So, having established that I know zero about retaining a relationship, I know lots about how to lose one.
Here's what not to do (and few of these are aimed at you, dearling)
Don't be stalky
If the guy, gal or goat you are interested in indicates disinterest, step away. Do not share sexual comments with them (this may be okay with the goat), do not tell/allow them who they may be with instead, simply step away. It's much more classy.
Do not treat them as less than friends
Seriously? Let's just be friends?
Friends give each other much more leeway and tolerance than significant others often do.
I'm not sure about the rest of you, but I don't want to commit to somebody who isn't my friend.
Do not, I repeat NOT, give their fecking pets away
Okay, accepted, I'm not the best gal in the world at staying around to water and feed.
BUT, do not give the pet away without consulting me. Just don't.
The first engagement did this and, in justification, said he had tried to call me. He probably did - I was in a Korean hospital recovering from a subdural hematoma and surgery and did not have my phone or mind. When I regained both, I was pissed.
As were the best friend couple who owned the brother of the Sukhi cat, and the father of the best friend whose cat had birthed Sukhi. Any of them would have happily taken her. Instead, she was given to a friend of the new girlfriend (yep, apparently he tried to call me about that also) and none of us had visiting rights.
I'm not going to talk about the pup or the next cat, but it shows how much you consider my opinion if you don't consult me (did I mention I view engagements and not-quite-engagements as testing periods?).
Do not be mean
There's enough of that in the world. It's not what anyone needs to come home for.
Do not expect the significant other to complete you
If you can't manage that yourself, you're kinda lost.
- more to come, have to go collect the visa, lunch, ship stuff, dinner . . .