At first glance, the idea of asking relationship questions seems a bit unromantic, doesn't it? Isn't getting to know one another supposed to be spontaneous? However, think of it this way. You're getting to know someone anyhow. Therefore, why not make it fun and interesting? At the same time, you'll both glean valuable insight into each other.
On the other hand, if you've been in your relationship for a while, shouldn't you already know the answers to these relationship questions? Not necessarily. We always have a lot to learn about each other as human beings, regardless of how long we've known the other person.
What Are Relationship Questions?
Perhaps the best way to explain what relationship questions are (or should be) is to explain what they're not. First of all, relationship questions should not be "gotcha" questions that try to trap someone into an answer that you or they would find unappealing or disqualifying. Ideally, you and your partner aren't doing this to try to end your relationship. If you are, perhaps you have some relationship problems you need to sort out first?
In most relationships, a couple sort of rocks along getting to know each other gradually as things come up. "Oh, so there's that thing I didn't know about you! Good to know!" Relationship questions are designed to help you get to know each other as a couple in a more organized, deeper way. Instead of waiting for situations to occur, you're proactively probing your partner for the purpose of understanding him or her.
Are relationship questions for happy couples or couples in trouble? Yes. Couples in an already strong relationship can enjoy a deeper bond by using relationship questions as a tool. Couples who are struggling can use relationship questions as a path to understanding each other and, hopefully, steadying the ship. Relationship questions shouldn't replace therapy if it's needed. However, these questions can be used as one of many tools a relationship toolkit.
How Relationship Questions Can Strengthen Your Relationship
Relationship questions are exploratory tools for couples who want to learn more about each other. Asking a simple question seems like a small thing. However, it can open windows into a person's complexity that you won't typically see in day to day interaction. Every couple that has ever existed has (probably) sometimes run out of things to talk about occasionally. These questions can get the conversations rolling again.
Furthermore, some couples struggle with communication. Let's face it, some of the questions on this list aren't questions that come up in everyday conversations. However, if you're both committed to the process, posing these questions can be fun and enlightening. You'll discover new layers of your partner that you never knew were there.
Finally, relationship questions can give couples valuable tools and skills for talking about things constructively.
Methodology: Setting the Stage for Asking Relationship Questions
First, each partner has to feel safe during the process of asking relationship questions. If either one of you feels threatened in any way, this process won't be helpful. Decide together that you're committed to openness and honesty. Furthermore, commit to one another that there will be no judgment. Also, keep in mind that there are no wrong answers. You're asking someone something deeply personal about themselves. Their answers are how they genuinely feel.
How often should you ask relationship questions? Many couples find that asking one question per day at a set time, then a few minutes to discuss each other's responses, is a good format. This practice can go on indefinitely, and you'll both probably begin to enjoy it and even look forward to it.
Here is a suggested formula for relationship questions.
- 1First, Partner A asks their partner the question.
- 2Then, partner B answers the question.
- 3Next, partner A shares their reaction. For example "I never knew that about you," or "I had a feeling that's how you felt." Remember, no judgment.
- 4Finally, Partner B expands on their response.
- 5The process repeats with Partner B asking Partner A the same question and following the rest of the steps.
130 Relationship Questions
Before we delve into our list, here are a few tips for success with relationship questions. First, reserve deeper questions for a good time and place. For example, asking someone how they feel about having kids while they're on their lunch break isn't the best time for that.
Also, make the questions count. Quality is more important than quantity. Therefore, choose from this list the ones that are the best fit for you and your partner. Last, make sure you both have time to devote to one another when you're asking and answering relationship questions. Whether it's 10 minutes or an hour, that time should be set aside for the two of you without distractions like kids and TV.
First date icebreaker relationship questions
The questions in this section are great first date relationship questions. While the responses will give you a lot of insight into your date, they also serve the purpose of keeping the conversation flowing. Conversely, don't make it seem like an interview. Remember, keep it natural.
However, if you instantly hit it off with someone and you and they have a good rapport, there's nothing wrong with saying "Hey so I have this list of icebreaker questions that might be fun..." So in addition to being icebreaker questions, these questions could actually be fun if the person you're with is game. Otherwise, just keep it informal and slide a question or two into the natural flow of the conversation. Your date will invariably say "so what about you?" when they're done answering the question.
