Emotional maturity is important at all levels of relationship. It becomes a burden when your partner lacks emotional maturity.

According to Monique Judge, editor of The Root, “emotional maturity is the ability to handle situations without escalating them. Instead of seeking to blame someone else for their problems or behaviours, emotionally mature people seek to fix the problem or behaviour. They accept accountability for their actions.”

However, Emotional immaturity according to Samantha Burns, relationship counsellor “can reflect a lack of depth and understanding about one’s own emotions, inability to communicate and process things related to the relationship, as well as lack of empathy and ability to understand your partner’s emotional experiences.”

Below are some ways to become emotionally mature especially with your partner:

Be assertive
Always choose assertive communication over passive-aggressive behaviours. Anytime you feel upset or disappointed about something, learn to express your ideas in an honest, direct, and respectful way. With this approach, your relationship can only improve. As a partner, encourage them to express their feelings without being rude, forceful or demeaning. Subsequently, they’ll adjust and improve.

Encourage apologising
Anytime your partner calls you out on something you did or whenever conflict arises, ask yourself these questions: “What could I have done better here?” “Would the best version of myself have behaved like this?”

Mature and confident partners are the ones who have the courage to question themselves, recognise their mistakes, and apologise. Note that apologizing for mistakes will not make your ego lesser, rather, it shows you’re someone who can take responsibility for your actions.

Mind your words
Anytime you are about to say something you could regret, think about how it could damage the relationship in the long-term. If you still feel upset, create some space from your partner, write down how you feel, and then allow yourself some time to cool off. You can even write down these words, write all you feel and delete them later. When you’re calm, you can discuss with your partner in a manner they’ll also appreciate.

Avoid excess jealousy
In a relationship, it’s okay to be jealous. However, it becomes toxic when it is in excess. To avoid excess jealousy, work on your self-confidence. Always remember that if your partner is with you, there is a reason.

Trust your partner and remind yourself of your own value and why they chose you. Be the person they fell in love with.

However, if your partner gives you clear reasons to be jealous, like lying and blatantly flirting with other people or cheating on you, respect yourself and walk away.

Relationships are full of ups and downs, they’re also avenues to be a better person.

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