How to Determine Compatibility with Someone New
When you’re looking for a new friend, it’s crucial to be able to determine compatibility. The same goes for friends with benefits and new long-term partners when you’re part of the non-monogamous community. You don’t want to spend a whole bunch of time getting to know someone without knowing the two of you will be able to click for more than a few dates, right?
Signs You Might Be Compatible with Someone
Most everyone understands what compatibility is on a fundamental level. On a base level, you can use these as reference points as early signs of compatibility to start with:
- You have similar interests
- You have similar values
- You have similar goals
- You have similar senses of humor
- You’re attracted to each other physically
These bullets are just a starting point. Compatibility can grow over time, so even if you don’t check all the boxes right away, that doesn’t mean you won’t be compatible in the future. Keep an open mind and give people a chance. You never know with who you might find a connection.
Compatibility in Non-Monogamy
Compatibility is critical in non-monogamous relationships because you’re dealing with multiple people. You want to ensure that everyone is on the same page and that there are no big personality clashes.
One way to do this is to sit with your potential partner(s) and discuss your expectations. Talking can be an enlightening experience and help you determine whether or not you’ll be compatible.
What styles of non-monogamy are you comfortable engaging in? Is it swinging? Do you prefer parallel relationships, or do you want to go all in and practice kitchen-table polyamory from the get-go?
Another way to test for compatibility is to go on a few dates and see how things go. Casual dates can be a great way to get to know someone without putting pressure on yourself. If things seem to be going well, you can start thinking about taking things to the next level.
Deeper Forms of Compatibility
Once you’ve determined that you have the primary signs of compatibility, it’s time to start thinking about deeper forms of compatibility. These things will make a relationship last in the long run. Some of the things that can help you determine deeper levels of compatibility include:
- Being able to communicate effectively with each other
- Being able to resolve conflict in a healthy way
- Being able to support each other through tough times
- You share similar life goals
- You have similar views on important topics like religion and politics
- Deal breakers that are non-negotiable
- How each of you wants to be spending time together
- How each of you experiences emotional intimacy
- The types of relationships you’re open to having (FWB, long haul, etc.)
These are just a few examples, but they should give you an idea of what to look for in a compatible partner. Remember, compatibility can grow over time, so even if you don’t have all of these things right away, that doesn’t mean things will always be this way. People’s life circumstances, personal wants, and relationship needs change over time, and effective communication is the best way to keep up and gauge where things stand.
What if I’m Not Compatible with Someone I Like?
If you find yourself liking someone but not being compatible with them, don’t despair! Compatibility is something that can be worked on. If both parties are willing to put in the effort, anything is possible.
The most important thing is to communicate effectively with each other. Discuss what you’re looking for in a relationship, and see if you can reach any middle ground about things that don’t line up. It’s also important to remember that people change over time, so even if you’re not compatible right now, things could always change in the future.
Bottom line: don’t give up on someone just because they’re not compatible with you immediately. People in open relationships can revisit connections that didn’t work out the first time later on, so long as everyone agrees. With a little bit of effort, anything is possible. If you can’t compromise about certain things, such as core values and long-term life goals, it’s best to stay friends or simply allow each other the space to move on.
What If I Only Agree to Something to Make Someone Else Happy?
Only agreeing to something to make someone else happy is a huge red flag. If you’re only agreeing to something (such as being in an open relationship) to make someone else happy, it will not work. Agreement to keep someone around will eventually lead to resentment and bitterness, and it’s not a healthy way to start a relationship.
Being honest with yourself and your partner is essential. Communication is the common ground that every relationship must be able to stand on. If you’re not comfortable with something, say so. It’s better to deal with these things upfront instead of acting like everything is okay when it’s not. Ultimately, it’ll lead to more problems.
If you’re ever unsure whether you’re compatible with someone, it’s always best to err on the side of caution and walk away. There is plenty of other fish in the sea, and there’s no point in forcing something not meant to be.
In short, compatibility is critical in relationships of any kind. Whether you’re looking for a new friend, a casual hookup, or a long-term partner, it’s essential to ensure that you’re on the same page. Once you’ve determined that you have the primary signs of compatibility, it’s time to start thinking about deeper forms of compatibility. These things will make a relationship last in the long run.
Being confident of what you do and don’t want in a relationship and being aware of what you have to offer someone else are the key elements to determining compatibility with someone. If a friend or new potential lover wants more of your time than you can manage, it’s best to set boundaries, so the other person knows what they need to agree to or walk away from.
If you aren’t sure what you want in a relationship or don’t feel like you know what you have to offer someone else, it’s helpful to search for a counselor or therapist to help you get yourself sorted.
I serve individuals who live in Houston, Texas and throughout the state, with a specialized focus on those who are polyamorous, non-monogamous, members of the LGBT+ community, or otherwise alternatively inclined. My mission is to help those who struggle to accept themselves or live authentically. Together, we will work to rewrite your future to let your true self out.
How do you determine your compatibility with new people in your life? Did we miss anything you feel is essential to know when making new connections? Let us know in the comments!