December 16, 2023

Why Love won’t Sustain your Relationship—& 22 Questions to Ask Yourself.

We all want to find real, lasting love.

And most of us do. Even those who claim that they have commitment issues or that love doesn’t exist might, in fact, find themselves one day with a long-term partner or a temporary lover.

Because let’s admit it. Love is a beautiful thing. When we meet someone and connect with them, our oxytocin levels escalate. We never tire of gazing into their eyes, smelling their skin, or listening to their soothing voice.

And so we take it to the next level. We either marry or move in together. We might even stay together for decades without any assigned labels. So yes, love is indeed beautiful, but unlike what most of us think, it is not enough.

Love brings us together, but it certainly doesn’t keep us together. This is where we go wrong. We think that love is a reason to stay with someone, even if or when things go south. Many of us stay in unhealthy, toxic, and abusive relationships because we assume that our “love” will fix the dysfunction. The feelings, the years, the memories, the sex, and the promises will resurrect our fading connection.

It took me many years to accept that in the beginning, love is only a chemical reaction. However, as years go by, the reaction in our bodies shrinks and might, in fact, entirely disappear. This is the “love” that brings us together, but once it goes away, we might be surprised to find that below all the feelings and the memories and the years and the sex there’s absolutely nothing. And so we continue to direct the course of this love ship, not knowing that it’s getting nowhere.

So love won’t sustain your relationship.

What will actually sustain it goes deeper than emotions, compatibility, sex, and laughter.

Your common values will sustain it. Your trust. Your empathy. Your support. Your respect. Your compromises. Your principles. Your willingness to listen. Your willingness to communicate. Your willingness to forgive. Your level of understanding. Your self-love. Your courage. Your gratitude. Your efforts. Your approach during conflicts and disagreements. 

Everything that’s not tangible will sustain it. You won’t feel it, but you will see it in your partner’s actions and yours. You will see it in your relationship.

If you want to build a meaningful relationship that lasts, ask yourself these questions:

1. Can I support my partner at all times?

2. Am I willing to listen to my partner without criticism, shame, and judgment?

3. Can I share how I feel openly, attentively, and honestly?

4. Is communication a priority in my relationship?

5. Can I hold myself accountable when I make mistakes?

6. Will I forgive them when they make mistakes?

7. Are we looking into the same direction?

8. Am I afraid of disagreement?

9. Do I prioritize self-care and self-love?

10. Am I ready to accommodate to my partner’s needs?

11. Do I reflect and learn from my mistakes?

12. Does my partner do the same?

13. Do I trust my partner?

14. Does my partner trust me?

15. Am I afraid of being vulnerable?

16. Do you feel secure in your relationship?

17. Do you understand that your relationship needs constant attention, effort, and re-investment?

18. If the circumstances of my partner change, will I stay?

19. Can I be patient in my relationship? 

20. Am I my partner’s best friend?

21. Am I kind to them?

22. Will I meet my partner’s needs?

~

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