Loving relationships – between the essential and the impossible Conference Paper uri icon


  • Intimacy is the feeling of closeness and connectedness in a relationship, but human beings don’t have the same values along the continuum of life. This study aims to recognize values considered essential and impossible to live a loving relationship. A quantitative, descriptive and analytical study was developed through a questionnaire applied to 233 individuals (82.5% female / 17.5% male, 51.7% single), aged between 16-76 years, from north and central Portugal, divided In two classes: 31% young (16-25 years) and 68.7% adults (≥25 years). Results show that the values considered essential in loving relationship are in descending order: «trust» (226-96,9%), «dialogue» (226-96,9%), «tenderness» (225-96,6%), «intimacy» (225-96,6%), «loyalty» (224-96,1%), «freedom» (221- 94,8%). «Humor» is considered essential by the respondents (221-94,8%), but younger people attribute it a significantly higher importance (p = 0,001) than older people. As values that make a relationship impossible, the majority of sample, considers «disrespect» (228-97,9%), «mistrust» and «lack of dialogue» (226-96,9%), «violence» (222-95,3%), «lack of love» and «betrayal» (220-94,4%). For younger, «shyness» (p = 0.007) and «shame» (p = 0,028) are significantly inhibitory, and for adults it is «prejudice» (p = 0,028).Younger and older people have different perspectives about what is essential or impossible in a loving relationship.

publication date

  • January 1, 2017