Building Bridges

Issue # 3 of 43 

David LeClaire
By: David LeClaire

Rate Your Mate!

Answer as honestly as you can. Rate your partner by assessing points for each statement below based upon frequency.

Never/Very Rarely - 0 points

Often True - 1 point

Almost Always- 2 points

Your Partner:

1) Spends most of their free time with friends, or doing activities that don't involve you.

2) Your mate always is willing to sacrifice what you would like to do because you "can't leave your children."

3) You stay home a lot because your partner doesn't like to do anything or make plans for social activities together.

4) Your mate doesn't take the initiative to spend fun and romantic time together, just the two of you, no kids or friends.

5) Your partner spends most of their time with you talking about the children or work. When you are together as a family, they pay very little attention to you compared to the children.

6) Your mate regularly does things that help them become numb to their feelings such as drinking, drugs, tranquilizers, eating, etc.

7) You share important feelings with friends that you can't discuss with your partner because they won't understand or will get upset, angry, or hurt.

8) Your mate tunes out your efforts to communicate, only half-listening to what you're saying.

9) You consciously or unconsciously avoid being alone with your partner, doing things like working late at night, bringing work home, or over-scheduling yourself .

10) When you talk about sensitive issues - they usually get mad or hurt.

11) No matter how you do things, it never seems to be right or good enough for your partner.

12) When your mate gets angry, it takes them a long time to get past it before they forgive you or are loving again.

13) Your partner argues often and easily gets frustrated with you.

14) Your partner seems to criticize you a lot.

15) When you are together it seems that often your partner says things that leaves you feeling they don't respect you.

16) When you go to restaurants, long drives, or on vacation together, they tend to get irritated with you for some reason or another.

17) Because of their appearance or the way they treat you, it's not unusual to find yourself desiring or flirting with people other than your partner.

18) When you do have sex, even if it's pleasurable, it doesn't feel fulfilling. They are pretty predictable in bed.

19) Your mate avoids having sex or intimacy with you or usually leaves it up to you to initiate.

20) They neglect their appearance: i.e.: excessively overweight, doesn't dress attractively for you, or neglects their personal hygiene.

21) You feel your partner takes you for granted.

22) You have to repeatedly ask to get help around the house with the chores, kids, etc.

0 to 15 points - Congratulations.
You have a pretty decent partner in most areas, with maybe just a couple of areas that need a little work to avoid future problems.

16-30 points - Chances are you are not in your first six months of bliss together. While it may not be time to panic, address the subjects in which your partner scored 2's or there seems to be a re-curring theme. A "tune-up" is definitely in order since your relationship may not be enough of a priority or your partner may need to renew their respect and appreciation for you!

31 - 44 points - Danger Will Robinson!
I suggest looking into couples counseling. You have trouble brewing on all fronts! Your relationship is in trouble. You are on the road to either a dead relationship or to separation. If you want to save it, tell your partner that you need and want outside help and are committed to making it work. You both will need to put in a lot of effort to survive this.

* This questionnaire is an edited version of the "How strong is your relationship" quiz from the book "Bridges To A Passionate Partnership."

David LeClaire has spent much of his time teaching at community college and private school, and lead communications training for Fortune 500 companies. Now a popular and active Seattle area sommelier, this graduate of Central Michigan University led seminars for a wide variety of organizations. LeClaire is the author of "Bridges To A Passionate Partnership." He can be reached at

Building Bridges Table of Contents

Text © 1998, David LeClaire. Part of the original Sideroad.
More expert advice available at