Do You Need a Relationship Contract?

A Relationship Contract might save you headaches and heartaches further down the road.  But what is it?


Like a work contract, a relationship contract clarifies for both parties the expectations involved in a relationship. Such a contract spells out how couples will handle important issues, and thus minimizes future conflicts when things are clear from the get-go.

Some important items to be considered:

  • Romantic needs
  • Sexual needs
  • Division of responsibilities
  • Nature of exclusivity
  • Boundaries around family and friends

What the contract might specify (not an exclusive list):

  • Number of date nights per week
  • When and how often to check in with each other
  • Sexual needs (e.g., have sex twice a week)
  • Nature of exclusivity (e.g. no alone dates with the opposite sex)
  • Connection time (e.g., screen-off during date nights)
  • Financial arrangements (e.g., bills are split evenly)
  • Family obligations (e.g., family dinner once a month)
  • Responsibilities (e.g., who makes holiday arrangements)