- 1Do you have a favorite TV show, and if so, what is it?
- 2What's the last book (or article) you read?
- 3Which do you prefer, staying at home or going out?
- 4Are you extroverted or introverted?
- 5Optimist, pessimist, or realist?
- 6How would you describe a perfect day?
- 7If you could have one of the following, which would you choose: personal chef, driver, maid, or trainer?
- 8Have you ever met a celebrity?
- 9If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?
- 10Would you rather change your past or know your future?
- 11Who is your hero?
- 12Dog person or cat person?
- 13What's the best museum you've ever been to?
Getting to know one another better
These relationship questions are for when you've established that you're officially in a relationship and would like to get to know each other better. However, keep in mind that these aren't meant just to gauge how to move the relationship forward. Presumably, you'd generally like to get to know each other better. So while some of these are about relationships, some are genuine "what makes you tick" questions.
- 14What are annoying habits that you see other couples doing that most irritate you?
- 15Which do you prefer for communicating, text or call?
- 16If you could fix just one world problem, what would it be?
- 17How well do you handle illness in a partner?
- 18What's the most important thing a relationship needs to be successful?
- 19If you could have picked your own name, what would it have been?
- 20What caused your past relationships to fail?
- 21If we met one of your exes on the street, would the interaction be positive?
- 22Do you enjoy public displays of affection (PDAs)?
- 23Can people of the opposite sex be platonic friends?
- 24What are the benefits of being in a relationship?
- 25Should gifts be memorable or useful?
- 26If you could live in another time in history, which would it be and why?
- 27Would you lie to make someone happy, and if so, where would you draw the line?
- 28List Element
- 29What's the most hurtful criticism you've ever received?
- 30What is your idea of a romantic vacation?
Exploring your pasts
We are who we are because of our life experiences. Going in-depth to get to know someone is fun and rewarding, for you in learning about them, and for them in sharing more about their lives. And vice versa. Most people enjoy talking about the life experiences that shaped them.
- 31What are some of the experiences that have made you who you are today?
- 32In your favorite childhood memory, who were you with?
- 33What's the best compliment you've ever received?
- 34Is there anything you've ever had to learn the hard way?
- 35What's the craziest thing you ever did as a teenager?
- 36How old were you the first time you fell in love?
- 37What's the most interesting thing about where you grew up?
- 38If you could do your childhood all over again, would you still want to grow up in the same place?
- 39What is your favorite memory of time with one of your grandparents?
- 40Which traits did you most like about your best friend in high school?
- 41As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
- 42What is a childhood tradition that you want to do with your own kids someday?
- 43Were you more impacted by your mother or your father?
- 44What did your grandfather or grandmother do for a living?
These relationship questions tend to be deeply personal, so be sure to pick the right time and place. On the one hand, these questions may be easy for some people to answer. On the other hand, another person may feel more passionately about the answers to these questions. Keep in mind our mantra throughout this entire list. There are no wrong answers, only different perspectives and opinions. Be respectful and non-judgmental.
- 45Is it important to you that your partner be the same religion as you?
- 46Do you hate anyone?
- 47Which is more important to you: to be successful financially or at peace spiritually?
- 48Is it okay to take office supplies home with you?
- 49Are white lies okay if they don't hurt anyone?
- 50What is your stance on abortion?
- 51Should adultery or cheating mean the end of a relationship or can it still work?
- 52Do you believe in evolution?
- 53What do you believe happens when you die?
- 54Do you believe in astrology?
- 55Were you spanked as a child, and do you think corporal punishment is okay?
- 56Do you believe people of different faiths are excluded from a positive afterlife?
- 57Can money buy happiness?
Family and friends
Your partner's relationship with family and friends tells a lot about who they are and how they were shaped. Likewise, sharing your answers to these relationship questions with them will help them to better understand you.
- 58Who do you call to tell when you have good news?
- 59Alternatively, who's the first person you call when you have bad news?
- 60What was your most memorable family vacation?
- 61Where are your ancestors from?
- 62How did your parents meet?
- 63How did your parents decide on your name?
- 64Have you ever had to end a friendship?
- 65Among your friends and family, whose job do you most admire?
