Written by Evi Idoghor
How just important is a person’s character when it comes to relationships? Extremely! If you ask me. Character is something that can make or break relationships. If a person exhibits what we refer to in Nigeria as bad character—that is in other words— if a person is an antagonist in your life's story, then they would make for a horrible partner (although on very rare occasions that this isn't the case).
As such, the character a person exhibits is crucial for me when I think about relationships because I want to one day mesh well with the person I end up choosing to do life with. My persona is extremely chilled and laid-back—someone once referred to me as the Minister of Peace and Tranquility; I had no qualms with that. I am someone who is generally unproblematic and detests confrontation together with drama. If a man comes with attributes that could steal my peace, then I want no part with him.
Character can be defined as the mental and moral qualities, distinctive to an individual. From this definition found on Google, it is safe to say that a person’s character is who they are or who they believe themselves to be. As such, it will be extremely difficult for someone to change their character or behavior in a blink of an eye.
So, if you meet someone who is exhibiting certain character traits that you are uncomfortable with, that would be a good indicator that it is time to kiss that budding romance good-bye, or evaluate the situation further and make an informed decision.
How then can we become good judges of character?
From experience! If you are an adult and you are ready for a relationship, perhaps you have gone through certain experiences in your life. It doesn't have to be just relationship-wise, maybe some of your friendships, or work experiences must have shown you how people react or behave, and by now you should know what you like and dislike in people. If you still need help in deciphering what character flaws to look-out for in relationships, listed below are five of them which can mar your relationship goals.
1) Disrespect: one of my pet peeves is disrespectful people; they make my skin crawl. I cannot stand when someone is being rude or disrespectful to another individual. It becomes worse when the disrespected person happens to be older; I certainly cannot be friends with such people (no offense) because it wouldn't be long before they start disrespecting me.
So ask yourself, how respectful of others is this person I am considering? Are they rude to their friends, family, or co-workers? Better still how do they treat strangers or those who serve them? If the person is generally disrespectful, it won't be long before you start getting that short end of the stick.
2) Disloyal: this is crucial because you want to join your life with someone who will be there for you, who can defend you, and who can fight for you. If the person you are considering is flaky;
never keeps to their word, always comes up with excuses as to why they can't commit to something they already agreed to do, then that person isn't loyal. For a long-term relationship such as marriage to work successfully, you need someone who is loyal to go on that journey with you.
Some men and women already exhibit disloyal tendencies in the beginning. They might be entertaining other people while being deceptive, causing you to believe that you are the only cockroach in their cupboard. Pay attention to their actions; don't ignore any signs no matter how minute they might seem. Remember (if you want this for the long haul) you are making sure if this is someone you want to join the rest of your life with. What is a relationship without loyalty anyway?
3) Distrust: almost similar to distrust is disloyalty. Is the person you are considering a serious relationship with showing signs of distrust? Do you believe that this person will be committed to just you? Can you tell this person your deepest darkest secrets without possibly hearing about them from others later? If you answered no to all of these questions then wahala dey oh! (there is trouble).
I remember a boyfriend I dated in college who I told my secrets to, only they did not remain between the two of us. The entire Nigerian community knew my business. So if this person is a blabbermouth, nothing would change because you have upgraded their status to boyfriend or life-long partner.
Image courtesy of Unsplash
4) Lack of Peace: Gosh, I love my peace. Anyone who wants to come into my life and be a pain in my behind is not welcome. I always say that the world is chaotic enough, and we don’t need to come home and deal with more chaos. Find out if the person has anger issues—do you guys always butt heads? How do they react when they are angry? Do they throw things around or physically want to hurt someone?
Do they hit below the belt during an argument? Are they verbally or emotionally abusive? Are they more interested in winning an argument or resolving the issue at hand? Can they take a joke? Do they forgive easily? I believe these are important questions you should ask yourself which reveals a person's character before you go waltzing into their life.
5) Manipulation: does it seem like they always coerce you to do things just for their selfish gain? Do they always make you satisfy them before you can even think of yourself? If yes, then you are in for it if you choose to remain in that situation—manipulation is such a horrible thing. If the person you are considering is always guilt tripping you to do something for them, or even blackmailing you, then you have a huge problem on your hands. Talk to others; do not get to know/date someone in isolation—because sometimes the things others might see, you don't even notice them for reasons such as infatuation.
There are still a plethora of things that can break relationships as it pertains to a person's character, however, these are a few I wanted to share with you today. Take everything you learn about someone into consideration and if you discover that there are things that go against your beliefs personally, do not compromise on them hoping that the other person would one day change. A person only really changes when they are ready to change or when God touches their heart.
I hope you grabbed a thing or two from today's article and enjoyed it as much as I did writing it. Always remember to share your crazy relationship stories with us in the comment section, or if you have some insight, you can share it as well. Remember also to like, share & subscribe, to never miss an update.
Don’t stop here; click this link to explore the Relationships segment of the website. Are there any topics you would like for me to cover? Leave them in the comments section or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Images used in this article are courtesy of Unsplash