“Once you learn to accept and love them for who they are, you subconsciously learn to love yourself unconditionally.” Yvonne Pierre
Unconditional love is easier with children; after all, children are easy to love…(at least until they’re teenagers)
But the act of loving our spouses often comes with conditions…lots of them. It often looks like the quid-pro-quo version of:
When you are loving towards me, I will be loving towards you. And when you’re not showing me love (in the way that I want to receive love), I will withhold my love from you.
It’s hard to be loving towards someone who isn’t necessarily being loving towards you. Isn’t it?
It means seeing them as they are…
What they’re both willing and capable of giving or being in the marriage…
And telling yourself the truth about whether or not that works for you.
You can love…
Even if they’re not loving to you.
Because it is our true nature to love.
Because you care about how you feel and loving always feels better than hating.
But that DOES NOT mean you have to remain in a relationship with them.
It does not mean you have to remain married to them.
It does not mean you should share the most intimate and vulnerable parts of your heart with them.
Every adult gets to do whatever they want to do.
But every adult also gets to live with the consequences of their choices and actions.
When someone – even your spouse – isn’t treating you with love and kindness, you can see them as the (hurting) person they are.
Unconditional love is easy to say…it’s incredibly difficult to live.
We’re not taught how to do that.
Sometimes, you have to love people from a distance.
And sometimes that distance is further than they would like…
But to practice unconditional love, it has to begin within ourselves.