What Is the Meaning of Commitment in a Relationship?



Life is so much more than material luxuries. All the money in the world cannot buy you the things that matter. For, at the end of the day, your loved ones are your most significant assets. Finding support in your spouse, friends, and family is not a sign of vulnerability. With age, we learn to interact, build relationships, and network with people. Trust, commitment, and honesty are the glue binding your relationships together.

So, if you are wondering about what commitment means in a relationship, then this is the right place for you. Read on to know all about the significance of commitment in any relationship.

What Does Commitment Mean?

Commitment is not a cakewalk. It takes strength to put in the effort to make any relationship work. Now, most of us associate engagement with marriage or a romantic association. And in the modern-day dating culture of virtual apps and hook-ups, commitment is an alien concept.

Well, let’s clear a few things before we begin the discussion on commitment. People in non-romantic relationships can also share responsibility. And if you share the romantic commitment, it doesn’t necessarily have to conform to societal conventions. You are free to decide the rules of your relationships, provided its consensual.

How to Build Trust and Commitment?

Commitment and trust are the two vital pillars of any relationship. It means that you give your word to the other person or entity. Commitment refers to exclusivity, transparency, and honesty. You share a piece of yourself with the other to the point that they become an extension of yourself.

Connecting with someone also inculcates a feeling of empathy. You put yourself in the other person’s shoes, thinking things through their perspective. It makes a person more sensitive, kind, and thoughtful. You can be committed to a friend, a family member, your spouse, or any other being.


Commitments are all about setting your priorities straight. Everyone has to deal with multiple things, people, and responsibilities. And each person attaches different meanings to these aspects. Your commitments reveal how you view your life and surroundings. It all dumbs down to what is the most important thing to you.

Dating, marriage, and romance involve commitment because people want validation. You commit to a person, i.e. you become exclusive to each other. This doesn’t just mean physical exclusivity, but also mental and emotional involvement. Both parties must agree explicitly to be unique to each other.

Faith and Trust

Being committed to someone means that you trust them implicitly. Relationships without trust hold no meaning or value. What’s the point of being with someone if you cannot express yourself truthfully? We show different versions of ourselves to different people. And if we were to follow that logic, it is near impossible to be transparent with someone. Commitment is a two-way street. You cannot give your all without expecting the same in return.

It is natural to want the other party to be as invested as you are. Unconditional love and selflessness are utopian concepts. Don’t try to set unrealistic pedestals for your relationship. Commitment gives you the right to expect your partner to be the best version of themselves. You create a space to grow together and develop holistically.


This is an obvious point but an important one, nonetheless. You need to be transparent with your partner. Don’t resort to lying or hiding facts from your better half to get out of the sticky situation. Confrontations are challenging but so much better for both of you in the long run. Communication is the key to a happy relationship. Commitment is not always equivalent to monogamy. You can have multiple partners and still hold your commitment.


Being in a committed relationship is not all rainbows and roses, though. You learn to compromise, adjust, and sacrifice things to make the other happy. Simple everyday gestures like cooking breakfast, taking a day off work speak volumes. With time, you learn to share the good, bad, and ugly. Commitment is about taking care of your partner through thick and thin. A companion does not accompany you through the easy paths, and they guide you through the obstacles as well. With commitment, you learn to depend on the other person(s). You can count on this person to be there for you. Show your love not just through flowery words but tangible actions.

Is Commitment Mandatory?

It might come as a surprise to many, but commitment is not everyone’s cup of tea. Not everyone is comfortable with the idea of spending their entire lives with one person. And that is completely fine, provided you are honest about it. We can no longer conform to the cis heteronormative narrative. Different genders, sexualities, and orientations exist in the world today.

Hence, we cannot expect everyone to fall into the same binaries of male-female relationships. Our identities, physical or otherwise, exist in a spectrum. So, it is okay if you cannot relate to the conventional idea of commitment and relationships. There are case studies that explore the idea of open relationships, polygamy, and other concepts. Club culture, virtual dating, hook-ups are the norm of the day. However, these ideas also include a form of commitment. You need to be honest with yourself and the people involved. It is essential, to be honest with your partner(s), and mutually decide what you want your relationship to be.

The Bottom Line

Commitment is not a scary word. Yes, I understand that people with psychological issues or a history of trauma might have trust issues. It is difficult to surrender yourself to a relationship and give your all. Finding and building valuable relationships is not a cakewalk. Take your time, think through things carefully, and when you find something worthwhile, hold on to it.

Mary Jones
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