This post is written from some of my work with married couples. Many spouses will have different reasons for why they got married. One common reason I hear is that they were lonely and didn't want to be alone anymore or they fell in love. Couples will also have reasons for why they got divorced. One reason I hear quite often is that they don’t feel the love in the relationship anymore.
These reasons, while on opposite ends of the marital spectrum, have at least one thing in common, they are based on a feeling. Is it wrong to say, “I feel in love”.
Or to say, “I don’t feel in love anymore”
There is all kinds of research that tells us of the biological effects of being in love. That being said, does it make sense to base your marriage off of a feeling? Feelings are fleeting and can often be misleading.
Love is a choice and should not be simply be reduced to a feeling. Many marital vows include the saying of loving each other in sickness and health till death do us part. That is choice language. Can you imagine if your husband or wife's concept of love was based on a feeling and you had terminal cancer with very few days to live? Dare I say your spouse may not be at your bedside if their "love" was primarily rooted in feeling.
A husband who has a terminally ill wife makes the choice to love her, even if her youth has been taken. He makes the choice to love the intangible, her mind, her personality, her soul, her imperfections In this scenario, the husband has to base his love on choice, not feeling.
How does this topic connect to your marriage?
Being married for any length of time, you are going to have disagreements, arguments, maybe even hate each other. There will be significant temptation to harbor bitterness towards your spouse and get to a place where you don’t feel in love anymore. Your husband or wife is not perfect, nor are you. However, you get to choose to love them despite their short comings. This is every married person’s responsibility, this is not something that can be abdicated or displaced on to the other spouse. A spouse’s decision to love should not be contingent on the other spouse’s actions. You love, because you choose to love, not because you’ll get something in return.
Choose to love, it’ll make all the difference in your marriage.
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