True Romantic Relationships Have Friendship At Their Core

Research has shown that strong friendship bond with your partner is the secret to having a long-lasting romantic relationship. One of the most crucial traits of a successful, healthy marriage is true friendship
between husband and wife.

How do you then become best friends with your spouse or how do you strengthen the bond of friendship?

Here’s a list of what we believe you should be looking at….

Be faithful. Be Present. Be There
According to Proverbs 17:17, “a friend loves at all times, but a brother is born for adversity.” In other words, the strongest friendships are cemented during hard times. Deep friendships are forged during
times of adversity in a marriage. That’s when you pay the closest attention and learn to trust.

Embrace your differences.
In a normal marriage, the husband and wife are not carbon copies of each other. In fact, they are probably opposites in many ways. We know what we are both alike in and also what we are polar opposites in. Will you rejoice in your differences or criticize them? The best of
couples do not criticize their differences. They even do more than just “accept” the differences. They celebrate it. They leverage these differences – identifying where one’s strength matches up to the
weakness of the other.

Listen. Really Listen
How many times have you tried to have a conversation with someone, only for that person to turn the topic back to him or herself? That’s not what friends do. Friends listen to what is being said, and what is being inferred. Do you take time to listen to your spouse, without trying to fix them or the issue? The greatest gift
any friend could ever give is full attention and awareness.

Make the friendship a priority
Your day will get more jam-packed. Your schedules will get tighter and tighter. Real friends don’t allow life to interrupt their relationships. Genuine friends make each other a priority. Is your spouse a priority
for you at the moment? If your answer is no, your friendship with him/her may be in jeopardy.

Be real and transparent.
Friendship means being honest. Share your heart with your spouse. Talk about opinions, hopes and dreams. Let your spouse into your world. Most importantly, allow your spouse to be real and transparent, too. Don’t customize them to your “mould”!

Bear each other’s burdens.
Friends step up to help in times of need and adversity. They stand up to serve when needed. That might mean physically helping or it might mean supporting a spouse emotionally. Get into the habit of checking in with your spouse. Ask ‘How are you?’ ‘What do you need?’. Never step back and watch your spouse suffer without stepping in to help. You are friends, and that’s what friends do.

Have loads of fun…together.
Great friends spend time together and have fun when they do (most of the time at least). Having fun together in marriage dramatically improves a relationship. In fact, one of the danger signs for divorce is when a husband and wife no longer enjoy each other’s company. When was the last time you laughed together? When was the last time you pursued a hobby together? Plan dates. Play games. Flirt and tease. Romance each other like when you were first dating. Work hard at having fun.

Be Forgiving
This point is a critical one. Even the best of friends step on each other’s toes. We all make judgement errors, don’t we? Real friends
are quick to forgive and move on. To be best friends with your spouse, you will need to constantly practice the act of forgiveness. Don’t let unforgiveness last.

Be Loyal
Loyalty is unquestionably one of the most important qualities of a good friend. You need to know that this person will stick by your side no matter what and that their commitment to you is not fickle.
Marriages go through challenges of their own. When your spouse is your friend, it is easier to go through difficult times together. There are too many fair-weather friends, and spouses in this century. They are only there when the going is good, and everything is rosy. Great friends are loyal friends. Can you spouse vouch for your loyalty?

The best way to improve romance with your spouse is to invest in friendship.

(Do you have anything else you’re doing not on this list? Share with us in your comment).

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