Last Updated on September 1, 2023 by Lori Pace
Transactional relationships are those that are based on mutuality and need. Both parties in a transactional relationship expect to get something in return for their investment. These relationships do not assume that you should expect anything in return for your investment.
Transactional relationships can be compared to business connections in that they are based on how much one person can get from the other and not what they can offer.
Characteristics of Transactional Relationship
Transactional relationships are something that we all have at some point in our lives. However, if you place too much emphasis on receiving and not on loving, trusting, and caring, you might end up feeling disappointed and alone.
Signs of Transactional Relationship
The Emphasis Is On Getting, Not Giving
Transactional relationships are therefore centered around self-benefits. The question is “What am I getting out of this?” When one party fails to fulfill their end of the deal, the bond is usually broken. These relationships are often unstable and don’t last very long.
Both Sides Have Expectations
In a transactional relationship, both partners have expectations. They may be looking for power, money, legitimacy or some other thing.
Quid Pro Quo: Benefits are the main focus
Transactional relationship is built on the principle of giving and receiving. These relationships are similar to business connections. There is more emphasis on who brings what and what the person can gain. If there isn’t reciprocity, or if the goals and expectations of both partners don’t align, transactional relationships can cause resentment.
There is Resentment
Because of the potential conflict between partners’ goals, transactional relationship can be challenging. This can cause partners to have different priorities and become irritated.
One partner might devote all their energy and time to their family. The other partner may be focused on business at the same moment, missing out on family gatherings and events, causing anger and conflict. Additionally, if one partner is too generous, it can lead to anger and resentment.
Transactional Relationship vs. Authentic Connection
Arranged marriage is one of the most common types of transactional relationships. It is still common in Eastern cultures. This type of marriage is where love, attraction, compatibility, and status are less important than money and future prospects.
Many romantic relationships in Western society are transactional. Even if you don’t choose your partner solely on their social or financial status, it can be attractive to have a relationship with someone who can provide financial stability, at least subconsciously.
Transactional relationship can be a good thing. However, couples who are in them will give and take. They tend to value their own self-interest more than the real, genuine connection that is characteristic of relational, conscious relationships. Transactional relationships are more likely than conscious relationships to be manipulative.
Couples who are conscious of their partner’s feelings, needs, and perspectives, on the contrary, are aware of each other. Both are committed to strengthening their relationship and will give to each other without expectation of anything in return.
Transactional Relationship & Male Loneliness
Most men were raised according to masculinity norms. They learned that they should be strong and dominant, control their money and hide their emotions.
Some men see their relationships as an exchange for goods. For sex and business, there are many opportunities to make money. A man must be able to dominate others and make lucrative deals in order to rise in society and earn his position.
This transactional metric of being a man can be learned early in life and can lead to a loss of real connections, isolation and loneliness for men.