Think back to the day when you first laid eyes on her. You found yourself charmed by the way she talks, the way she dresses herself to show off her best features and the way she embraces life with her laughter. It seemed as if a mysterious “chemistry effect” has suddenly developed to draw you closer to her.
You two then began to meet regularly, and you discover more things that you admire about her. Her clever ideas, her healthy values and the way she stands up for you when others doubt you.
You find yourself thinking of her not just as a normal friend, but a very good friend. It is often during this period that a boy and a gal will start thinking of bringing their friendship to another level. After all, the kind of wonderful experience you have with each other can only become even better if it develops into a romantic relationship. In other words, the feeling is really unique – no one else seems able to replace her in your heart.
So both of you agree to go steady and work even harder on the relationship. You “graduate” to become a couple, and are the envy of the sea of singles.
However, at some point in your relationship, you forgot how it all began. You start to take your partner for granted.
Why can’t she laugh in a more ladylike manner? Why doesn’t she dress herself more trendily? Why must she assert her views and point out your silly mistakes? Is she really the one for you?
To be fair to yourself and her, take some time to reflect on your “love memory”. The “love memory” contains all the reasons that you fell in love with her right from Day One. It contains rarely accessed snippets of how your life has changed since meeting and loving her.
Pre-steady days, did you heap compliments on her for the brave way she spoke her mind on bullies and snobs? You probably did. Did you like her unusual fashion sense that makes her stand out from the crowd? Right-o. So why are you criticising or finding fault with her now that she is your girlfriend?
Because you have forgotten the fundamentals of love, like so many of us. You have forgotten the reasons you admired her during the friendship phase. Instead, once you went steady, you put your “love memory” in cold storage. As her boyfriend, you take up a new set of demands and expectations about her. These new ideas are not necessarily better; they could put your relationship at risk.
A healthy relationship, like learning to walk properly, follows a step-by-step development. You can’t possibly become part of a couple if you aren’t friends in the first place. Ok, I know some of us break the rule and plunge straight into whirlwind courtship, but how many of those couples can go the distance? Couplehood works well when there is something you like about her (and vice versa), and I’m not referring to MERELY the physical aspects.
So whenever your relationship hits a rocky path, don’t give up without checking on your “love memory”. Rediscover the reasons why you fell in love with her, and watch your relationship flourish with a newfound vigour. “Follow the rule of love and enjoy it, as loving someone is a wonderful and sweet experience..”