Sadly, marriage has lost much of its meaning in today’s society.

Sadly, marriage has lost much of its meaning in today’s society. Growing up in a household where my parents have been together over 35 years and my grandparents over 60 years, I was always under the impression that marriage meant forever. It is a pledge, a promise, a commitment to another human being to be there for them (and with them) through thick and thin. To be their teammate and their partner in love and in life.

Unfortunately, these days, “Until death do us part” has become “until I get bored of you,” or “until times get rough.”

A big part of this problem is that people are not fully aware of what it really takes to commit to a marriage. They are rushing love, getting engaged (or pregnant) before they really know someone, and before you know it, a few years have gone by and the divorce lawyers are collecting another pay day.

So, if and when we are going to make this important commitment to the person we love, what exactly is it that a husband and wife need to be able to promise them for the future?

1. “I Promise To Stick By You Through Tough Times.”

I’m starting off with an important one. I have said it before and I’ll say it again: anyone can stand by your side during the sunny days. The real test of character is whether or not they will hold the umbrella over you during the stormy days.

When making a lifelong commitment to someone, you are committing to being there for them “in sickness and in health.” Sickness may not be a common cold. It may be a large, life-altering challenge. It may be the sickness of a family member. Maybe your own sickness. It may not necessarily be a literal health challenge, but perhaps a rough patch in life that tests your commitment and love. You are not pledging to be a fair weather spouse and only be there when times are good. You are pledging to be there always.

2. “I Promise To Always Make Us A Priority.”

Yes, strive for success. Yes, go for that promotion at work. Yes, hustle to take your business to the next level. But be very careful not to destroy your relationship through neglect in the process. Before you were a CEO or a high-powered attorney or a doctor, you were a man or woman who fell in love. You are a human being who is intimately and emotionally connected to another human being.

Even the greatest accomplishments in life lose their meaning when we have lost the person we always wanted to share them with. The key is to find a balance. To build off of your relationship as a foundation. To appreciate your teammate as part of your success as he or she supports you along the way. Letting the scales tip too far in either direction will only lead to disaster.

3. “I Promise Will Never Let You Forget How Much I Love You.”

As an extension of the previous point, sometimes life gets crazy and we lose sight of things by accident. One of these things can easily be letting our significant other know how much he or she means to us daily. One of the biggest problems in long-term relationships is lack of gratitude. When someone feels taken for granted it can easily breed resentment and a whole slew of other problems that will eat away at your foundation.

You’ll know you’ve found the right partner when they keep showing you how much you mean to them, long after they’ve already committed to you.

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