Embracing Not Changing: SIGNIFICANT OTHERS

Embracing Not Changing is a four-part series, which focuses on embracing yourself, your family, your significant others and your friends for who they are.

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After being in a relationship for over 13 months now with a man I happily and humbly call my boyfriend, I realized how unique my relationship with him is compared to the ones I have with my family and friends.

But along the way, I learned a lot about what it truly means to embrace, accept and love my boyfriend for who he is instead of who I want or expect him to be.

Though the most common and important one is to not go into a relationship thinking you can change your S.O., there are other ways to love your S.O. to the fullest.

#1. Don’t compare him/her with your ex.

Yeah, it’s totally possible that you have good intentions when you say that your ex never did that for you when your S.O. does something extraordinary like surprising you with a thoughtful gift.

The thing is, it can rub off the wrong way for many guys. Since men are performance-driven, it can either be a motivation or a discouragement, especially if they’re not sure that they’ll be able to top that gesture the next time around.

Stick to saying, Thank you, and reciprocate the gesture, since a relationship requires give-and-take in order for it to be long-lasting.

#2. Sincerely lift them up verbally behind their back.

The problem with venting to our friends about conflicts within your relationship is that you’re giving a bad image of your S.O. when in reality, they probably aren’t.

It’s easy and almost automatic for us to praise and encourage our S.O. when they’re present, but it takes more effort and discipline to do it when they’re not there.

But only speak highly of them if you genuinely feel that way or if it’s actually true. Your words will mean absolutely nothing if it doesn’t reflect your S.O.’s true character .

#3. Disconnect from social media.

You’re probably wondering what the heck social media has to do with loving your S.O., right? Well, it can really make or break a relationship.

If you’re on Facebook or Instagram all the time, and you find your newsfeed to be filled with photos or statuses about how your friends’ S.O.’s went all out and did stuff for them, you may have unrealistic expectations.

That’ll be damaging to the relationship because you may start to have a distorted view of your S.O. and think that if they don’t make the same romantic gestures, that they don’t love you.

If you find yourself fixated more on Facebook fantasies of your S.O. rather than on who they are now, disconnect for a while and connect with them in real life!

#4. Always assume the best of your S.O. unless otherwise.

During an argument with your S.O., you may be quick to think that they did what they did to hurt you intentionally. But aside from infidelity, most likely, that’s not where it stemmed from.

If you’re in a healthy relationship, you and your S.O. should love each other in the truest definition of agape love and you should always assume that they want nothing short of the best for you.

Before jumping to conclusions, ask questions and actively listen to their answers, whether or not you agree with them. Then, talk to them calmly and with respect.

#5. Learn their love language and do your best to practice it.

It’s unlikely that two people in a relationship will have the same love language, because everyone is unique and has different upbringings.

Learning and practicing their love language, especially ones you’re not comfortable doing or familiar with, is really the act of embracing, accepting and loving them for who they are.

And realistically, your S.O. will reciprocate it and do the same for you, in order to sustain and keep that true love in tact within the relationship.

Featured Image: Bigstock

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