affection, it is your right to call him out on it. If your expectations in a relationship are based on this, ignore anyone shaming you into thinking you’re foolish for wanting the best.

2. Set achievable physical expectations in your relationship

No woman would fault you for desiring a well-built man with muscles, 5-6 packs, and other trimmings of the man of your dreams. Many women like you desire men who are the stuff of wet dreams, and there's no harm in a little fantasy. However, every woman soon comes to terms with the fact that a physically perfect-looking man exists only on sexy paperbacks.

Reality isn’t a steamy novel where your fantasy man is doing all the right things with his perfect body and well-hung member. The reality is that your man is doing his best to be healthy yet attractive. It will be uncool for you to drive your boyfriend to distraction with your expectations of physical perfection.

How would you feel if he told you to become a real-life Barbie when you’re satisfied with your current shape? If your man isn’t living a healthy lifestyle, you can encourage him to consider a healthier option. What you can’t do is to browbeat him into developing muscles. 

3. Expect quality time with your boyfriend

It is normal to expect your partner to spend quality time with you. No matter what else is going on in both you and your partner’s lives, there should be room for spending time together. Regardless of how busy he is, he shouldn’t be too busy for the relationship. 

Note that you need to return the gesture and create time for quality communication, time out, vacation, or carrying out mutual projects. For relationships to exceed a temporary mark, both parties need to be in each other’s company as often as possible. As such, if one of your expectations in a relationship is a quality constant connection, you’re on track.

4. Expect your partner to need alone time

It is expected that partners be in the company of each other a lot, but they also need alone time away from each other. If you have unreasonable expectations that he will be with you all the time, you might want to have a rethink. It is not realistic to expect your boyfriend to be available to you every time.

Even if he doesn’t have anything important to do, he would want to be alone sometimes. The fact that some men in serious relationships avoid their women sometimes doesn’t mean they are cheating. Men who are loyal in relationships also crave alone time where they focus on themselves. 

You should also have alone time to yourself. It is always a good period for reflection and consideration of how to improve your relationship. 

5. Expect your partner to keep friends

Apart from alone time, a man needs to maintain a friendship with other people. The reason most men run from a romantic relationship is that some women make relationships seem like prisons. Men don’t like to be captured because they like doing the capturing. Until they are ready to trap and be trapped, they will avoid serious relationships.

As such, you might lose your man if you try to keep him from maintaining other relationships he considers important. If you have fears about the kind of friends he keeps, talk to him about it. If his platonic relationships include more women than men, let him know you want to be the priority.

However, fighting with him always or trying to break his other relationships will not end well.

6. Expect him to have a life outside your relationship

expect him to have life outside your relationship

Unrealistic expectations in a relationship include expecting your man to spend time only on things that interest you. Why would any woman want to date a man with no ambition outside of a relationship? Unless you’re both the next Kardashians, your relationship isn’t all you’re expected to focus on. 

You can’t think that your man would come running to you every time you ask. He has other obligations and his family falls under his topmost priority too. If you expect that he won’t have other priorities apart from you, you’re setting up your relationship for failure.

7. Expect healthy intimacy

You have a right to enjoy healthy intimacy in your relationship. Intimacy within a romantic relationship isn’t limited to just sex. However, sex is the most obvious type of intimacy couples share in a relationship, which is why it’s normal to focus on it. If you don’t agree on what sex in your relationship should be like, there will be issues. 

How many times do you expect to have sex in a week, does it meet your partner’s expectations? Are you being unreasonable about what you think sex in your relationship should be like? Discussing sex is just as important as discussing finance in your relationship. 

Instead of getting mad at your partner for refusing your sexual fantasies, help him understand why you need him to try. Also, try meeting each other halfway so that you’ll be doing what the other person finds comfortable sexually. 

8. Allow compromise in your expectations

No relationship makes it without each party willing to give an inch just to make the other person happy. If your relationship is to succeed, you need to achieve your expectations without trampling on that of your partner. 

Relationships where there is no room for compromise end up being filled with resentment on both sides. It would be unrealistic to think your man would always bend backward to satisfy you when you’re not willing to do the same things he does for you.

At the same time, don’t pretend to be happy with lowering your expectations when you resent doing so. Communicate expectations before they become a problem you cannot fix. When your partner knows your desires, he’d be able to tell you his wants too. Then, both of you can work out a balanced solution. 

9. Set achievable communication expectations

Without a healthy connection, your relationship will fall apart. Great communication isn’t just about always talking to each other. It is also about feeling secure that your man loves you even when he cannot talk to you often.

When you expect that your man will be available to see or talk to you every day, you will be disappointed. Remember that he has other responsibilities and interests to attend to. Your constant need to hear his voice might be distracting and no man wants to fail at his responsibilities. If you continue down this path, your relationship will suffer.

10. Expect honesty and transparency

A major quality you shouldn’t compromise for in your relationship is honesty. Before you accept to be committed to a man, you must trust him. You’re allowed to question his integrity if he gives you any reason to doubt him down the line. 

It is not too much to expect transparency in everything, especially if you have been completely open with him too. Have conversations about each other’s past, and exchange secrets you think will impact your relationship. The only situation where you can’t expect transparency is when you’ve both agreed on a temporary relationship. 

11. Set healthy expectations for general support

A relationship is meant to offer you the kind of support your friendships cannot give you. However, don’t expect that your boyfriend would shoulder all your physical, mental, and emotional responsibilities. 

Even though he is handy around the house, don’t allow him to mostly handle the household chores while claiming to be tired. Planning date night is not just your boyfriend’s responsibility, but also yours. You cannot be the only one leaning on him because he’ll also need emotional support when he is down.

12. Expect and give understanding during disagreements

No doubt, you’d disagree with each other on certain things. However, don’t act like your relationship will end every time there’s a disagreement. When you’re the wrong party, understand that your man will forgive you for making a mistake. When he is the wrong one, don’t threaten to leave the relationship. 

Conflict is supposed to foster understanding, not tear your relationship apart.

13. Let your financial expectations be achievable

let your financial expectations be achievable

Keep your entitlement syndrome out of the relationship, especially when you’re not yet married to the man. He doesn’t owe you anything he isn’t willing to give freely. Have a source of income that brings in money for you regularly, so you don’t always put financial pressure on your man.

Offer to split the bills in and out of the house, and he would respect you even more. A man is encouraged to spend more on a woman who doesn’t expect much.


What are reasonable expectations in a relationship?

Acceptable relationship expectations include the need for trust, affection, honesty, and kindness. Expecting these qualities within reason is very much acceptable.

What are realistic expectations in a relationship?

Expecting that your partner would meet you halfway even though he doesn’t like what you want is one of the realistic expectations in a relationship. Also, giving consideration to the things you don’t naturally agree with is a realistic thing to do in your relationship. 

Is it normal to have expectations in a relationship?

Yes, it is. If you don’t have any expectations in your relationship, you’ll have no choice but to accept whatever your partner does.

What 3 things make a relationship?

Agreement, trust, and commitment. You don’t enter a relationship with a man you don’t love, but you can’t keep a relationship where these three things are missing.

What is a toxic relationship?

A toxic relationship leaves you confused about who you are, and what you want or deserve. A toxic partner makes you think you don’t have a choice about who should be with or deserve affection from anyone else but him. A toxic relationship takes over your life.


Setting expectations in a relationship is very important, without it your relationship is baseless. However, setting healthy expectations is what keeps the balance your relationship needs to thrive for years. 

Hopefully, the tips in this post will help you set more achievable expectations. Did you enjoy the tips? Please leave a comment below and share the post with a friend. 


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