When you keep getting stuck in one bad relationship after another, your views on love get distorted. Without even being aware of it, you start settling for less than you deserve and with time, you begin to think that this is how things should be and that you don’t have the right to expect more.

And then, the right person comes along. All of a sudden, all the pieces of the puzzle fall into place and you find yourself in a healthy relationship—a relationship you’ve never experienced before.

Obviously, you are happier than you ever even imagined being. But you are also learning a lot. This relationship opens your eyes and reveals some shocking truths about love to you.

1. When someone loves you, they will put the effort into being with you

The first thing that a healthy relationship will make you do is forget about all the bullshit you allowed yourself to believe in in the past. It will make you forget about justifications and excuses you made so you could keep on loving someone.

A healthy relationship will show you that if someone loves you, they will be ready to move mountains just to be with you. When someone cares for you, there won’t be second-guessing their feelings or the wrong timing—he will simply do whatever it takes to be with you.

2. Jealousy is not a sign of love

I won’t lie to you—even the healthiest relationships are not always jealousy-free. But it is one thing if your partner is showing you that he is afraid of losing you in a cute way and it is completely different if he is possessive or controlling.

Don’t lie to yourself—just because someone is jealous and doesn’t allow you to move on with your life properly without them, it doesn’t mean they love you. It just means that they think they own you and it is obvious that their ego won’t allow them to let you go.

3. Love makes you a better person but it doesn’t change you

When someone cares for you, they will accept you just the way you are, together with all of your flaws and with all the things they don’t like about you. They won’t love you despite your imperfections but because of them, because they will know that you wouldn’t be the person you are today if it wasn’t for those tiny flaws.

Yes, this person will inspire you to become better. They will push you forward and they will improve you in more than one way. But they will always respect your individuality and they will never even try to change the essence of your personality just so you could fit their standards.

4. True love requires hard work

Love isn’t a fairy tale. Things don’t miraculously work themselves out and you don’t get your happy ending when you defeat the evil witch.

Love isn’t always perfect. Sometimes, your partner will annoy the hell out of you and sometimes, the two of you will fight over some important or less important things. But everything is perfectly fine as long as you always find a way to work things out at the end of the day.

That is why you need to remember that love requires energy, time and effort. A healthy relationship doesn’t happen overnight—it is built and it needs more hard work than you might be aware of.

5. And it is a two-way street

It can never work out when there is only one person trying. Instead, it is a two-way street and it requires sacrifices from both parties involved.

It requires compromise and full devotion. It requires both of the partners to be willing to do whatever it takes to make this relationship as successful as possible. And it requires both of you giving exactly how much you are taking.

6. There is no love without mutual respect

Whoever told you that a person who disrespects you can love you lied. Because these two things are intertwined and cannot exist without each other.

And that is another thing that a healthy relationship will show you—that your partner has to respect you as a human being and as an individual before anything else.

7. Self-love is the most important form of love

One of the crucial things you’ll learn in a healthy relationship is the importance of self-love. Remember—the right person will love you so much that with time, you’ll start looking at yourself through their eyes. With time, you’ll see all of your qualities they keep seeing and you’ll fall in love with yourself the same way they did.

But most importantly—you’ll learn that you can never expect someone else to respect you or love you until you do so yourself. And that you can never love the other person with your full capacity until you grow to love yourself first.

7 Eye-Opening Truths A Healthy Relationship Will Teach You About Love