There are different kinds of relationships out there and different ways to define it. Here are some of the most standard and commonly observed relationships.
Everyone has relationships, from friends to family to acquaintances. Humans need relationships. We’ve all heard the phrase “Man is a social animal”. It is true, no man can survive without relationships as he is bound by the shackles of mutual dependence. I didn’t say this, Aristotle did.
An interpersonal relationship is a social connection or bond between two people or more where they mutually benefit from each other’s company. This bond is strengthened over time by sharing intimate secrets and details of one’s life with the other.
The world runs on connections and relationships, and to be an active part of society we must learn how to form meaningful relationships around us and also learn to maintain and cherish them.
5 Common Types of Relationships
Family: This is the first relationship most of us form naturally. This includes our parents, uncles, aunts, cousins, children, grandparents and so on. These bonds are usually given more importance in society.
Monarchies (a country that is ruled by a king or queen and the kingdom continues on with their children as rulers) are an excellent example of an establishment run by a family. Family run businesses are another example where people value familial relationships over others.
Sometimes due to a strong sense of belonging and concern towards another in the family, there might be a difference of opinion. This is normal, it is important to understand that everyone is allowed to have their own opinions.
We need to have open discussions and talk freely about what we want and the boundaries that we want to set.
Friends: These are the kinds of relationships that are chosen. It is usually between people that have the same interests. Friendships provide happiness and a sense of satisfaction. Friends help to reduce feelings of loneliness.
Some friendships feel closer than family. These friendships can form at school, college, even at work or at other places. People love to spend time with their friends because it is entertaining.
Acquaintances/ Platonic relationships: These relationships can be between a teacher and a student or between neighbours and so on. These relationships are easily classified as either ‘you know a person or about a person’ but you do not know them deeply.
In such relationships sexual feelings are not involved, therefore it is called platonic. Feelings of closeness vary in this type of relationship.
Romantic relationships: Most people seek these relationships throughout their lives. It involves a feeling of strong attraction towards another person. This type of relationship is the first to pop up in people’s minds when they hear the word ‘relationship’.
Romantic relationships can bring a lot of joy and satisfaction. It fulfils some of the basic needs such as companionship and sexual intimacy.
Early on, romantic relationships are met with a lot excitement and passion. But as time passes this excitement settles down and can turn into comfortability and even a long-term relationship.
It is important to form good relations at work. It not only helps with an efficient working team but it also provides some entertainment during downtime (work breaks).
There 6 main styles of romantic love or romantic relationships
- Eros: Eros is the passionate love between two lovers. Physical attraction is a big part of eros. It is intense and it represents a sensual and intimate type of love. ‘Love at first sight is something Eros lovers experience.
People often tend to feel a sense of euphoria with this kind of love. It is fast-paced and energetic. But a side effect of Eros is that as these new and electrifying feelings fade away, people tend to move on from the relationship.
2. Storge: A storgic relationship is a long-lasting form of love. The lovers prefer stable and committed relationships. This bond is formed based on trust, companionship, and emotional intimacy.
Friendships sometimes blossom into romantic relationships. This type of love is very comforting and familiar.
3. Ludus: The word Ludus has Latin origins and it stands for ‘games’. This type of love involves a lot of games and manipulation. People that prefer Ludic love prefer it when their partners also play games.
They love the excitement of the chase rather than the person. I love to describe this type of relationship as ‘Hot and Cold’. A person’s feelings may waver from hot to cold in a matter of seconds; one moment they might be gushing over you and the next they might be ignoring you.
These relationships are usually short-term and are focused on short-term goals. This mostly includes hookup culture.
4. Pragma: Pragmatics are known to logically approach all situations. They get the important details out of the way; details like “Do you want children?” or “Do our morals align?” and so on.
They believe that compatibility is the most important feature of a relationship.
Mania is a crazy, toxic kind of love. It is obsessive and always needs reassurance. These types of relationships can often cause emotional trauma.
It is an unhealthy form of love and sometimes this pattern of maniacal love can be addicting.
Agape is described as unconditional love. It is your partner and their needs before your own. Agapic love has high levels of relationship satisfaction.
Caring for their partner’s needs is their love language.
How to care for interpersonal relationships
- Care for their needs
- Communicate about boundaries
It is important to listen so as to make the other person feel valued and understood. Sometimes active listening solves half the problems.
Care about their interests and passion. Try to help out when they might need some help. This will make them feel less burdened.
Communication is key! Put forth your boundaries, so that your partner is well aware of them. This ensures that you will not have to enter any awkward or even potentially dangerous situations.
Relationships need work but it shouldn’t be hard work.