What's Your Deal Breaker?

Oscar award-winning actress Mo’Nique, who has been married to Sidney Hicks for the past 25 years, claims they have an open relationship which wouldn't be destroyed if he were to have an affair.

Speaking on the Oscar night edition of The Barbara Walters Special, she said: "Could Sid have sex outside of his marriage with me? Yes. That's not a deal breaker. That's not something that would make us say, 'pack your things and let's end the marriage.' We've been best friends for over 25 years, and we truly know who we are. Often times, people get into marriages and they don't know who they're laying next to. I'm very comfortable and secure with my husband."

Mo’Nique’s take on marriage is an interesting one because she mentions the idea of “deal breakers”. Never heard of them? Deal breakers are circumstances which spell the end of a relationship. Bethany Marshall in her book Deal Breakers: When to Work On a Relationship and When to Walk Away says, “Deal breakers are not minor annoying habits such as your boyfriend's chewing with his mouth open or your husband's endlessly quoting sports statistics. Rather, they are qualities that erode your most cherished aspirations for a satisfying love relationship.”

We each have our own relationship deal breakers and it’s a good idea to identify yours. How? Marshall says first you must know what you hope to get out of a relationship. “Knowing what you want is important because all relationships are built upon arrangements,” she explains. “Some are financial arrangements. Some are emotional arrangements. Some are marital arrangements. Some are sexual arrangements.”

The key to a healthy and lasting relationship is to be on the same page as your partner when it comes to these “arrangements” and to be open and honest about your deal breakers. Marshall has these three tips for finding solid ground:
• Ensure you are both equally invested in the relationship.
• Grow your love. Try to gain a new experience, a new understanding or a new solution with each other so your relationship is always moving forward.
• Tell each other what's on your mind and respond thoughtfully.

So what’s your deal breaker? Share your thoughts!
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