- 66If you were stranded on the side of the road, who is the person you'd call for help?
- 67Were you close to your siblings growing up?
- 68Are you close to your siblings now?
- 69Have you ever lost anyone close to you?
- 70Who is your best friend now?
Making decisions on long-term relationships
If you are asking these questions, you are already in a relationship in which the two of you are exploring the idea of a life with each other long-term. Popping these questions in some of the earlier phases of the relationship would be awkward.
- 71How do you define cheating?
- 72What is your opinion on divorce?
- 73Who do you think should be responsible for which household chores?
- 74What makes you angry?
- 75Which lessons have you learned from your past relationships?
- 76Should people keep past relationship secrets personal?
- 77If a relationship is in crisis, do you believe counseling can help?
- 78Do you feel a couple's finances should be separate or together?
- 79How many children do you think you'd like to have someday?
- 80If we had children, how would you feel about one of us staying home with the children while they're young?
- 81Who should have the primary responsibility of raising children, mothers or fathers or both?
- 82How would we plan to proactively help each other with household chores and children?
- 83What kind of parent do you see yourself as being?
- 84Where do you see yourself five years from now?
"You and me" relationship questions
This set of relationship questions applies specifically to your relationship and how well each of you is doing in it. Avoid loaded or vague questions that can spark defensiveness. For example: "Are you happy with me?" or "Do you wish you had married someone else?"
- 85If you're having a bad day, do you prefer to be left alone to recharge or do you want me to try to cheer you up or talk it out with you?
- 86If you're venting to me, do you just want to vent, or do you want me to help you find a solution?
- 87What's one thing about me you'd like to change?
- 88Do you think I understand how you're feeling most of the time?
- 89Are you content with the amount of non-sexual affection in our relationship?
- 90Do you think we would benefit from more us-time or alone-time?
- 91If we're going out, what activity do you least enjoy?
- 92What is the one relationship deal breaker for you?
- 93Am I usually emotionally reachable for you?
- 94Would you rather go out or stay in for a date? (Yes, this is also a first date question, but people change over time)
- 95What are the biggest differences between us?
- 96How would we plan to proactively help each other with household chores and children?
Nurturing your relationship
These questions are designed to do a deeper dig on who you and your partner are as human beings. These questions are mostly for people who have been together for a lengthy period of time, although some may apply to other phases of the relationship, depending on the couple.
- 97If one of us only had one week to live, how would you want to spend it together?Which would you most enjoy: breakfast in bed or a candlelit dinner?
- 98In what way are you different now than you were when we first met?
- 99If we're going out, what activity do you most enjoy?
- 100What is your favorite memory of the last month/year we spent together?
- 101Have you remained true to your childhood self?
- 102If our home was on fire and you could only grab three things, besides the people and pets, what would they be?
- 103What do you think is my best quality?
- 104Besides our children (if you have children) and I, who are the three people in your life you'd risk dying for?
- 105What is one (harmless) thing about you that you've never told me?
- 106Hypothetically, if you and I were to start a small business, what would we be most successful at?
- 107So far, what has been the best moment in our relationship?
- 108In 10 (or 25, 50, etc.) years, what movie will we watch to reminisce about our "good old days"?
- 109Hypothetically, if you and I were to start a small business, what would we be most successful at?
- 110What do you fear most about getting older?
These are the old reliables that you can ask each other while driving in the car. These are also fun to do in "rapid fire" style, where one partner asks five-ish of these in sequence. Even if you think you know someone fairly well, their answers to these questions may surprise you. These are also fun and non-threatening in group settings, for example, a double date.
What is your favorite...
- 112Type of music?
- 115TV show?
- 119Candy bar?
- 123Board game?
- 124Subject in school?
- 125Scene in a movie?
- 126Thing to do that doesn't cost a dime?
- 127Teacher and why?
- 128Way to waste time?
- 130Toy as a child?
Use the Answers to Relationship Questions to Enhance Your Relationship
Asking even just one question on this list will open up whole new layers of you and your partner. Think about how you can use this experience to make your relationship even better. Also, there is at least one app for relationship questions. Check out the Happy Couple app for iOS and Android. Making relationship questions a part of your relationship every day can lead to more fulfillment and depth in your relationship. We hope this process opens new doors for you and your partner.
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