Dear Love | Becoming a Better Partner

Becoming a Better Partner

It’s funny, many times right before I am about to begin a post like this I find myself lacking in the love department. But that’s the thing about love, there are surely highs and lows and in-betweens and all those things. So at the time that I wrote down this topic down, I am sure that I had a very clear idea of where it was headed and now I have no idea where we may go. This is real life blogging right here! Ha!

But in either case, I think I may be love’s biggest fan. The complexity of it really intrigues me. The fact that I can completely dislike something that my significant other is doing, yet at the same time be completely enamored with his companionship is mind boggling. What I realized when I wrote this title down is that sometimes we think that we are stuck where we are, but we can continue to grow and become better partners to one another.

Right now I am in a space where we are about to make that next step of marriage and legit say “Hey, I am in this thing with you for the long haul.” And that’s a heck of a place to be. I mean we run around lusting after the ring, but let me tell you, when you get it on your finger you realize this is the real thing. So often we see it as finally wrangling the man in. Which is so not the case all the time. But we as women are making a commitment too that can be a little scary. All this to say that a lifetime is a MIGHTY long time and if we don’t make a commitment going into it to continue to be open to grow, then we are in some serious trouble.

Click to Tweet/// Without a commitment to growth, you may be heading for trouble. 

I’ll never forget some time ago, we mistakenly took a relationship class at our old church that was really geared toward married couples. (We were nowhere near thinking about marriage at the time, by the way.) BUT, the name of the class didn’t really designate that it was for married couples, it was like “His Needs, Her Needs,” and we thought, this would be cool. HAHA! But anyway, the instructor brought up THEE best point. She talked about how in the workplace you are supposed to receive training for the job at hand and then you are able to properly function in it. But, within a marriage, there is no training to be a wife or to be a husband. Most often we are in the dark feeling our way around and there can really be a lot to learn there. So she referenced the fact that in her marriage there has definitely been a training period of how to love her husband and vice versa.

I know, the word train can sound harsh, but let’s just be adults here for a minute. It’s important that we train or to use a better term, teach our partners how to treat us and what we want. We tend to think somehow that because a man or a woman has lived any designated amount of time, that they should automatically know things about how to relate to us in a relationship. But the reality is, no matter how many women they have dated or how many men you have dated, loving that specific person takes a training and growing period. There is no one size fit all preparation for a relationship.

Click to Tweet/// There is no one size fit all preparation for a relationship. 

What works for one person may completely not work for another and there is nothing wrong with that. Even if it’s something you think all men or all women should like. It’s silly to think that you can just recycle certain behaviors from your past into a relationship with a brand new person. There will undoubtedly be a training period in learning the likes, dislikes, insecurities and all the interworking of this new person.

You also may suck at it in the beginning. Ha! But it doesn’t mean that you should automatically give up on something if it is a good thing. For instance, I have an issue with volume control. I mean, I always have. I literally will be speaking at a respectable decibel and then all of a sudden I am a few notches above where I began. I had to learn that my significant other is extremely sensitive to my tone and my volume. So he literally can quickly think that I am yelling at him when I’m not. Now, I could just be like oh well, I don’t have volume control. Ha! But that’s something I could probably work on in general and I definitely can try to be sensitive to it when I am talking to him. But it’s something I work on. He has also grown to realize that I am really sarcastic. He catches it 10 times faster now and has learned how to just laugh off certain things without being easily offended.

This is the give and take that happens in real relationship. This is the process of really getting to know a person and learning the things that you can adjust to and maybe the things that you can’t. That’s an important evaluation to make in a relationship. In what areas can you bend and in what areas are you unwilling to bend? I mean there are certain things about me that just are what they are. Even me being loud. But just like I can control my volume in a work environment, I can control it in other settings as well.

We all have expectations and wants in our relationships. And to be able to field those for our partners, it will take some learning, some bumps and bruises, probably a few arguments or three, but all that is a part of living. So often we want the masterpiece, but we don’t really give the process the credit it deserves. It can be fun learning and growing with our partners if you allow it to be. I mean who we are now is so different than who we were when we first met. Be open to the process, know that everything you’ve learned before may have very little to do with this current relationship. Be open, be honest, and learn to communicate effectively and the growth that you can experience can be so rewarding together.

Click to Tweet/// So often we want the masterpiece, but we don’t really give the process the credit it deserves.

Have you rushed the process of learning what pleases your partner? Have you been able to effectively communicate to a partner your wants and needs in a relationship? Drop a line in the comments section.

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