A lifelong commitment doesn't have to be perfect. Learn how friendship can save a mariage.

When you think about a lifelong commitment, what do you think about?

Is it a perfect home, perfect family or a perfect job. Maybe, it’s all three. Or, do you think of happily waking up to the next one you love?

If you’ve been in a relationship for a while, then you know this is not what a lifelong commitment is about. After being in a relationship for a while, you begin to let your guard down. Maybe, you don’t jump up and brush your teeth first thing in the morning. You start to put off the chores and indulge in a little more junk food.

So, what does this mean? A lifelong commitment is not perfect.

If you are expecting perfection in your relationship, then you are setting it up to fail. What about the friendship in your relationship? Just hanging out together having fun, and laughing together. So, before you make that plunge and jump into marriage, here are four things to think about:

  1. Is this your best friend? When I think of a best friend I think of someone that knows all of my secrets and still loves me. There is also mutual respect in the relationship. You know if you make a mistake you will be forgiven. This doesn’t mean that there isn’t room to grow, it just means you don’t have to be perfect.
  2. Once you make the commitment, you can’t escape. This doesn’t mean you have to feel like you are in prison. This just means you are committed to a lifelong commitment. This means you will both work at understanding your differences and make the relationship work. It is no longer one, it is two. This means, ‘we,’ make decisions together.
  3. True love means give and take. It’s easy to think of how your partner completes you. You love the way he looks out for you. and how he just can’t get enough of you. But, have you thought about what you can do for your partner? Are you making your partner happy? If so, how do you know?
  4. Set aside a weekly meeting. This is a great time to have that difficult conversation that you have been putting off. I know you really want to have it. Both of you need to decide on a topic to discuss. You each need a turn to talk about your perspective on the situation. Maybe, it’s about planning a vacation. You can’t seem to agree on a budget. Take some time to hear each other out. Then, make a decision that works for both of you.

All relationships go through highs and lows. Even people in the best of relationships, have arguments. What’s important is that you learn to repair after the argument. If you are repairing correctly, you should have a better understanding of your partner. This should help bring you closer and build a strong friendship.

If you are feeling stuck, then it’s time to talk to a professional. You can learn how to have a conflict discussion, without having the pain that goes with it. After a while, you will become more comfortable talking about things that you usually avoid.

Are You Looking For Help On How To Build A Lifelong Commitment In Your Relationship? You’ll Find More Of That In Relationship Challenges.

Lianne Avila is a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist. She has helped couples build a strong friendship, which can also help with the intimacy. For more information, please call (650) 892-0357 or email (Lianne @LessonsforLove.com).

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