An article written by
Ms. Farah Shafiq:

Whenever we think about choosing a life partner all of us have a list of habits and qualities in our mind that we want life partner to possess. It’s a very big decision to choose a life partner for our life. We can make a list of qualities that we would want our life partner to have. We have different wishes about our life partners. Mostly, our mind makes a list of characteristics about our partner, which includes good appearance, financially strength, positive attitude towards health, good personality and a strong educational background.

In this list we can also include the personal and family history of our loved one. Their religion, ethnicity and relationship history also matters a lot for most people when they go through this process. There are so many other characteristics that can be added to this list that you feel is more important for ensuring that a new relationship flourishes.

farah-shafiqMiss Farah Shafiq is working as Clinical Psychologist at Willing Ways Lahore. She did Masters in Applied psychology from University of the Punjab.She has done ADCP (Advance Diploma in Clinical psychology) from Centre Clinical Psychology, University of the Punjab, Lahore. She has worked as a trainee clinical psychologist at the child psychiatry ward of Mayo Hospital Lahore. Clinical work involved behavioural assessment with children suffering from all kinds of psychiatric disorders and learning disabilities. She also worked in Eman clinic Drug Addiction Institute, Lahore.

Editor:  Arman Ahmed

Every person can make their own list of factors according to their priorities. Some are unrelated to many people, while others show concerns that we have not listed here. 

Mentioned above are characteristics that we want to see in a person but in this article we will talk about what isn’t on your list. Much of the stuff that we need to have on our list, in addition to the priorities that you are consciously aware of. These are our shadow priorities— needs and desires that we are less consciously aware of but that represent other commitments in competition with our more conscious preferences. It’s not that one set of preferences is correct and the other is not, but rather that they each represent compelling and competing interests and desires that need to be fulfilled in order to satisfy our different kind of needs.


According to the psychologists, whenever they arrange a session with the couples for premarital counseling the first thing that they want to make apparent is that desire does not equal love. Love is truly based on commitment.

There are many factors that can play a vital role in choosing a life partner. Fear is one of the most horrible decision-makers when it comes to picking a life partner. Sometimes fear of being judged or talked about is the main factor that lead us to settle for a not-so-great partnership.

Externally-Influenced perspectives let other people play way too big a part in the life partner decision. The choosing of a life partner is deeply personal, enormously complicated, different for everyone and almost impossible to understand from the outside, no matter how well you know someone. As such, other people’s opinions and preferences really have no place getting involved, other than an extreme case involving mistreatment or abuse.The saddest example of this is someone breaking up with a person who would have been the right life partner because of external disapproval or a factor the chooser doesn’t actually care about (religion is a common one) but feels compelled to stick to for the sake of family insistence or expectations.It can also happen the opposite way, where everyone in someone’s life is thrilled with his relationship because it looks great from the outside, and even though it’s not actually that great from the inside. Such individuals tend to listen to and value the perspective of others over their own gut and tie the knot.

Some people are more concerned with the on-paper description of their life partner than the inner personality beneath it. There are a bunch of boxes that they need to have checked—things like the partner’s height, job prestige, wealth-level, accomplishments, or maybe even a novelty item like being foreign or having a specific talent. Everyone has certain on-paper boxes they’d like checked, but a strongly ego-driven person prioritizes appearances and résumés above even the quality of her connection with her potential life partner when weighing things.

If you want a fun new term, a significant other whom you suspect was chosen more because of the boxes they checked than for the personality underneath is a “scan-tron boyfriend” or a “scan-tron wife,” etc.—because they correctly fill out all the bubbles.