This is the version I submitted to Family Share before it was re-edited and published on their site. See which one you like better:

Sometimes in a dating or marriage relationship, the commitment and happiness decline, and the relationship goes terribly south. When this happens to you, you wonder where the problems lie, and who is to blame. Truth be told, the fault is usually shared, though not necessarily equally.

Reflect on these characteristics of a devoted partner to see how you are influencing your relationship for better or for worse:

1. You are loyal.

You do not participate in anything that would arouse lust. You do not flirt with anyone else. You are upfront and honest with your partner about what you do every day. When things are hard, you stick by the one you love, rather than go to someone, or something, else for comfort.

Someone I loved wasn’t loyal to me, and it was really hard for me to trust him again, or even get over my feelings of disgust and betrayal. Trust can be rebuilt with change, but he sadly didn’t value our relationship enough to change.

2. You show affection often, in word and in deed.

You say “I love you,” kiss, hug, hold hands, and do sweet, tender gestures. You are thoughtful, and make holidays and occasions special. You spend quality time with your significant other, and do things that will strengthen your relationship. You are authentic, and do a lot of laughing and having fun. You reminisce about why you fell in love, and tell your partner often what you love about him/her. You share your dreams for your future together.

I know that without this tender affection, the romantic spark can totally go out.

3. You communicate with love, patience, and respect.

You encourage and uplift, rather than nag or criticize. You compliment and show praise every day. You only speak kindly of your partner to your friends or family. You do your best to express your thoughts, feelings and concerns without yelling, fighting or calling names. Should you falter, you sincerely apologize. You say what is bothering you, rather than turning inward and pushing the other away. You never let your pride be more important than your love.

Humility is something my husband and I are working on to improve our communication. It makes all the difference.

4. You value your significant other’s thoughts, feelings, and interests.

When you make decisions, you think of how they would affect the other. You respect your partner’s opinions, even more so than those of your parents and friends. You listen, and you validate. You would never ask your partner to do anything that makes him/her uncomfortable. You comfort when the other is sad; you support when the other struggles; you celebrate when the other succeeds. You appreciate the talents, skills and hobbies of the other, and try to learn from them. You are unselfish, and put your partner’s needs before your own.

In my marriage, I get most upset when I feel that my husband isn’t listening or validating my feelings. I feel so loved, though, when he just sits with me, listens to me, hugs me, and tells me he loves me.

5. You can be happy without your significant other.

You do not base your self-worth solely on the fact that you are in a relationship. You can feel confident, fulfilled and happy when you are apart. You do not get insecure, or worried when you cannot talk to or see your significant other at all times. You love yourself, and know that no matter what happens, you are special, you are loved, and you have so much to offer.

I have seen people be so clingy in their relationship, that they push the other person away. Then, if it doesn’t work out, they don’t know how to function. Please remember that your partner needs your trust, and also personal time.

6. You are doing your best to be a good person.

You choose your friends carefully. You want to associate with honest, unselfish, giving and loyal people who don’t break the law or play with hearts. You are not entertaining harmful addictions. When you make commitments, you keep them. You work hard, and you humbly recognize your strengths and weaknesses, and are constantly working to refine yourself.

Though I don’t have personal experience with all of these things, I have seen someone I love struggle as she dated a young man who did break the law, pretend to care more than he did, and break commitments. She would try so hard to be loyal and stand by her boyfriend, while he would flirt with other women, do drugs, and even steal.

I do have first-hand experience with what addictions can do to a relationship. One who has an addiction does not have freedom over his thoughts, emotions or actions. He is irrational, selfish, unproductive, dishonest, unkind, and sometimes violent.

7. You love God and put Him first.

You know who your Creator is, and you want to please Him. You strive to show you love Him and others by keeping His commandments. You take time to pray, read your scriptures, and ponder on all the blessings God has given you. You are a light to others as you serve them in love.

This quality has been the most valuable to me in my relationship with my spouse. When we both are striving to put God first, we really are more patient, loving, and service-oriented.

In contrast, my first marriage ended mostly because of sin and selfishness. I can promise you that individuals who strive for spiritual cleanliness, are much better suited for a healthy relationship.

Because nobody is perfect, you won’t do all these things perfectly all the time. However, if your relationship with your spouse or significant other is taking a dark turn for the worse, reflect carefully on the part you are playing. Do the very best you can, and if nothing changes, it may be time to consider a change. God bless you in your relationship and in your life.


 

Thank you for sharing!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.