10 Basic Rights In A Relationship You Should Know Of

basic rights in a relationship
Spread the love

A healthy relationship is built on the foundation of equality and mutual respect. This means that everyone is entitled to basic rights in a relationship. However, most of us enter the rosy gates of love without being aware of this concept and turn a blind eye to it.

Whether you are a new entrant in the field of love or have been with your partner for years, there are some fundamental boundaries that should never be crossed. You have physical and emotional rights in a relationship and today, we are taking a detailed lesson on the importance of basic rights in a relationship and what they are.

Why Is It Important To Know Your Basic Rights In A Relationship

To simplify this matter, let’s assume that your relationship is the government and that you and your partner are the citizens. Now, just like the government provides rights to every citizen to assure just behavior and fair treatment, you and your partner also get basic rights in a relationship to ensure that you both are treated fairly by each other.

Knowing your basic physical and emotional rights in a relationship safeguards you from being abused or manipulated. You neither want to become the victim nor the perpetrator because you two have entered into a mutually agreed, loving relationship. Many people who are unaware of what they deserve end up struggling in toxic relationships without realizing that they can put an end to the torture. Hence, to avoid situations in which you feel trapped, stonewalled, or neglected by your partner, you should be aware of your basic rights in a relationship. 

10 Basic Rights In A Relationship You Should Know Of

These rights refer to the roles and responsibilities that you and your partner have toward yourself and each other. They can differ depending on the nature of the relationship. For instance, boyfriend and girlfriend rights can be different from husband and wife rights. However, no matter what the nature of your bond is, you still have the freedom to exercise your rights to maintain the health of your dynamic. Here are 10 basic rights in a relationship you should know of:

Related Reading: Dos And Don’ts For A Long-Term Relationship

1. The right to privacy 

One of the most basic rights in a relationship is the right to have your privacy respected by your partner. This means that your spouse cannot look through your emails, phone, chats, or even your mail if you do not consent or are not comfortable with it.

Ellen, a 24-year-old dancer, asserts, “It is fundamental to have privacy in a relationship. Even though you are committed, your sentiments, individuality, and your space remain separate. My partner and I make sure of that.” So if you ever find your partner snooping through your private chats, it’s a matter of concern. This is not just a boyfriend and girlfriend right, but also a husband and wife right. Just because you are married does not mean that you have to let go of your privacy in a relationship.

2. The right to boundaries 

The ability to set boundaries – emotional, physical, and financial – is one of the most significant rights that you should know of. This implies that you should be able to make decisions about what you want to do and what you don’t, what you’re comfortable with and what you aren’t. You can also avoid being under any kind of obligation. These boundaries are not just limited to emotional rights in a relationship but extend to sexuality as well.

One of my college roommates recently got divorced because of a lack of boundaries in her relationship. She said, “Husband and wife rights are not a concept my ex understood. For him, being a married couple meant no boundaries. There was absolutely no respect for mine. It became frustrating to be with someone who continuously forced me to do things I didn’t want to do.” 

3. The right to express disagreement

If you have ever been in a relationship, you are surely aware that there may be arguments, your spouse may act in ways that you don’t agree with, or they may even hurt your feelings. It’s natural to not be on the same page for many things, what matters is how you converse about it respectfully.

This is why one of the basic rights in a relationship is the freedom to express concerns and not remain silent. You ought to be able to express your opinions when you believe you have been harmed or when you disagree with anything. It is an extremely important boyfriend and girlfriend right, especially in a long-term relationship. If you do not exercise this right and bottle up everything, sooner or later your frustration will find some other outlet that can make matters ugly for you and your partner.

Newsletter Subscriber
Get your dose of relationship advice from Bonobology right in your inbox

4. The right to be in an adult relationship

You and your partner are expected to be many things, but becoming a parent to one another is not one of them. It is normal for this to be a relationship deal-breaker if one person turns out to be excessively needy and wants you to parent them. It is one of the basic rights in a relationship to refuse to babysit a fully grown human. You have to understand that their immaturity or childish behavior could be a part of their unresolved issues and you should not be expected to tolerate it.

