Updated: Sep 5
Ultimatums do destroy relationships and shake the mental peace of both the partners but, there are still some ultimatums that can actually be healthy in relationships. In this article, you will find 10 ultimatums that will help you to bring peace in your relationship, again!
By owning your confidence and respectfully communicating your need and values to your partner, you are laying everything out in the table for them. If they choose to work with you improving a certain issue or behaviour, then the relationship can move forward.
This happens through a positive ultimatum, which is the one given during a calm moment where both of you are listening to each others feelings and being respectful towards it.
Well here we are talking about all kinds of relationships and the ultimatums that are actually healthy and good for any relationship! Speaking of healthy ultimatums, I have a personal experience to share - Back in the day, when I was going through some issues in my family life, I found my best friend starting to distance herself. It seemed to me that my issues took a toll on our relationship. We would hardly speak to each other let alone communicate. We kept bickering and arguing for no good reason. I often found myself lonely and crying myself to sleep. She started ignoring me and stopped taking my calls. She wouldn't respond to my messages anymore! All of this made me angry as I was hurt by her actions and felt abandoned and betrayed. It would get very awkward for our mutual friends to be around us whenever we would meet at social gatherings, as they found us cold and complaining about the other.
And the obvious happened. We drifted apart. Yes, I had a break-up in friendship! And my Mentor, who is also a Psychologist, told me that break-ups in friendship are for real and equally painful as the ones in romantic relationships. So, she suggested that I allow myself some time to heal.
It was after a few weeks, when I had allowed the entire issue to rest that I could gain some insight into what exactly had happened. I learnt that my friend was going through a major life crisis and my constant complaining only added to her misery. Such learnings about the reality and many more helped me get a hang of everything and chose to work with the problems we were facing. And as the days were passing by, we could find our own 'new normal'. We were respectful to each others' problems and gave ourselves ample amount of time to heal instead of rushing things. So, here's what I always remind myself: "If you wish to work on something and actually work on it, you will definitely succeed!"
When I shared this episode with a counselor at EduPsych, I realized that neither me nor my friend could recognize our own boundaries, let alone respecting each other's. It only made sense that we were misunderstanding each other as we weren't voicing our own troubles and in the process, when one of us went ahead and shared a part of her difficulties, the other couldn't take the help of a healthy ultimatum to help save the situation at hand and even the relationship.
That's when I came across a post on EduPsych's Instagram page, check here, that helped me partially and even draft this blog. Here are some ultimatums that are actually healthy:
1) Ultimatums can be confidence boosting:
By owning your confidence and respectfully communicating your needs and values to your partner, you are laying everything out on the table for them. If they choose to work with you on improving a certain issue or behaviour, then the relationship can move forward.
2) Identify positive ultimatums:
A positive ultimatum is given during a calm moment where both of you are listening to each other's feelings and being respectful. A healthy ultimatum can also be based on what the actual intent of the conversation is: Are you threatening your partner? Or is the ultimatum given after multiple chances and conversations about the issue?
3) ''I need time to get ready''
Even something as small as ensuring your partner understands your needs while getting ready to go out can cause a lot less strain on your relationship. If your partner continues to limit the amount of time you have, you can let your partner know that they can go out without you. While not everyone will share the same priorities, its key to respect what is important to your partner, and vice versa.
4) ''When you message your ex, it makes me feel hurt''
Sometimes we test each other's boundaries so ultimatums reinforce them so that they are clear and understood by both parties. It's important to remind ourselves that people don't hurt us on purpose even when they are breaking our boundaries. When it comes to confronting your partner about contacting their ex, if your partner does not see your side, it's up to you to decide if this is a deal-breaker. By explaining to your partner how their actions make you feel, you can address the situation from a place of genuine concern, as opposed to anger and resentment.
5) ''We don't always need to watch TV together if we want to watch different things''
Remember, when you are giving an ultimatum for your partner, you can't control how they will react and if anything will change. Instead, remind yourself that this ultimatum is for you - knowing your worth, how you should be treated, and what you deserve out of a relationship. Think of an ultimatum as self-care, not trying not control another person. You are issuing one because it's the only way you believe that you can take care of yourself.
6) ''Either we are exclusive, or I have to think about if I want to continue this''
Above all, the conversation should be about you and your partner coming up with a solution to improve your relationship, or defining the level of commitment you are both willing to make. If your partner won't make the kind of commitment you want, you may be ready to move on. By clearly and calmly explaining to your partner that you want to be exclusive, you are laying your expectations out. While this ultimatum may be a tough one, it is a proactive way to stand up for what you want.
7) ''We need to be able to save money''
Finances and money is a tricky subject to address, albeit an important one, which is why it is so vital to ensure you are addressing any financial concerns or issues in a calm way. The way you do it is key. If you come off as loving, but extremely concerned about your problem, you may have a better outcome. By being upfront about your financial expectations - especially if you share bank accounts - you are starting a conversation about ground rules that will work for the both of you.
8) "We need to communicate more openly"
Communication is important in any relationship. If your partner isn't communicating proactively or you find them hiding something from you, it's important you have this discussion about the importance of communicating. Let them know you expect open, honest, and proactive communication on a regular basis. Because that's important to keep the relationship strong. It's also a gateway to transparency, which is another important thing in relationships.
9) "We need to spend quality time together"
A relationship can't sustain if you two are not spending time together. Yes, both of you are busy in your own life. You have a bunch of things to do. But that's not a good excuse for not spending time together. For starters, if it has been a while since you and your partner have spent some quality time together, communicate this as an issue with them. Next up, come up with a solution- be it going on dinner dates every weekend, having movie nights, or going on long walks every evening.
10) "We need to respect each other's personal space"
Yes, you two are in a relationship. But you're still two different individuals with unique personalities. You both have separate interests, ambitions, and preferences. If your partner isn't giving you the personal space to explore your individuality, talk to them about it. Communicate with them ‘why’ and ‘how’ both of you need to respect each other's personal space.
Get Help from Experts
From my experience, I've come to an understanding that sometimes it's best to talk to an expert offering online relationship counseling services about an issue at hand. I was happy to learn that there are so many experts at EduPsych who are relationship experts - they not only master romantic and marital relationships, but platonic ones as well! You can also create a happy relationship with their help. Click Here.