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  • Writer's picturePaul Cummins


Updated: Feb 26, 2023


by The Life Inspector


Men want to feel respected.

Women want to feel heard.

Men communicate to share information, women to be part of something. It’s better to not assume your partner wants you to help her solve her problems when she brings them up. Most problems in marriage really have nothing to do with whom you married but deep expectations you just assume everyone else shares, usually related to your birth family, or deep hurts you suffered and have developed unconscious coping mechanisms for. A good example of the former is that fight couples have, if they celebrate Christmas, over what kinds of lights go on the tree. Like little white lights or big colored ones… some introspection will probably reveal that the ones you want are the ones you had as kids and, as adults, you need to work out some compromise assuming each of you has equally valid desires.

The goal of life is to keep growing. When plants stop growing they die. Same with us. That’s much harder to do without someone constantly reflecting your view of yourself back to you—if you recognize this you might be (a little bit) more grateful and less annoyed by having a partner. Partner is a really apt word, not companion, not leach, not chief. Partners work together. Remember what brought you together in the first place: those delightful differences between you. Diversity is often described in placid terms but there is nothing easy about getting along with someone who’s fundamentally different than you.

Try to think of your partner as your permanent boyfriend or girlfriend. Keep going on dates. Keep making time for each other every day…even just sitting on the couch together with no other distractions for a few minutes each evening can make a great difference. We all just want to be reassured that we matter to someone.

You can do everything right and still be wrong: that’s just the grown-up world. Life indeed is not fair. Yet it’s much easier with the company of a best friend: a life PARTNER, who loves you no matter what.

Finally, in the worst of times hold onto the fact that the love you give is never wasted. Love is never wasted. It came from you and in that way it was always yours and therefore still is.

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