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Basically, what I'm asking is: How do I say "I'm looking for a long-term relationship" in Russian?

As far as I can see, it would be something like:

Я ищу долгосрочные отношения.

However, отношения here is plural. I'm not sure if this is necessary. What about:

Я ищу долгосрочное отношение.

I am talking about a personal relationship between two people, like marriage - not business related.

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  • 3
    Aren't people in relations in English also, romantically speaking, and not in relation?
    – alamar
    Nov 22 '21 at 19:33
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    @alamar I believe romantically speaking, they are "in a relationship". "In relations" does not strike me as idiomatic, although I might be wrong.
    – Quassnoi
    Nov 22 '21 at 19:51
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    Don't worry, you will not be seen as looking for multiple simultaneous relationships. :) Nov 22 '21 at 21:01
  • 5
    A native speaker would say "постоянные отношения" or "серьёзные отношения". Nov 23 '21 at 7:28
  • 2
    For my native russian ear "отношение" is inherently unidirectional, but in this case you presumably want something bi-directional, so "отношения" (like, two of them, even thus it is probably not explicitly thought of this way). You would use "отношение" if you refer to something uni-directional like "Я хочу чтобы ты изменил(а) своё отношение ко мне.". Nov 23 '21 at 11:29
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Я ищу долгосрочных отношений

Отношения (in the sense of "romantic relationship") is plural in Russian, it's idiomatic.

In the singular, отношение means "relation" in the context of math, relational theory and the like. It can also mean "attitude", "respect" and has some other meanings as well, none of which apply to romantic relationships.

The verb искать takes both the genitive and the accusative, but the accusative implies definiteness, like in "I'm looking for the romantic relationship" in English. It's one of the rare cases where the concept of definiteness is syntactically evident in Russian. Since definiteness makes little sense here, you should use the genitive.

Finally, ищу чего-то is a viable but not quite idiomatic way of saying "I'm looking for" in Russian, unless you're actually searching for a physical object.

Depending on the context, it might be better to say надеюсь на долгосрочные отношения, жду долгосрочных отношений, нацелен на долгосрочные отношения etc.

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    "С серьёзными намерениями"™ :)
    – Zeus
    Nov 22 '21 at 23:51
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    при взаимномъ сочувствiи бракъ
    – Quassnoi
    Nov 23 '21 at 1:46
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    It really translates as "я ищю долгосрочные отношения". But "долгосрочных отношений" is also possible. Similarly here is a famous line: "Вы просите песен? Их есть у меня!".
    – markvs
    Nov 23 '21 at 7:20
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  • Я хочу серьёзных/постоянных отношений.
  • Мне нужны серьёзные/постоянные отношения.
  • Я в поисках серьёзных/постоянных отношений. This one would be suitable as a status on social networks etc. Unlike the previous two, this focuses on the current situation, rather than intention.

"Я ищу" is not idiomatic in this context.

"Я хочу серьёзного отношения" = "Я хочу серьёзного отношения к себе", i.e. "I want to be taken seriously".

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