Jace, a college professor, talks about his last relationship. He says, “Initially, the behavior was cute and endearing. But as the relationship progressed, I realized she is just plain immature. I would come home to find her in front of the TV with her lunch and breakfast dishes still in front of her. She would never make any decisions and I felt like I was parenting her all the time. I realized it is a basic boyfriend and girlfriend right to not put up with such behavior which helped me move on from that relationship.” 

infographic on basic rights in a relationship
These rights should be practiced by couples to have a healthy and happy relationship

5. The right to see and meet your friends 

If you’re in a relationship, there is no reason that you shouldn’t be able to hang out with your friends or speak to them whenever you want to. It is a basic emotional right in a relationship to have your own set of friends because you have an intimate connection with them. Your partner has absolutely no right to stop you from spending time with them. 

If your partner doesn’t like them, that is not a ‘you’ problem. Both you and your partner should respect the fact that other people in your life are equally important and they do not need to come with a stamp of approval from either of you. 

Related Reading: Freedom In Relationships – What It Means And What It Doesn’t

6. The right to be respected and treated as an equal 

You should have the right to respect and to be treated with equality in a relationship. For instance, you must be able to make decisions together, especially when they affect both of you. This right is important, as it shows you value and trust each other’s opinions.

It is a fundamental boyfriend and girlfriend right and a very important husband and wife right as well. The secret to a healthy relationship is showing respect for your partner’s point of view even though it might differ from yours. Constantly feeling belittled and insulted for your choices is a red flag in a relationship. A person who does not respect you or treats you as an equal is not right for you.

One of my colleagues recently shared the story of her toxic relationship. She said, “I went into a zone of complete self-doubt because my boyfriend constantly reminded me how pathetic my choices and tastes were. From my dressing style to my opinions about movies, he respected nothing. It was only after I talked to a close friend that I realized I have basic rights in a relationship. It helped me to stand up for myself.” 

7. The right to refuse physical touch 

Apart from emotional rights in a relationship, both partners also have physical rights. While you might trust your partner completely, refusing physical intimacy in a relationship is normal. You can find ways to say no in bed without hurting their feelings.

It does not mean that you are not attracted to them. Simply said, it means that there’s a chance you wouldn’t want to be touched on particular days or while you’re focused on something else. To ensure that your partner understands exactly what you expect from them, take the time to talk about this with each other. Your sexual and physical boundaries are sacred, regardless of your gender.

8. The right to go on dates 

With your own partner, obviously! One of the most important boyfriend and girlfriend rights and for that matter, even husband and wife rights, is the expectation to go on dates. Romantic date nights are so important, and if you feel that you and your relationship require it, you can have it on your list of basic rights in a relationship. This does not mean your partner has to treat you to expensive dinners. A romantic date can be something as simple as dressing up and enjoying a romantic night at home, or going out for a walk and ice cream.

basic rights in a relationship
Be aware of your rights in a relationship and seek advice from people you trust

9. The right to be wrong 

One of the basic rights in a relationship is the right to be wrong sometimes. You might make a mistake and say or do the wrong thing occasionally and it should be considered normal, and nothing to criticize or shame each other about.

It’s acceptable to make mistakes, and you should both be willing to forget and forgive. Holding grudges against your partner and acting upon them will only harm your relationship. Humans are not perfect and hence both of you have the right to mess up sometimes. Do not insult your partner when that happens. 

Related Reading: What Is An Enmeshed Relationship? Signs And How To Set Boundaries

10. The right to leave the relationship

A relationship is not etched in stone. One of the basic rights in a relationship is the freedom to leave when things get overwhelming, emotionally depleted, or toxic. You are in no way required to put up with demeaning behavior. For instance, when your partner is unfaithful, you have the right to leave without any obligation. It is important to remember that your self-respect is above any relationship. Even if your partner has done nothing wrong, but you realize you have fallen out of love, you have the right to leave the relationship because you will be doing both of you a favor. 

Having a partner comes with challenges and compromises. Setting ground rules and being aware of your basic rights in a relationship can help you establish a healthy and happy foundation with your partner in which both parties are happy. Remember, it is never wrong to practice your rights. 


1. What makes someone immature in a relationship?

People that are immature seem to care only about themselves. They detest compromise and reject the idea of considering other people’s viewpoints. They constantly seek to be in control. 

2. Can an emotionally immature person change?

With time and help, most emotionally immature people do change. Once they know how to deal with their emotions instead of projecting, they slowly begin to grow out of their immaturity. 

Signs That He Is Possessive In The Relationship

13 Friends With Benefits Boundaries That Must Be Followed

5 Signs You Are Entering A Wrong Relationship

Spread the love

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website.