Get your crackers out everyone, cuz this one's gonna be cheesy.
I need you all to look into the eyes of your partners right now and ask yourselves: 'Do you really love them? Like really?'
According to my grandma the answer is no. In her words:
'Women don't love their husbands. They love themselves. If the man is good to her, she'll love him. If he treats her badly, she won't.'
This is quite the philosophical statement, and there's quite a bit of truth to it. I mean can we really say we love anyone if in reality we only love what others give us emotionally or physically? But this is a topic for another day....
When I first got together with my husband, I'd continually go through this cycle of thinking I loved him, only to realise after a few months that the feelings I had before weren't real love at all. 'Now I really love him', I'd say. But as time would pass, I'd again come to the conclusion that my previous feelings were shallow- which makes sense. After all, relationships deepen with time. But at what point can you say you really love your spouse or romantic partner? I've been with my husband for five years now; and finally, I think I can confidently say that my love for him is the real deal. This is how I know and how you can figure out if it's true love.
1- You have stamina for their grossness
I've been blessed with a hygienic spouse. That being said, I have noticed that other men, even relatives, always seem to have worse smelling sweat than my husband. It's like farts. Yours always stink less than other people's. When you reach a point in your relationship where the gross side of living with another person doesn't bug you anymore, you know you've hit an important milestone.
2- You love them at their worst
This is a common, cheesy statement, but it's true. It also sort of links to the first point. In the beginning of relationships, you have a romanticised picture of how the person behaves, acts and looks. This is why it can be easy in the first few months or years to get disappointed or frustrated when you discover the negative parts of the person's character. With time though, you really learn to accept the person as a whole and at their worst. Like when they make mistakes, let you down, lash out, are feeling vulnerable and sensitive etc. This brings me to:
3- You love them even when you hate them
There are times when you get so angry, disappointed, hurt, you're ready to give up and part ways with your partner. During times like these, I like to imagine what life would be like if I did get a divorce and in those moments, it hits me hard how much I love my husband. Emotions can be so complicated in relationships and sometimes it can even feel like you hate your partner because you love them. You hate them because you don't want to be fighting, you want to be happy together.
4- You wouldn't want to be with anyone else
There will always be someone who is smarter, better looking, richer than your spouse. There may be others who, in other ways, are more compatible with you. True love is when you can recognise this and still choose each other and commit.
5- They're not their gender
This may sound weird, but after getting married, there came a point when I stopped seeing my husband as a man. He's just himself. A person. Family. In the beginning of our relationship, I was very aware of our gender differences. He was 'a guy' and I was a 'girl.' Relating to each other in that way does create the heated, romantic tension you get in the beginning of a relationship. But it can get in the way of having a deeper dynamic where you connect to each other simply as human beings.
6- You feel safe
To be yourself. To confront one another. To be vulnerable. This is so important. When you feel safe and respected, you know that no matter what problems you face as a couple, the other person is not intentionally trying to hurt you, or being malicious.
7- They complete you
This one's also true you guys! I'm all for being self-sufficient and independent, but when you're with the right person, you truly feel like a puzzle that has found its missing piece. By this I mean you pick each other up, work as a team and support one another on a physical and emotional level.
These are all the points I could come up with, but if anyone has something to add, I'd love to hear it. As always, thanks for reading and see you all next week! xxx